In the news, we constantly see stories of employers and insurance companies trying to find ways to avoid paying workers’ compensation benefits to their employees who were injured at work. Here is a classic example of a company trying to punishing its employee who was injured at work while following the instructions of his supervisor.
A Grand Trunk Western Railway Co. employee was seriously injured at work while changing defective railcar wheels in the company’s rail yard. After his injury, the company’s internal investigation found that the employee had violated the employer’s safety protocol, which led him to his injury. So, they suspended him and the employee lost 53 days of work.
Later, after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) further investigated this case, OSHA determined that the worker was only following the directions of the mechanical supervisor to change the tires in a way that violated the worker’s safety protocol. OSHA ordered the company to pay the employee $137,618 in back pay, along with interest, punitive and compensatory damages and attorney’s fees.
Don’t be bullied by employers and insurance companies. If you are injured at work because you were following your supervisor’s instructions, you should not be blamed for the injury. Know what your rights are. Order a copy of our free guide Protect Your Rights: The Ultimate Guide to DC Workers’ Compensation by calling us at (202) 393-3320.