Tell ’em it happened some other way ….
When your supervisor tells you that is what you should do after an on-the-job accident, that should make the hairs on the back of your neck stand straight up. And doing it is just the kind of thing that can kill your case – costing you thousands of dollars and access to quality medical care.
If someone asks you to do that, you should absolutely refuse to go along with it.
Why would a supervisor ask you to do that? There are a bunch of reasons:
- It will cause the company’s worker’s comp insurance to go up;
- It could trigger an internal investigation;
- It could wreck your division’s safety record.
Whatever the reason, none of them have anything to do with looking out for your best interests.
The scary thing is that people go along with it. Maybe they want to be a team player, maybe they like and trust their supervisor … whatever the reason it is a bad, bad idea.
I’ll give you a hypothetical: you hurt your back lifting something. Clearly on the job, clearly work-related. You report it to your supervisor, and he says to go see your primary care doctor the next day and tell him that you did it getting a bag of dog food out of your trunk.
You do just that because you want to be a team player, and the doctor writes down on your chart, “Patient reports that he began having low back pain last night after getting a bag of dog food out of the trunk of his car.” Because you are not saying that the low back pain was work related, your health insurance pays the bill.
Your expect to get better, but it just doesn’t happen. You get a prescription for physical therapy and that just makes things worse. You get a referral to a specialist who tells you to stay off work while he does a series of injections into your low back.
You know that your family can’t go without money while you are off work, so you tell your supervisor that you need to go on comp. He says OK and you get the claim started, and things look okay, for a little while.
Then you get the letter from the insurance company denying the claim, pointing to the record your primary care doctor made noting that your back pain started with lifting a bag of dog food. Then your health insurance stops paying bills because they now know that the injury was work-related, and health insurance doesn’t pay bills worker’s comp is supposed to pay.
No income, no way get care to get you better so you can go back to work.
When you try to get your benefits reinstated, your testimony has to be that you lied to your doctor the first time you saw him, but you are telling the truth now when you say it was work-related. You may guess that kind of testimony does not go down well.
The question for you: do you think that being a team player is worth putting yourself at risk for having that happen?
The only rational answer to that is “no.” If anyone ever suggests that to you, keep the stakes in mind before you agree to that.
If you have a current worker’s compensation issue which you need help on, please feel free to reach out to our office by calling us at 312-263-1080 to discuss your issues and what options you have. There is no obligation to hire our law firm, and there is no charge for the call.
I hope this has been helpful, and if you know anyone who can benefit from this kind of information, please feel free to share this information.
We are here to help truck drivers after an on-the-job accident. Knowledge is power, and the first step in protecting your rights is to know what they are.