Workplace safety should be a top priority for companies large and small. However, it is impossible to keep everyone from getting hurt. Therefore, it is important for employers to take proactive measures to limit their liability in a workplace injury case.
There are many different types of insurance policies that a company can purchase. For instance, workers’ compensation insurance will help to replace an injured worker’s lost wages as well as pay for medical bills related to the injury. General business insurance can help to pay damages that a worker may be awarded in a settlement or personal injury lawsuit. Workers’ compensation insurance costs about $1 for every $100 an employee earns. General liability business insurance can cost $650 per year, or it could cost much more. It just depends on your industry and the unique risks that your employees face.
Identify and Minimize Risk Factors
Workers can face a variety of hazards at work such as wet floors, uneven carpeting and a lack of handrails. Research has found that 15% of accidental deaths can be attributed to slips, trips, and falls, as well as the majority of general accidents. Exposure to chemicals and hot temperatures can also cause injuries on the job.
At a minimum, employers need to provide warning signs, protective equipment or other tools to ensure that employees understand the potential hazards that they face. They should also have an employee safety policy that everyone should read and sign. Failure to adhere to established safety policies may shift some of the liability in an injury case from the employer to the employee.
Be Transparent Throughout the Claims Process
It is critical that employers take workplace injury claims seriously. Workers should be allowed to leave work to seek treatment immediately after falling or experiencing heat stroke. A claim file should be opened as soon as possible and updated as events warrant. By working in good faith with an employee from the beginning, he or she is less likely to file a lawsuit. Even if an injured worker lacks the standing or legal basis to win a lawsuit, it will still take time and money to get a lawsuit dismissed.
A workplace injury is bad news for both the injured worker and his or her employer. Therefore, workers and managers should come together to help create a safe working environment for everyone. Doing so can improve employee morale and improve a brand’s image in addition to shielding a company from liability if an accident occurs.