Every employer should be prepared to conduct their own on the spot workplace injury investigation. In cases of serious injury, or injuries of a questionable nature, early intervention by the employer is essential. By being proactive, an employer can more readily reduce their liability to exposure by preventing a situation from spiraling out of control rather than engaging in a costly court action.
The main reasons to investigate are:
- This is your only opportunity to conduct your own discovery into the cause or legitimacy of the injury while the incident is fresh.
- Allows you to obtain the witness versions of the incident before details are forgotten, in some instances to prevent possible deception or collusion.
- Provides the best opportunity to understand the underlying cause of the incident and to make an informed management decision.
Understanding How to Conduct an Investigation
Every investigation is really nothing more than a step-by-step logical process. You are best served to have specific individuals designated to perform the investigation.
Your purpose as an investigator will be to determine whether the alleged workplace injury had a casual connection with the worker’s employment. You want to know whether the worker was exposed to a particular danger or possibly some other risk peculiar to the Worker’s Compensation actions at the time of the alleged injury.