Everyone working in every industry faces the risk of injury at work, even in seemingly safe work environments. However, some industries are inherently more dangerous than others and pose unique risks that all employees must acknowledge and understand. Food service is one such industry, and it’s possible for restaurant workers, catering service employees, and other employees of the food service industry to suffer life-changing injuries in their workplaces.
If you recently sustained any type of work-related injury in the food service industry, it is vital to know your legal options for recovering from the incident. California law requires almost every employer in the state to have workers’ compensation insurance, and this insurance serves two important purposes. First, it provides financial compensation to injured employees, providing benefits that help them recover. Second, it protects employers from civil liability for their injured workers’ damages, allowing them to continue operating with confidence even in inherently dangerous industries.
Canlas Law Group has years of professional experience in workers’ compensation law, and we have successfully assisted many clients in their recovery efforts following various workplace injuries. While it’s common for kitchen staff and other food service employees to sustain minor cuts, scrapes, and burns treatable with first aid, other work-related injuries are more damaging and could leave a victim unable to work and earn income until they recover. Our team is committed to helping Orange County clients recover as fully as possible from their work-related injuries.
Food service is inherently dangerous in many ways. Cooks, servers, bussers, and all other employees of a restaurant, catering service, or other food service business face all types of risks at work, including:
These are just a few examples of how food service workers might suffer injuries on the job. Under the state’s workers’ compensation laws, an injury qualifies for workers’ compensation benefits as long as the injury was sustained while the victim was performing their job duties.
If you sustain any type of injury while working in food service, you should report it to your supervisor immediately and seek medical care. If you require any medical attention beyond basic first aid, you should prepare to file a workers’ compensation claim. Under California law, your employer is required to provide you with the forms needed to submit your claim to their insurance company. If your employer interferes with this process or retaliates against you when you ask to file a claim, you must consult an Orange County workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible to determine your most viable options for addressing these issues.
As part of the claim filing process, you will likely be required to undergo a medical evaluation from a physician approved by your employer’s insurance carrier. This medical evaluation will determine your level of disability, and the disability rating assigned to you will be a major point of consideration when it comes to your benefits determination. After you complete this medical review, you should be ready to submit your claim to the insurance company.
Your Orange County workers’ compensation attorney can verify that the insurance carrier has handled your claim in good faith. They can help submit your claim forms and resolve any issues that might arise from the insurance company. Once you receive your determination of benefits, your attorney can verify that it is acceptable under the terms of your employer’s policy.
The average injured worker in Orange County can expect two types of benefits from a successful workers’ compensation claim. First, all their medical expenses related to the injury will be covered by their employer’s insurance company. This includes ongoing rehabilitation costs and any other long-term medical expenses related to their injury. Second, they will receive disability benefits if they cannot work while they recover. These benefits are usually paid weekly for up to 104 weeks.
If the claimant can still work after their injury, but their earning power has been reduced, or if they can only handle lower-paying light duty, they may receive partial disability benefits until they can resume work at their previous earning level. They will need to report their income each week to maintain eligibility for their benefits. If they cannot work at all until they recover, they can receive total disability benefits equal to about two-thirds of their average weekly pay. For example, if you earn $1,500 from work each week, you should receive about $1,000 in each benefits payment.
You may have additional avenues of legal recourse available depending on how your injury occurred. While you may not be able to file a civil claim against your employer, you may have grounds for a civil claim against a third party if someone outside of your work directly caused your injury. Ultimately, you could be entitled to claim more than you might expect after an injury at work, and Canlas Law Group will work closely with you to help maximize your compensation.
Kitchen work is inherently dangerous in many ways, and while the obvious risks of cuts and lacerations from cutlery and kitchen utensils are visible to most, it is also possible for restaurant staff and food service employees to suffer severe burns, soft tissue injuries from repetitive stress, back injuries from lifting and carrying, and much more. If you are unsure whether your injury qualifies for workers’ compensation benefits, it’s important to consult an Orange County workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible.
It is technically possible to file a claim for workers’ compensation without hiring an attorney, but this is inadvisable for several reasons. First, you would be forced to meet the procedural requirements of your case while struggling with the effects of your injury. Second, you would risk overlooking avenues of compensation or accepting less compensation than you deserve. Finally, an attorney can dramatically reduce the time it will take for youhttps://www.canlaslaw.com/blog/when-to-hire-a-workers-comp-lawyer-in-california/ to recover the benefits owed to you from your employer’s insurance.
The average injured worker who succeeds with their workers’ compensation claim can typically expect full coverage of their medical expenses along with limited recovery for their lost income after an accident. The exact value of a workers’ compensation claim in Orange County typically hinges on the severity of the injury and how much income the victim usually earns at work. Your Orange County workers’ compensation attorney can estimate your claim’s potential value.
Workers’ compensation insurance typically protects employers from liability for their employees’ damages. This means you are generally unable to sue an employer for an injury you sustain in the workplace if they have workers’ compensation insurance. However, if they do not have insurance, or if they compelled you to perform a task outside of your usual job duties that had a virtual certainty of causing harm, then you could file a civil suit against them. It’s also possible to have grounds to file a claim against a third party if anyone outside of your work caused the injury.
It’s natural to worry about the potential cost of hiring legal representation when you are already struggling with the financial effects of a workplace injury. However, there is no cause for alarm if you choose Canlas Law Group to represent you. We take these cases on a contingency basis, meaning you will only owe our firm a fee if and when we win your case, and your fee will be a percentage of the total we recover for you. There is no fee if we cannot secure compensation for your injury, so there is no economic risk to you in choosing our firm to represent your case.
The right attorney can streamline your recovery efforts and substantially improve the total value of your work injury case. Throughout the years of our firm’s operation, we have helped many clients in Orange County with all types of work injury claims in all industries, and we know the unique risks and challenges facing food service employees. If you need help with your workers’ compensation claim, we are ready to assist you. Contact Canlas Law Group today to schedule a free consultation with an Orange County workers’ compensation attorney and learn how we can assist you with your recovery efforts.