Establishing Fault To Disprove Workers Comp Claims

Posted on: 30 July 2018

There are hundreds of thousands of workers compensation claims made every year. Some of those claims are completely false or unwarranted. As an employer, you always want to verify that A) a worker's comp claim is valid, and B) that if a claim is denied, it is because the employee did something that caused his/her own injuries. If you suspect that an employee is trying to fleece you and the workers comp insurance company, you need a workers compensation defense lawyer. Then you need to do the following.

Check Employee Time Cards and Records

One quick way to disprove a claim is to check employee schedules, time cards, and payroll records. If the employee claims that a work injury occurred on a specified date and time, verify if that employee was actually working on that date at that time. If there is a discrepancy, such as the fact that the employee was not scheduled to work that day, then you may need additional evidence to show that the employee was or was not onsite or on the work floor when the accident purportedly occurred. If you have security cameras, see if you still have video footage from that day.

Check Video Footage

If you do have security camera footage of the day in question, watch it to see what you can see. If the employee never entered or left the building or work site, your lawyer can use that to cast reasonable doubt on the employee's story and claim. While it does not totally disprove the employee's claim, it will make a very big impact on your defense.

Look for Evidence of "Fault"

The employee may claim that you are to blame because he/she was not properly trained, or that he/she was asked to operate equipment that did not work properly. In these instances, it helps to disprove such claims by finding fault with the employee's actions. Horseplay, willful avoidance of adherence to the rules, using equipment that was clearly marked as "out of order" or set aside for repairs, and misconduct are all examples that can shed some light on exactly what the employee did that finally resulted in his/her injuries. Yes, it is a "blame game," but in this "blame game" the person with proof is the winner.

Employee Discipline Records

If this particular employee was a troublemaker, you should have discipline records. The discipline records speak to the character and personal behavior of the employee in question. A frequently disciplined employee who was on the verge of being fired might try to retaliate by reporting a worker's comp injury or reporting a refusal of benefits.