If you are unable to work because of an injury or illness that took place at work in East Los Angeles, you might be qualified for workers' compensation benefits. When a workplace injury occurs, you may find yourself missing out on paychecks, accumulating medical bills, and being overwhelmed with paperwork. This can be a very stressful and uncertain time.
Fortunately, California law protects workers from negative fallout related to work injuries by requiring companies to carry workers compensation insurance.
What is Workers’ Compensation and How Does It Work?
Workers' compensation is a form of insurance that is purchased by a company to protect their employees from job-related injuries and illness. It provides a safety net for injured employees to ensure they are not left with no job and no money while trying to recover from an injury. Some jobs can be dangerous, and it shouldn't be the responsibility of the worker to handle all the consequences that come with an injury.
Under the California Workers' Compensation Act, individuals who are hurt at work can get various types of financial support to cover their injury-related expenses. This includes:
Unlike a personal injury case, workers can receive benefits regardless of being at fault for a work-related incident. However, injured employees can not recover compensation for damages typically awarded in a personal injury claim.
Have You Been Hurt at work?
Accidents and injuries happen anywhere, even at work. This is especially true in certain careers and industries, such as:
But the truth is, accidents can happen even in fairly tame work environments.
For instance, even an office worker can be injured on the job. Sitting at a computer all day can create injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome or vision issues. Or there could be a slippery floor or a staircase that may cause a fall. If these injuries go without proper medical attention, they can lead to further more serious injuries down the road.
Common Causes of Workplace Injuries
The top three leading causes of work-related injuries make up more than 84% of all nonfatal injuries on the job. This includes:
Overexertion and Repetitive Motion Injuries
Overexertion injuries can happen when a worker uses excessive physical effort to do a task and becomes hurt. This includes lifting, pushing, turning, holding, carrying, or throwing.
Repetitive motion caused by stress or strain on some part of the body is due to the repetitive nature of the task. Common repetitive tasks include lifting boxes, typing on a computer, using a ten-key machine, sitting for long hours, and working on a production line.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Slip and fall accidents are one of the most frequent on-the-job injuries. They make up 25% of annual injury claims, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Falls on the job involve falling from slippery floors, from tripping, and from heights like ladders, roofs, scaffolding, or various other structures.
Injuries from Contact with Equipment and Objects
Contact with equipment and objects refers to injuries that happen when a worker is struck by something or bumps into something. This can include an employee being struck by a moving object, bumping into or being pushed in front of an object, being crushed in equipment, or being caught in cable or rope. It may also include incidents like a worker being struck or crushed by collapsing structures, equipment, or materials.
Workers' Compensation May Also Cover Occupational Illnesses
Along with being hurt, workers can also get sick with an illness due to their job. When this occurs, workers compensation insurance is designed to help cover some of the costs.
Job-related illnesses include diseases that arise from hazardous work environments or workplace exposures. Some common illnesses that occur at work include:
Cases involving job-related illness are complicated for a number of different factors. One of the main reasons is that you will need to prove that your illness was caused by your job, and not from any other factor like genetics or something that happened during your personal time. This is even more complicated by the fact that many illnesses develop gradually, which makes them harder to notice and to identify the origin.
What Should I Do if I Am Injured at Work?
If you get hurt during your employment, you should always report the incident, injury, or illness as soon as possible to your employer. This is important even if an injury appears minor. This, because injuries that seem minor in the beginning can become much more serious in the coming days or weeks.
For instance, an injury that might seem like just a strained muscle can end up being a sign of long-term nerve damage. Or a sore low back from lifting a heavy object could be a disc herniation that requires surgery.
Furthermore, you should always have a work-related injury assessed by a medical professional. This is the only way to figure out the extent of your injury, and what can be done to recuperate. This is especially important for stress or repetitive motion injuries. In this case, making changes in the ergonomic environment may not only heal the injury, but help to prevent injuries to others. Further, to protect the long-term ability of an employee to keep and carry on in their job.
Lastly, waiting too long to report an injury on the job may seize your right to claim any kind of workers' compensation benefits.
Consequently, if you suffer an on-the-job injury in East Los Angeles, consult with the East Los Angeles personal injury attorneys at Mendez & Sanchez. Don't go through these difficult times alone. We are here to assist you with your case. We understand the causes and effects of job accidents and injuries. Additionally, we know the laws and regulations associated with workers' compensation in California and will work to make the most of the compensation you receive.
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While other firms just handle your bodily injury claim, we offer a complimentary full-service package where we will also handle your property damage for no fee!
Injuries are common in California, especially in bustling cities like Los Angeles. Navigating the complex legal process demands time and effort, but our highly experienced team, fluent in both English and Spanish, is here to offer you a free consultation. We'll ensure you receive the necessary medical care and secure your maximum compensation! Remember you can hire us FOR FREE.
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