Accidents happen, even at work. When an accident occurs in the workplace and results in permanent disability, it can be challenging to know what to do next. This situation is incredibly stressful because it can happen to any worker regardless of their industry. Each state has its rules and regulations that govern the rights and compensation available to employees who suffer permanent disability in the workplace.
1. Understand Worker’s Compensation Law
Workers’ compensation laws, also known as workman’s compensation, mandate that employers provide benefits to injured employees. These benefits are often designed to cover medical expenses, disability benefits, and wage loss compensation. In most cases, workers’ compensation laws exclusively cover accidental injuries that occur at work, including permanent disabilities. Thus, it’s important to understand the specific laws in your designated state.
2. Know Your Disability Rights
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal law that requires employers to grant reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities. This legislation applies to employers with over 15 employees, including state and local governments. The types of reasonable accommodations available to affected workers will vary based on several factors, including disability type, job function, and cost to the employer. Importantly, workers will still need to be able to perform essential job functions even with reasonable accommodations, so it is critical to be informed of your rights and expectations regarding your disability.
3. Get Legal Help
The legal system can be complicated and tricky to navigate, especially when dealing with an injury that has affected your physical, emotional, and financial well-being. You may need to prepare complicated paperwork or give statements to the insurance company. If you ever feel like you’re not receiving the benefits, treatment, or accommodations that you deserve, it’s recommended that you seek out professional legal advice. They can help protect your rights and increase your chances of receiving the proper compensation for your situation.
4. Document Everything
If you have suffered a permanent disability in the workplace, you must start documenting everything related to your injury immediately. From the moment of the accident, keep copies of all relevant paperwork, including medical reports, bills, insurance documents, and more. This documentation helps you keep track of the details of your injury. It is a valuable tool for filing for worker’s compensation or seeking legal action against your employer.
Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Serving California
If you or a loved one has experienced a workplace injury resulting in a permanent disability, know that you are not alone. At Ghitterman, Ghitterman & Feld, we understand the complexities of workers' compensation and disability law. Our team is committed to advocating for your rights and ensuring you receive the benefits and accommodations you are entitled to. Contact us today at (805) 243-2179 to explore how our legal services can assist you in securing a stable and fulfilling future.