What should I do if I have had an accident at work?

What should I do if I have had an accident at work?
Published on: 18 February 2022

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The year 2022 is characterised by the appearance of a multitude of jobs of all kinds, to offer the activities that society demands, however, there are certain jobs that can be truly dangerous and it is important to bear in mind the type of contract that is signed.

It may be that certain jobs are more likely to cause injury to the worker than others, but the most serious is the death of the person affected.

If you have suffered an injury at work or a close relative has died while carrying out their daily work duties, put yourself in the hands of an expert labour lawyer, who will be able to advise you and handle your case in order to obtain the compensation you are entitled to.

What is an accident at work?

The first thing you need to know is the meaning of all that an accident at work encompasses.

It refers to all types of injuries, bodily harm, wounds, blows or illnesses, which may occur to the worker while performing any of their usual duties in their work environment.

Add that it does not only cover the functions performed at your workplace in the normal working day, it also refers to events that may occur outside working hours as well as daily functions that have been agreed with the company.

Accidents resulting in bodily injury at the workplace are common. The important thing is to know whether the company you work for is complying with the laws set out in the framework of labour law and, above all, to have the help of a good labour lawyer who can advise you and defend your rights.

What injuries are considered an accident at work?

Injuries that can be considered an accident at work are:

  • Bodily ailments arising from the performance of work duties.
  • Accidents that may occur on the way to work or on the way home from the work environment.
  • Injuries derived from the execution of functions that, although different from those normally carried out, are carried out by order of the employer.
  • Activities carried out by order of the employer outside working hours that cause damage or injury.
  • Illnesses contracted by the employee in the workplace or performance of duties that aggravate existing injuries.
  • Workplace accidents resulting in the death of the employee due to negligence or lack of safety in the performance of daily duties.

How to act if you suffer an accident at work while performing your daily duties.

If you suffer an injury or ailment while carrying out your daily professional activities and it is recognised as an accident at work by your employer, you should be aware that you have the right to request a medical examination to assess the state of your health.

It may be that the injuries are very minor and you do not need medical leave. Even so, you should be aware that the company must report the accident within 5 calendar days of the following month in which the events occurred, to verify that everything is correct.

If the injury is assessed as serious, you will be granted temporary incapacity, causing you to be off work for a certain period of time.

If the accident is so serious that it results in the permanent incapacity of the employee to carry out his or her work duties, or if it causes the death of the worker, the company must report the accident within 24 hours of the accident.

What happens if a worker dies in the line of duty?

If a worker dies while performing his or her normal work duties, an investigation will be carried out by the police and the Labour Inspectorate to find out the real causes of death due to the accident.

If the investigation reveals a lack of safety measures, either in the performance of the duties or in the environment of the workplace, it would lead to the conclusion that the company was involved in one way or another in the accident.

The owners of the company could be charged with an offence against workers' rights as they have endangered the physical integrity of the employees.

If it is established that the death is due to a lack of safety in the company, they could be charged with the crime of reckless homicide.

Compensation for death at the workplace

If a person dies in the workplace, family members are entitled to receive compensation, the amount of which depends on the degree of relationship of the victim to the family member claiming compensation.

Compensation is usually awarded to the children, spouse and parents of the deceased and is usually very high.

To claim compensation for a death in the workplace of a close relative, you need to seek the assistance of a labour lawyer to initiate the procedure and submit it to the Criminal Court.

It is always expected that the company has an insurance policy that covers this type of issue. In this case, it would be a good idea to negotiate with the insurers to reach an agreement between the two parties and avoid prolonging the procedure.

If the company does not have insurance, it will have to pay compensation to the relatives of the deceased.

The collection of compensation can take quite a long time, between 3 or 4 years, so in general, if you have insurance, it is always advisable to reach an agreement.

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