It’s interesting how many people don’t know that, if they suffer a workplace accident, they’ll be asked to submit to a drug test. They certainly don’t think that they’ll be asked to take a drug test so quickly after their workplace injury. Unfortunately, for your employer, this is the only way they can check to see if you were under the influence at the time of your slip and fall or other workplace accident. If your Tampa workers comp lawyer finds that you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of your workplace accident, there may not be much they can do to help you. Unless you can show that the test was wrong or that you were not under the influence of drugs, there isn’t really a strong argument for your Tampa injury lawyer to make.
Some Employees Think the Drug Test is Against the Law
One thing our Tampa workers comp lawyers have learned is that many employees assume that it’s against the law for their employer to require them to take a drug test. One of them will cite privacy laws and pieces of the constitution to our associates. The truth is, it doesn’t take much to substantiate the rule that all employees are required to submit to a drug test upon their employer’s request.
If you happen to refuse to take the drug test, there’s a very good chance that your workers’ compensation claim will be denied. It will appear to your employer that you’re refusing to take the test because you know that you’ll test positive. You know that if you test positive, your workplace injury claim will be denied, and you will not receive the workers’ compensation benefits.
What will happen in a case like this is your employer will deny your workplace injury claim. You’ll go to your Tampa workers comp lawyer and ask them what they can do to help you. The best they can do is maybe request your employer to give you one last chance to take the drug test. Otherwise, not only will your claim be denied, but there’s a good chance you could be fired from your job. If the company’s policy is zero-tolerance for drug use, you could get terminated.
Workers Who Were Under the Influence May Want to Wait to File Their Workplace Injury Claim
What a lot of our clients tell us is that they purposely wait to report their workplace injury for a week or two. They figure, this way, they’ll be sure that there are no drugs in their system when they finally meet up with the nurse administering the test. The problem is that there is never a guarantee that the drugs won’t show up on your test. It is a real gamble, but it may be the only option you have.
One concern with doing this is that the drugs may still show up on your test anyway. The other possible outcome is that your employer is so upset that you waited that long to file your claim, that they deny it. If this happens, your Tampa workers comp lawyer can certainly file an appeal on your behalf. They will argue that something other than a potential drug test failure is what kept you from reporting your workplace injury for so long. Perhaps they’ll be able to show that your injuries were so severe that you were not able to manage filing any paperwork on your own behalf. They may also submit proof they were in the hospital for much of that time and that you were told specifically to relax and have not been in a position to deal with these matters right away.
Your Tampa Injury Lawyer Can Try to Prove the Drugs Were Prescribed to You
If you do test positive for drugs, there are very few options available to your Tampa injury lawyer. The only real viable option is to argue that the drugs are prescribed to you and therefore not against workers compensation requirements. You may be able to submit a copy of your prescription with your doctor’s name on there, the prescription itself, the patient’s name, and the date. The bottle will also contain your prescription instructions. If your Tampa injury lawyer can somehow prove that you took your medication properly, there may be a chance for you to win on appeal. If your attorney is able to do this, then you will start to collect workers comp benefits.
Feel Free to Reach Out to One of our Tampa Workers Comp Lawyers
If you’ve been hurt on the job and aren’t sure what to do next, give us a call. We can always schedule your free, initial consultation right over the phone. Or, if you prefer, you can schedule your appointment through our website. One of the things our Tampa workers comp lawyers pride themselves on is being open and honest with our clients. If your workers comp benefits were denied because you were under the influence of drugs, your claim will be denied, and it will almost be impossible to appeal. We can give it a shot, but the odds of your employer agreeing to pay your claim are slim to none.
The best thing to do is to call our office as soon as possible after your workplace accident. You can schedule your free, initial consultation. This gives you the chance to sit down with an experienced Tampa workers comp lawyer and tell them your side of the story. You can ask your attorney any questions you may have about your case. Make sure you’re up front about why your claim was denied. There isn’t much that our Tampa injury lawyers can do if we don’t know the full truth. Since the consultation is free, you really don’t have anything to lose. All you have to do is call our office today and set up a date and time to come in and meet with us.