Working in a warehouse can take a toll on a person’s body. The continuous lifting of heavy objects may lead to an assortment of injuries from sprains and strains to lower back injuries, pinched nerves and herniated discs. Trips and falls due to slick floors may lead to fractures and head injuries, and debilitating injuries from forklift accidents are not uncommon.
After suffering a workplace injury, you may have initial misgivings as to whether to report the incident to management. You may think that doing so will cause trouble for you and your coworkers. Will you lose your job? Will management assign you to a lower-paying position? Please look out for yourself and do not hesitate to report your injury.
File a workers’ compensation claim
With a workplace injury, you likely qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. Filing a claim is the only way to determine that.
An employer cannot fire you or any worker who files for workers’ compensation benefits. When an employer seeks to terminate an injured worker in such circumstances, it is considered a form of retaliation. As a result, the employer likely will face a lawsuit.
Protection also in unpaid leave situations
In certain situations, an injured worker also may seek unpaid leave. Your employer also cannot fire you for doing so. The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) protects you.
This federal act entitles you to take unpaid job-protected leave for a family or medical situation. Workers may take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during the work year. Doing so does not place their jobs at risk.
Standing up for your rights
Even though you may not feel comfortable reporting your work-related injury, you must do so to begin the process in obtaining the much-needed workers’ compensation benefits. In doing so, you are standing up for your rights and the rights of your warehouse worker colleagues.