Workplace accidents and injuries happen all across the country and affect millions of people each year. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, in 2018 (the most recent data currently available), over 2.8 million people suffered non-fatal illnesses and injuries while on the job.
If you have the unfortunate experience of being injured on the job, you may wonder what comes next. Further, if the injuries were somehow caused by your actions and you are at fault, you may be concerned about whether you can still get workers compensation benefits. The good news is, in the majority of cases, the answer is yes!
Can I Get Compensation?
In most states, workers compensation cases are processed on a no-fault basis, meaning even if you were at fault or partially at fault for your injuries at work, you can still get compensation. In the long run, this is beneficial for both employers and workers.
The bottom line is, you must have sustained the injury during the course and scope of your employment. Another fairly universal stipulation in a workers compensation claim is that you must inform your employer about the incident and injury. If you are unsure what to do after an injury, ask your employer. You may also head over to your state’s Division of Workers Compensation website or give them a call. They will be able to give you the most current and relevant workers compensation information for your area.
There Are Some Exceptions
As stated before, in most cases, you will get workers compensation benefits for your workplace injury, even if the injury was in any way your fault. There are, however, some instances where this may not be the case:
- If you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol and this factor is the cause of your injuries, you can be denied benefits.
- If your actions are in clear violation of company policies and rules, and injuries occur, you may not get compensation.
- If you are engaged in things like fighting or “messing around” on the job, this may disqualify you from a workers compensation case.
To avoid being in a situation where your claim is denied, be sure to follow all of your workplace rules and regulations. Reach out to your employer if you have any questions or need clarification.
Because workers compensation cases can be complicated at times, it may be beneficial to consider contacting a specialized attorney near you, such as an Iowa workers comp lawyer. They will be able to look at the facts of your case and help you make a decision about which direction to go and whether you have a valid workers comp claim. They may also be able to help you navigate the situation if you were found to be in violation of company rules or engaged in any of the other behaviors discussed before that may lead to a denial of your claim. It is always good to have someone on your side who can answer questions and give you guidance.
Given the current statistics, workplace injuries are not all that uncommon. Should you ever find yourself in the position where you become injured or ill while on the clock, you may be eligible for help and compensation even if the injuries were your fault. Following all your workplace rules and guidelines plus consulting a workers comp attorney when it comes time are ways to ensure you get a positive outcome.