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California work comp lawyerBrushing off a “minor” injury in the workplace can come back to bite you. Some injuries or accidents may seem like no big deal in the moment, only to become a very big deal later on. If you report the injury right away and have the accident thoroughly documented, then you will have solid evidence that you got hurt at work should you need to pursue a Workers’ Compensation claim later on. However, if you fail to report what happened, it might be more difficult to establish that your injury is a workplace injury.

There are a number of reasons that people do not report workplace accidents, ranging from embarrassment to a belief that the injury will quickly heal on its own. Reporting the injury anyway can preserve your claim just in case. 

Why You Should Report Every Injury, Every Time

“Minor” injuries can turn out to be a much bigger deal than you may have anticipated. Reasons that you should always report every workplace accident or injury include: 


Gilroy workers compensation lawyersSome workplace injuries are much more serious than others. After a simple injury like a sprained ankle, you may need a few weeks off to recover before returning to work. In that case, your claim would be fairly straightforward - you recover lost wages and medical expenses, and you are back at work like nothing happened. However, some workplace injuries can be much more serious. A serious accident that causes a spinal cord injury or traumatic brain injury can leave you permanently unable to return to work. You may have to change career paths, which often involves taking a serious pay cut. Or, you may never be able to work again in any capacity. In these instances, you may be eligible for permanent disability benefits. If you are in this type of situation, it is crucial that you reach out to an attorney for help applying for Workers’ Compensation

When Am I Eligible for Permanent Disability Benefits?

Applying for permanent benefits can be trickier than applying for temporary benefits. You will need some patience, as you cannot apply immediately. It is impossible to prove permanent disability until a doctor has determined that your injury is no longer improving and is unlikely to improve in the future. Depending on the injury, this could take months. A worker with a traumatic brain injury may spend up to a year in a rehabilitation facility while slowly improving as time goes on. Of course, in other cases, it is fairly clear that improvement is unlikely to occur. For example, if an accident leaves you paralyzed or missing a limb, your condition is not likely to get better. 

If your doctor determines that your condition is as good as it is likely to get, but you are still not able to return to work, you might be eligible for permanent disability payments. 


b2ap3_thumbnail_private-investigator-work-comp.jpgIn our last blog post, we discussed the role of a Workers’ Compensation investigator. These private investigators are assigned to Workers’ Compensation recipients who have been out of work. Their job is to verify that the recipient appears to have the injury they claim and the physical limitations they claim. Just because one of these investigators has been assigned to your case does not mean that anyone necessarily thinks that you are faking. That said, if you suspect that a Workers’ Compensation investigator is following you, there are a few steps that you can take to protect yourself. One of the first steps you should take is to contact an attorney who can offer you more specific advice that pertains to your individual situation. 

Know the Signs of Being Under Surveillance

You may notice signs if a Workers’ Compensation investigator is watching you. Look for vehicles you do not recognize sitting parked on your home street near your house, especially if the vehicle is occupied. If you notice the same vehicle while you are out and about, it is likely that you are being watched. While driving, try making three right or three left turns. If the same car is still behind you, you are very likely being followed. 

Also, try to pay closer attention to the strangers you see out in public. If you see the same individual repeatedly in multiple locations while you are out of work on Workers’ Compensation, it could be an investigator. 


Gilroy workers compensation lawyerIf workplace injuries are more common in your line of work, you have probably heard the horror stories. Someone else in your industry got hurt at work, filed a Workers’ Compensation claim, and was awarded temporary disability pay. Then, some private investigator jumped out of the bushes in front of his house, snapped a picture of him doing something innocuous like sweeping his porch, and suddenly his claim has been denied. There is some truth—as well as some misleading implications—in stories like this.

While a Workers’ Compensation investigator may be assigned to your case, your claim is not likely to be denied unless you are seen doing something that your injury should prevent you from doing. If you suspect that one of these investigators has been assigned to your case, it is important that you speak with a lawyer right away and follow their instructions. 

The Role of a Workers’ Compensation Investigator

The goal of these investigators is to identify fraudulent claims. While the vast majority of workers who file a claim through Workers’ Compensation are perfectly legitimate, there are some people who try to take advantage of the system by claiming that they cannot work when they could. 


California workers compensation lawyerWorkplace violence is a nationwide problem. Anyone in any line of work could experience an assault while on the job. In the last few years, health care workers have been particularly vulnerable to being attacked by patients or their family members. Some lines of work may inherently involve some level of violence - for example, if you are a bouncer at a nightclub then it is far more likely that you may be injured intentionally while working. In other lines of work, assaults are far less likely but do still happen. The good news is that if you were attacked while working, you are likely eligible to receive Workers’ Compensation. Depending on who the assailant was, you may also have additional options for pursuing a claim. 

Getting Workers’ Compensation After Experiencing Workplace Violence

No one should be attacked while they are trying to do their jobs. Even if you were not seriously injured physically, you may still have suffered a significant emotional injury. Being assaulted can be traumatic for anyone. The costs associated with a workplace assault are likely to involve both medical treatment and counseling or therapy. 

Whether the injuries you sustained in your workplace were caused by an accident or by an assault, Workers’ Compensation is most likely available. You will need to show that you were working when the attack happened. This means that you must have been actively engaged in your job duties or on the clock at the time you were attacked. If the assault happened while you were working, it does not matter whether the assailant was someone you work with or a third party. 

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