In the Loop but Out of the Middle
“Hurt at work? Call us for a free consultation.” You know the commercial we’re talking about. So how can you prevent your company from facing a long-lasting, and often frivolous, lawsuit? When an employee is injured on the job, they might need to take several days or weeks off while they recover. Even if you’re not seeing them every day, it’s important to keep in touch with them. Communication from their employer will help them feel that they matter; without it, they might feel neglected, or bitter about what happened. The worse they feel, the more likely they are to consider taking legal or other negative action.
To help prevent that kind of situation, workplaces should have standard procedures in place in case an employee is injured while working – including a chain of notification, recorded documentation and a case manager to follow through on all necessary steps to ensure the employee returns to full health.
Should an injury occur, after it’s reported, a workplace case manager should be assigned to communicate with the insurance company and the employee. Employers should be committed to maintaining positive relations with the injured employee throughout reporting, claims, and any medical treatments necessary.
Any disagreements that arise are between the employee and the insurance company, and should be resolved by the insurer.
However, your company should maintain close communications with the insurance company adjuster – be sure to communicate any information you are aware of, and ask that they keep you up-to-date on any developments as well.
If your company has become involved in negative disputes or communication with an employee injured on the job, talk to your insurance company about it. Be sure to communicate all the facts and all the interactions that have transpired, and then be ready to step back from the employee. Refer any negative conversations to the insurance adjuster, and assure the employee that you are doing everything you can to come to the right solution.