Here, our work accident attorneys in San Bernardino discuss what happens if you are injured at work, and nobody saw the incident occur. If you have been injured at work, then you are likely entitled to compensation. Any person who sustains an on-the-job injury in San Bernardino should be able to receive workers’ compensation insurance that will cover their medical bills, lost wages, and temporary disability if necessary. However, there can be complications when securing this type of compensation. An employer or an insurance carrier could push back for various reasons, particularly if no one witnessed the work injury.
Why would workers’ compensation be denied if there was no witness?
“If there was no witness, then it must not have happened.”
Those may not be the exact words of an insurance carrier or an employer, but that is the general gist of the reasoning behind denying a workers’ comp claim when there were no witnesses. Of course, there are certainly many scenarios in which a person could sustain an on-the-job injury and there be no witnesses. Not every person works around other people all day long.
Steps to take when there were no witnesses to your work injury
1. Tell your supervisor
It is critical that you let your supervisor know as soon as you have been injured in the workplace. Under California workers’ compensation law, you are generally entitled to compensation regardless of which party caused the work injury. This is considered a type of no-fault insurance. California law requires that injured workers report any workplace injuries or illnesses to their employer within 30 days, though it is not recommended to wait very long before reporting the work injury.
When you report your injury to your supervisor, you need to let them know how the injury occurred and ensure that they make a report.
2. Seek medical assistance
You need to seek medical care as soon as you realize you have sustained an on the job injury or illness. If this is an emergency situation, make sure that somebody calls 911 so you can take an ambulance to the hospital. Even if a situation does not seem like an emergency, it is still important to get evaluated by a doctor. This is particularly true for incidents where there were no witnesses. If an injury victim did not seek medical care immediately following the alleged incident, this will be one additional reason for an employer or an insurance carrier to deny the claim.
3. Ensure the employer files a workers’ comp claim
It is important to follow up with an employer in these situations. You need to make sure that the employer did their part in filing the claim with the workers’ compensation insurance carrier. Regardless of whether or not there were witnesses, the employer must fill out the proper paperwork and go through the required channels. Even if they are going to dispute the claim, they still have to file the incident with the insurance carrier.
4. Speak to an attorney
If you sustained an on-the-job injury or illness and are having trouble securing your rightful workers’ compensation, you need to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. A skilled San Bernardino workers comp lawyer will be able to examine the facts of your case, determine liability, and secure full compensation for your losses.