My fiance was injured at work on January 17, 2007. He was a mechanic at a tire shop and on that day one of the managers was throwing tires down from a loft area where they were stored. It had been a while since "heads up" was called and my fiance had thought that he was done throwing the tire down and was walking across the shop with a tire for the scrap pile when another tire was thrown down. It landed on his head and he was dazed and then he noticed that his neck was hurting.
The manager who threw the tire and the other manager began to tell him that he didn't need to go see a doctor because "OSHA will shut us down" and so he didn't go right then. He had called me to tell me about this incident and I had told him to forget about them and that if it hurt that bad that he needed to be seen by a doctor. I finally got him to go that Friday and he was told by the doctor that he saw that it was probably just a "whiplash" type injury but that if it didn't start to feel better by the following week to come back in.
He had that Monday off and his neck wasn't getting any better so he went back to see the doctor and he received a note to excuse him from work for the rest of that week. He went back again the following week because his neck still was no better and they decided to take an x-ray and found that he would need to be seen by a neurosurgeon. He was then referred to another doctor and made an appointment with that office.
In the meantime, he had received a call from one of the owners of the company and this call was very upsetting. He was cursed at and told to be to work within the hour or he would accept that as his resignation! This is when (six working days later) that he first found out that the owners of the company had never been told of his injury. Upon talking with the other owner he was never told that they would file or that he should file and just assumed that the employer would take care of this process. However, the employer never filed or reported that an injury had occured!
He had called WC and was told that it was his responsibility to file and that he could pick up the paperwork from their office. He was never told that he only had ten days to get this turned in by anyone he dealt with. You would think that his employer or WC would have notified him of this fact!
He went to the WC office and picked up the forms and gave one to the original doctors office and one to his employer to fill out. The doctors office filled it out and sent it in the next day, however, his employer took all week to fill it out and send it in. By the time they received the paperwork, even though it was admitted on there that the tire was thrown by the manager, it was denied because of the late filing.
To make matters worse, he received the notice of denial and somehow it didn't get opened immediately and so, yeah you guessed it, it was also sent in too late!!
The WC lawyer that he went to see after some weeks passed sent his materials back with a "sticky note" that said they no longer had a lawyer-client relationship and "good-luck" written on it. I called the office and all the secretary would say was to call another WC lawyer from the list.
So, I did just that and I was informed by the second WC lawyer that since the appeal was filed too late that there was nothing he or any other WC lawyer could do for him since they only dealt with the appeal process with WC. I was told that he was just S.O.L.!!!
I then called another lawyer to see about suing the company directly for unsafe work place and have gotten no real response here.
What can he do? He has all these bills that he can't pay and prescriptions that run near two hundred every month (that's without one that is over one hundred also that we can never afford) and that's not including our monthly obligations that have to be paid every month!!
I work two jobs right now and am getting very worn down by this and he is very tired of hurting all the time.
Can he get TTD or will he be denied because it was a work related injury? He needs further treatment but he can't even pay for the treatment he has already received! He has been out of work since the following week after his injury and is in such pain even with the meds that he takes. When he runs out of his meds he is even worse and can't function at all.
I just don't know what to do anymore and don't know where to look for help.