The construction industry is the most dangerous industry in which anyone can work based on the number of workplace accidents and fatalities reported in California each year. When it comes to the leading cause of injuries on building sites, fall-related injuries top the list, and it’s important for everyone working in construction to acknowledge the risks they face in various situations. They should also know what to do when a workplace injury occurs and what they can expect from a workers’ compensation claim.
The attorneys at English Lloyd & Armenta have assisted many Coachella Valley clients with their work-related injury claims, including many claims pertaining to falling accidents. Any fall has the potential to be a life-changing event for the victim and their family, and the victim is likely to face a challenging series of legal proceedings when it comes to recovering the compensation they need to fully recover from their experience.
What to Do After a Workplace Injury in California
The workers’ compensation system of California exists as a safety net for injured workers, providing the benefits and economic support needed to recover as fully as possible from serious injuries on the job. Falls can be devastating, even if they are from seemingly low heights. However, the higher the fall, the greater the likelihood of the victim suffering catastrophic or fatal injuries.
After any workplace injury, the victim should report the injury to their employer immediately if they are able to do so. For example, if the victim suffered a severe fall, they could be unresponsive and require immediate medical treatment. In either case, the employer must create a formal incident report of the injury and provide the injured worker with the materials needed to file their workers’ compensation claim.
It is illegal for any employer to refuse to provide an injured employee with these materials. It is also illegal for an employer to interfere with the claim process or attempt to discourage the employee from filing their claim. After you stabilize from your injuries, it is best to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible to provide the legal counsel you need for your subsequent recovery efforts.
Benefits Available for a Fall Injury in California
The workers’ compensation claim system can provide two benefits to an injured worker. First, the insurance carrier should cover all of the medical care the victim requires to recover as much as possible. Second, they will issue temporary disability benefits to the victim for the duration of their recovery period until they are able to return to work.
Part of the workers’ compensation claim process is a medical examination from a workers’ compensation doctor. This physician will evaluate the claimant and assign a disability rating based on the severity of their injury and the level of functional capacity they retain. The higher the rating, the longer the claimant can continue receiving disability benefits. While benefits typically end after 104 payments within five years, it is possible to secure more expansive disability benefits or have grounds for further legal recourse depending on the nature of an injury.
If a specific party caused your fall injury at work, you could have grounds to file a separate third-party personal injury claim against them. This civil suit could enable you to recover compensation for damages not covered by workers’ compensation, such as the pain and suffering you endured. Always consult an experienced attorney as soon as possible after any workplace injury to have the best chance of recovering as fully as state law allows.
Q: What Is the Most Common Cause of Injuries on Building Sites?
A: According to data from various state and federal agencies, the most common cause of workplace injuries in the construction industry is falling. The height and location of a fall typically dictate the severity of the victim’s injuries, which may include broken bones, traumatic brain injury, and more. As a result, falls can easily be fatal and are not only the leading cause of workplace injuries but also fatalities in the construction sector.
Q: How Much Can I Claim in Workers’ Compensation Benefits for a Fall Injury?
A: California’s workers’ compensation laws allow the victim of any workplace injury to receive full coverage for all their medical expenses resulting from a fall, and they also have the right to collect temporary disability benefits until they are able to return to work. The exact value of your case hinges on the severity of your injury and the level of functional capacity you retain after reaching maximum medical improvement from your injury. For the best chance of maximizing your workers’ compensation benefits, you need to hire an experienced attorney you can trust.
Q: How Long Does It Take to Recover Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
A: As long as you meet all necessary filing deadlines, provide the insurance carrier with all required information, and have an experienced attorney handling your case, it should only take a few weeks to receive your first benefits check from the insurance company. You can streamline your claim proceedings substantially by contacting an experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible after your injury.
Q: What Happens If My Claim for Benefits Is Denied?
A: A workers’ compensation insurance carrier can reject a claim, but they must provide solid reasoning. If you believe your claim has been rejected in bad faith, it’s crucial to consult a workers’ compensation attorney. You may need to provide the insurance carrier with additional information, or you may need to appeal their decision through the California Division of Workers’ Compensation.
Q: Is It Worth Hiring a Workers’ Compensation Attorney?
A: Having an experienced attorney guide you through the workers’ compensation claim filing process can not only make the process much easier but also increase your chances of reaching the best possible results for your recovery efforts. The more time your attorney has to address your claim, the more likely you are to reach an expedient and satisfactory result.
The attorneys at English Lloyd & Armenta have years of experience providing client-focused legal counsel to victims of workplace injuries in California. Falls can be tremendously harmful and easily cause long-term or permanent medical complications for victims. If you believe you have the right to file a workers’ compensation claim, contact us today and schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about the legal services we offer.