You’re working in a grocery store as a stock clerk. You enjoy what you do, and you go to work each day to make sure you can pay your bills every month. What would you do if you got hurt at work? Would you be able to pay your bills? If the thought of getting hurt on the job scares you, you’ll be glad to know that each state requires most employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance. Grocery and retail stores are no exception.
Defining Workers’ Compensation
Workers’ compensation is a legal requirement defined by each state that is put into place to help workers if they are hurt or made sick because of their job. It’s a form of insurance that provides for those instances. It helps with medical expenses, medications, therapy, and it even helps cover a portion of lost wages.
Stock Clerks Face the Risk of Injury on the Job
Stock clerks are an integral part of both grocery and retail stores. They move heavy containers of goods and products and place them out for potential shoppers to purchase. Often, stock clerks help clean up messes or move goods for customers. Slip and fall, falling from ladders while stocking the shelves, injuring yourself when lifting heavy packages, and products falling off of shelves and hitting you are just a few of the ways that stock clerks face the risk of injury while on the job.
Stock clerks who work for warehouses often have special risks of their own. Some warehouses are temperature controlled to keep food products from spoiling. This poses a risk for slip and fall because of the buildup of ice. Working equipment, such as forklifts, also pose a hazard.
Injured at Work? Follow These Steps
It’s important to be prepared for the possibility of injury. While you should take every precaution that you reasonably can to be safe, you should also know what to do if you get injured at work.
- Notify your supervisor or the manager on duty. You should do this even if you don’t feel like the injury is serious.
- Complete an accident report. You, your supervisor, or a representative from Human Resources must complete an accident report. It’s important that this is done immediately. It’s easier to remember exactly what happened the day of the accident than a week later.
- Go the doctor. Even if you don’t feel like you’re hurt, you should be looked at by a doctor. The workers’ comp policy may specify a doctor. While you are entitled to see a different doctor or to get emergency treatment, going to the doctor listed on the policy means that you won’t pay anything out of pocket for the visit.
- Talk with a workers’ comp attorney. Your employer may seem compassionate (or they may be irate). They may not have your best interest at heart. Their insurance company will likely look to give you as little as possible or try to totally deny your claim. This is why you must talk with a good attorney to protect your rights.
Your best interest isn’t always the top concern of your employer or workers’ compensation insurance company. You may need a workers’ comp attorney with a proven track record to help you protect your rights as a worker and get you the compensation that you need and deserve!