State and federal regulations are in place to help ensure that workplaces are reasonably safe for employees. Nonetheless, accidents inevitably happen. If you were hurt on the job, it is imperative that you know your rights and responsibilities. Here, our Fresno workers’ comp attorney explains the most important things you should know about your duty to report a work injury in California.
Know the Law: California Labor Code 3600
In California, injured workers have a right to no-fault workers’ comp benefits. If you were hurt on the job, you can file a claim for workers’ comp. Under Cal. Labor Code § 3600, employers bear liability “without regard to negligence” for injuries/illnesses of employees that arise “out of and in the course of the employment.” It is not your responsibility to prove that your employer was at fault for your injuries. Workers’ comp benefits can be recovered regardless of fault.
You Must Report Your Injury/Illness to Exercise Your Rights Under LC 3600
While you do not have a responsibility to prove that your employer was at-fault for your accident, you do have a duty to report your injury/illness in a timely manner. Here are the requirements:
- Specific Accidents: If you were injured in a specific accident, you should notify your employer within 30 days. It is a best practice to notify your employer as soon as you possibly can. If you have any questions or concerns about notifying an employer after a work-related accident, contact a Fresno workers’ comp lawyer for help.
- Repetitive Stress Injuries/Occupational Diseases: With repetitive stress injuries and occupational diseases, employees are also supposed to notify an employer within 30 days. However, there is not always a clear “onset date” for these types of medical conditions. As such, there can be disputes regarding when exactly the 30 days begin.
After you tell your employer/boss/supervisor that an accident has occurred, he or she is supposed to provide you with a workers’ comp claims form. By turning in the employee’s portion of the specific form, you have satisfied your duty to notify your employer. Though, there are other ways to notify an employer, as well. Regardless of how you do so, it is best to get it in writing.
What Happens if You Fail to Report Your Injury to Your Employer in California?
Failure to notify an employer of a workplace accident in a timely manner could cause significant problems for an injured worker. In some cases, it could be used as justification to deny a workers’ compensation claim.
Speak to Our Fresno, CA Workers’ Comp Lawyer Today
Joseph C. Yrulegui is a top California workers’ comp claims attorney. If you or your family member was hurt on the job, you deserve personalized guidance and support. Have questions about your responsibilities after an on-the-job accident? Mr. Yrulegui can help. Contact us today for a fully private, no commitment consultation. Our law firm represents injured workers throughout the region, including in Fresno, Clovis, Modesto, Turlock, Merced, Hanford, Visalia, and Tulare.