What is the Responsibility of an Employer If An Employee Gets Injured At Work?
Occupational Safety and Health Laws require employers to meet health and safety standards at work. When it comes to industries that work with chemicals or machinery, these laws can be even more stringent. As an employer, you should also understand the local rules and regulations that pertain to workplace safety in your state.
However, even with you doing your best to protect your employees at work, accidents can still happen. What do you do if this is the case?
What should you know about protecting your employees at work?
If an employer gets injured at work, they can apply for claims against your business. This is standard and doesn’t mean that your employee is trying to hurt your business. That’s why many states require business owners to have a Workers Compensation Insurance Policy.
An accident comes without warning. An employee could encounter an accident by falling at work while transporting goods on a vehicle or even from fainting. When this happens, you should consider filing a First Report of Injury report and sending it to your workers comp insurance carrier as soon as possible.
What is your actual responsibility as an employer when it comes to maintaining workplace safety standards for your employees?
1. Running risk assessments
Employers should consider conducting risk assessments to uncover potential risks that could affect the health and welfare of their employees. These include unsafe locations, exposed wiring or faulty machinery, as well as industry-specific risks.
Certain industries, such as those dealing with chemicals or dangerous equipment, may need personal protective equipment for employees. A good way to get the most out of your risk assessment for your workplace is by running an industry-wide risk assessment. By understanding the most common risk factors in your industry, you can do your best to ensure that you implement preventative measures against such risks at your workplace.
2. Workplace health and safety training
Safety trainings should be provided to all your employees. Many businesses provide their employees with work and safety manuals as well. They should be informed about the safety protocols you’ve set in place. Consider making them aware and informed about what to do when an emergency or accident happens. Then they’ll be able to react immediately and help protect themselves as well as your business.
Every time you hire a new employee, you should provide health and safety training to them. Including first aid training as well as emergency response training can make your workplace even safer.
3. Implementing safety protocols
Safety protocols provide information on what should be done in any situation that involves an accident or an emergency. During such situations, people often shut down and are slow to respond. Established protocols can inspire faster action.
You can also create a Safety Response and Action team. The main responsibility of the team is to follow the established protocols and ensure that any injured employee is given immediate attention.
Even if an employee doesn’t want to receive help or go to a hospital, you should still provide them with as much help as you can.
4. Document everything
Documentation can be a major boon, especially when it comes to claims. Filing injury reports should be standard for big and small accidents alike. Even if an employee trips and has a minor scratch, ensure that you’ve documented it. That way, should the employer face further issues from their injury and file for claims, you’ll have documentation on hand.
Documentation also helps you when it comes to maintaining health and safety regulations. If an inspector asks for documents from you during a standard safety inspection, you can provide them with the data immediately. Using an electronic management system to store your documents will help protect them at all times.
5. Having a Workers Compensation Insurance policy
Workers Compensation policy can protect you and your business should an employee file claims. It provides for medical support, partial recovery of wages when an employee can’t return to work due to injuries, and even disability benefits. Workers Cover does not apply should an employee get injured while off-duty. It similarly doesn’t cover situations where an employee is intoxicated or deliberately not following workplace health and safety regulations.
However, in such circumstances, the employee won’t be able to file claims either. In situations where an employee has truly gotten hurt on the job owing to an accident, Workers Comp can help your business.
An employer may not be directly responsible for accidents and injuries that occur at work. However, taking care to ensure that accidents don’t happen in the first place is the employer’s responsibility. Similarly, providing first aid, notifying emergency services, and documenting the injury is also the employer’s responsibility.
Insurance policies like the Workers Compensation Insurance Policy can help you protect your business as well as your employees. If you want to learn more about Workers Comp and other business insurance, you can click here.