If you are injured in the workplace, witness statements or testimony could help you establish your claim. There may be a co-worker that saw how you injured yourself. There may be a family member that can testify about how your injury has impacted your life.
You might even need an expert to establish legal and medical principles for the administrative law judge. The type and amount of witnesses you may need for your claim can vary depending on the type of accident and the severity of your injuries. Talk to a skilled attorney about the role of witnesses in Columbia workers’ compensation claims.
No. Oftentimes, co-workers may provide direct assistance to an injured worker either by administering first aid or contacting emergency medical professionals even if they did not see how the injury occurred. Other times the co-worker may have seen everything that happened and could provide statements and/or testimony regarding the details of how the injury occurred.
While it may be helpful, you do not necessarily need a co-worker to testify on your behalf to be successful. Sometimes co-workers are hesitant to testify against their employer. Sometimes their employer may put pressure on them to testify in the employer’s favor and they may not make a good witness. We like to believe that co-workers and employers can learn from every workplace injury and if the employer takes the time to gather the facts, maybe they can prevent a future workplace injury. However, that does not always happen. If you believe a certain co-worker would be a useful witness in your claim, reach out to an experienced lawyer in the area.
Yes. Sometimes a workplace injury can be so severe that it has a negative impact on your personal life and relationships with loved ones. It is not uncommon that a family member would be called to a witness in a workers’ comp claim in Columbia. Family members can testify about how your injury has impacted your ability to enjoy life (i.e. prevent you from playing with your children, prevent you from enjoying your hobbies, etc.).
Family members can also testify about the limitations that still exist in your home life from your injury. Sometimes the family member’s testimony can be more impactful than your own testimony because you may not realize the strain that your injury has placed on your loved ones. However, it is not absolutely necessary to have a family member provide testimony for your workers’ compensation claim.
Medical physicians and vocational rehabilitation experts can be some of the most important opinions and testimony that you can gather in your workers’ compensation claim. Medical experts can provide testimony about whether or not they believe your employment is the cause of the injury and can also tell an administrative law judge about the extent and permanency of your injury.
If your injury is preventing you from getting employed again, a vocational rehabilitation expert can testify about whether or not you are employable in the open labor market with the type of injury and disability you now have. Expert witnesses have significant fees in order to provide opinions and testify in workers’ compensation claims. However, their expert opinions are a significant part of your claim, and having experience with the expert witness is important.
It is useful to have witnesses available in your case and hiring someone with experience to help you choose the right witnesses is important. However, understanding the specific role of witnesses in Columbia workers’ compensation claims can be difficult. Contact a dedicated lawyer to help guide you through this complicated process.