A big mistake that I see people make initially is that they don’t report their injury. Sometimes people get hurt or they have had a variety of injuries so they think I don’t want to be perceived as a whiner by my employer so I’ll just see if it goes away. Maybe they get hurt towards the end of the week so they go home and see if it feels better, but then they don’t tell someone about it until the following Monday or Tuesday. However, most of the time, people sign some sort of employee handbook that’s been gone over with them, and they have been told they need to report claims immediately to their supervisor. But if they don’t do that, the question is, “Did you really get hurt at work?” “Why didn’t you do what we told you to do?” “So did you get hurt at home and now you are trying to claim workers’ compensation?”
Sadly, workers’ compensation, sometimes, gets a bad rap. When I started working for the Bureau, my boss (who was the law director then) told me that a lot of times the general public thinks that people who are hurt on the job and filing workers’ compensation is almost like welfare, but it’s not anything like that. These people don’t ask to get hurt; they want to get back to work.