Recently, I had a Piedmont Hospital employee ask me how most clients “mess up” their workers’ compensation case. After some thought, I advised her that the most common issue clients have is not accurately or comprehensively reporting the accident AND injuries to their supervisors. I advise some employees hurt at work to take a moment and actually write down what happened for themselves. These employees should keep in their detailed diary or journal:
- what happened;
- the time and date it happened;
- the names of the witnesses;
- the people involved;
- what caused the accident;
- all the injuries which resulted from the accident;
- who the hurt worker’s supervisor was at the time;
- what the supervisor told the injured employee as to medical treatment and job status;
- medical instructions given by the doctor; and
- the identity of all the doctors he has seen relating to the accident.
The judge will put a lot of emphasis on the initial reports of the accident.
Also, a sure fire way to mess up your case is to miss doctors appointments. By doing this, the State Board of Workers’ Compensation will think that you do not need medical treatment and that you have no disability. On the same token, the injured employee should not exaggerate, nor should he hide, the pain and limitations that has resulted from the work injury. Again, I recommend keeping a journal or diary with the injured workers to document the type of pains he is having. Many of my clients will say, “I forgot to tell the doctor about . . .” It is best to come into the medical appointment prepared.
Furthermore, take down your social media pages. Forget the facebook and twitter updates. The insurance companies may have hired private investigators to see what you are up to and to see if they can twist your “status updates” into evidence against your case. Be smart about what you post. . .
I am sure there are others but these seem to be on my mind. If you have a question about your workers’ compensation injuries, please feel free to contact my firm for a free consultation.