What to Do if You Suffer a Foot Injury on the Job
While employees and employers alike usually do their best to make the workplace as safe an environment as possible, injuries do happen. When they do, you have two major concerns:
- What do I need to do to care for my injury?
- How will I take care of myself financially when I can’t work?
We’ll start with the second question, then return to the first.
Under the California’s Workers Compensation Act, all employees have a right to certain benefits from their employer if they are injured on the job—as long as the cause of the injury was related to the nature of the work. Employers are required by law to:
- Pay for any and all medical treatment necessary to “cure and relieve” the injury, including doctor and hospital bills, medicine, medical equipment, and rehab. Your employer cannot ask you to contribute in any way to these costs.
- Pay two-thirds of your average weekly wage as “temporary disability” in wage replacement, up to the weekly maximum. The maximum payment is adjusted annually based on state averages; currently it is roughly $1,200 per week.
As the injured employee, you are responsible for notifying your employers that an injury has taken place and filing the necessary paperwork within the statute of limitation. You can find detailed information about the proper procedures to follow, as well as downloadable forms, at the State of California website.
Now, back to the first question—how should you care for the work-related foot or ankle injury itself?
For that, you can call the Southern California Foot & Ankle Specialists. We are a team of foot and ankle physicians and medical professional with extensive experiencing handling workers’ compensation cases. Dr. Spencer is a qualified medical examiner (QME) with the California Division of Workers’ Compensation, which means he is approved and certified to examine and evaluate disability and write medical-legal reports that determine eligibility for benefits. When you call for your appointment, please let us know up front that you have suffered a work-related injury.
We know that your two main goals are to have your claim approved in a timely fashion, and then get back to work as quickly and safely as possible. We will work hard to provide the exceptional care you need, and answer any questions you may have about your legal obligations to the best of our ability—we’re not lawyers, but we’ve been through this scenario many times before.
We also understand the importance of clear and timely communication between the employee, employer, medical team, and insurance carrier. Ensuring all relevant parties are well informed about the treatment plan, progress, and status minimizes stress and confusion and protects employer-employee relationships.
We perform QME evaluations in our main office in Mission Viejo, as well as partner facilities in Laguna Hills, Anaheim, Bell, Garden Grove, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Norwalk, and Whittier. To schedule an appointment, give us a call at (949) 364-9255.