Will workplace cameras help or hurt a workers’ comp claim?

On Behalf of | Sep 21, 2022 | Workers' Compensation

When someone gets hurt on the job, workers’ compensation benefits help protect them from financial hardship and also protect their employer from financial liability related to the medical condition. Every Pennsylvania company with employees carries workers’ compensation to reduce the risks of a worker getting hurt and costing the company thousands of dollars.

Unfortunately, some employers resent this obligation and may penalize workers who file benefit claims even though state and federal laws clearly protect the right to seek benefits when injured on the job. Some workers fear filing a benefits claim because they know their employer has security camera footage that might show them doing something foolhardy at work.

Is video camera footage a reason for your employer to deny your claim entirely?

Security cameras often have minimal claim impact

Maybe you did something that you know was foolish right before you got hurt, and now you worry that if you get written up, you won’t get benefits. However, failing to report the incident could do more harm than good.

Your right to claim benefits depends on you advising your employer as soon as possible after you get hurt on the job. The longer the delay between when you get hurt and when you talk to your manager about it, the harder it may be for you to claim benefits later.

Fault won’t actually make much of a difference in your claim. Unless there is proof that you hurt yourself on purpose or were under the influence of drugs and alcohol and that impairment caused your injury, the fact that you tripped or that you engaged in horseplay with your co-workers shortly before your injuries will typically have very little, if any, impact on your right to get benefits.

Workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania is a no-fault insurance system, so unless your employer can show that you broke company policy and got hurt, you should still get coverage for lost wages and medical care. Unless video footage shows you hurting yourself on purpose or openly violating workplace rules, the footage showing you caused your injury unintentionally likely won’t affect your claim.

Understanding the rules that apply to Pennsylvania workers’ compensation claims will help you if you need support after an injury on the job.