The Operational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) mandates that an employer provide a safe workplace environment. State Workers’ Compensation law creates a barrier for employees injured on the job from filing suit against their immediate employers. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulates workplace safety within multiple industries and defines the safety roles and responsibilities of each entity at a work site. For example, at a construction site, OSHA defines the primary types of employers present, determines the scope of safety duties for each, and defines the reasonable care each is responsible to provide in an effort to ensure the safety of employees.
Because of these strict OSHA rules and guidelines, many injured workers fail to report for fear their employer will be targeted for safety violations. Most workers enjoy their work and have a good relationship with their employer. The employee doesn’t want anything to happen to their employer and/or their employment. Unfortunately, once a work injury occurs, the employer often places the blame on the injured worker and the relationship between them turns sour.
In cases where injury isn’t reported timely and the worker reaches a point where they’re unable to work or need expensive medical treatment, the workers’ comp claim becomes more difficult. In worst-case scenarios, the worker will be without wages for 6 months to a year if the claim is disputed by the workers’ comp insurer.
The OSHA guidelines are meant to protect the employer and the employee. By not reporting a work injury, the injured worker will be hurting any claim for benefits and making it easier for the workers’ comp insurance to dispute the claim.
If you've been injured on the job you need to speak with an experienced workers' compensation attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call us directly at 318.541.8188 to schedule your free consultation.