There are many benefits of working in a warehouse setting, ranging from the fast-pace to above-average pay.
Just the same, there are some potential downfalls, including the increased risk of a serious workplace accident and injury.
As a warehouse worker, it’s critical to understand the most common causes of accidents. This knowledge can help you prevent trouble in the future.
- Heavy equipment accidents: Warehouses are home to many types of heavy equipment, such as forklifts. Improper use can result in an accident.
- Slip and falls: From wet floors to debris, there are many culprits of slip and all accidents.
- Toxic substance exposure: Hazardous chemicals can cause a variety of health concerns if not handled safely.
- Falling objects: Objects that are stored at height have the potential to fall to the ground below.
- Machine entanglement: This occurs when a worker gets caught in some type of warehouse or factory equipment.
Your Legal Rights as an Injured Warehouse Worker in Florida
There are three things you can do to protect your legal rights after a warehouse accident:
- Report the accident to your employer.
- Seek immediate medical attention.
- Consult with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
You have legal rights which include:
- The right to receive medical attention.
- The right to seek compensation for your injuries and related damages.
- The right to return to work upon a doctor’s approval.
- The right to seek disability compensation if you are unable to return to work.
- The right to appeal a workers’ compensation claim denial.
- The right to be represented by a lawyer.
Understanding your legal rights will help you make informed decisions immediately following your accident through your recovery and return to the workforce.
What To Do After a Florida Warehouse Accident
The steps you take after a Florida warehouse accident depend largely on the circumstances, such as the extent of your injury and the type of medical care you require.
However, there are five basic steps anyone in this position should take:
1. Assess Your Injuries
Understanding your injuries allows you to do two things:
- Effectively administer first-aid.
- Effectively administer first-aid.
- Determine where to receive medical treatment (hospital or urgent care facility).
Do not assume that you have sustained minor injuries that can be treated at home. It is always best to receive professional care.
2. Report the Injury to Your Employer
As a rule of thumb, immediately report the accident to your supervisor, HR department, or company owner.
Doing so reduces the likelihood of your employer claiming that you were not injured at work.
3. Seek Immediate Medical Care
This goes along with step #1 above. Not only does it improve the likelihood of a full recovery, but it helps your cause in regards to receiving workers’ compensation benefits.
4. Talk to Your Medical Team About Next Steps
You need to understand your injuries, treatment options, and long-term prognosis. This helps you determine when or if you can return to your job, which impacts your ability to collect workers’ compensation.
5. File a Workers’ Compensation Claim (if applicable)
If you are unable to immediately return to work, file a workers’ compensation claim.
With an approval letter, you will receive all the information you need to proceed. This includes how much compensation you will receive and when to expect it.
It is not what you want, but a denial letter is possible. This will outline the reason for your denial and the steps you must take to file an appeal.
Does Fault Matter?
Unlike a personal injury lawsuit, fault does not come into play with a workers’ compensation claim.
It does not matter who was at fault — even if you caused the accident — you have legal rights as an employee.
The one potential hang-up is if your employer argues that you were not injured at work. Therefore, it is critical to report the injury as soon as it happens, ideally the same day.
Contact a Florida Warehouse Accident Attorney
Even if your claim is straightforward, it is best to consult with a Florida warehouse accident attorney. They can answer your questions, file your claim, and best position you for approval.
In the event of a denial, your attorney can walk you through the appeals process.
Contact us online or via phone at 561-687-5660 to discuss your claim with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.