What Should You Expect at a Workers’ Comp Deposition?
Workers injured on the job in California are guaranteed workers’ compensation insurance coverage provided through their employer. Employers and insurance providers are not always willing to pay, or they may have quibbles concerning the extent of your injuries, the necessity of certain treatments, your ability to return to work, or even whether the injury should be covered at all. If you have a workers’ compensation dispute, you might be deposed by the insurance provider’s lawyer. A deposition is a formal, out-of-court procedure during which the attorneys will question you in the matter. You have the right to have your own workers’ compensation attorney present at the deposition. Should you face a deposition in a workers’ compensation matter, there are a few areas of questioning you can expect. Speak with an experienced Southern California workers’ compensation attorney for help with a workers’ compensation matter on behalf of yourself or a deceased family member.
Details of the Incident
You can expect to be grilled on the specific details of the incident, including everything leading up to the accident, who was present at the time, how everyone was behaving, and what exactly happened. All parties involved will want a complete picture as to the incident, including who was involved, what happened, who was at fault, and whether it was the type of accident that should be covered. You will face questions concerning, for example:
- Your physical, mental, and emotional state on the day leading up to the accident
- Your conduct before the accident
- Other workers’ behavior before the accident
- A step-by-step recounting of the accident
- What exactly happened leading up to the accident?
- Who was involved? What was each person doing?
- What safety rules were in place at the time? Was everyone following those rules?
Your Injuries, Your Limitations, and Your Medical History
Much of your workers’ compensation case will turn on the injuries you sustained in the workplace accident. Opposing counsel will be trying to ascertain the true extent of your injuries, whether they existed before the accident, and whether you truly have been unable to work since the incident. You can expect questions concerning, for example:
- Your specific injuries
- Your pain levels before, during, and since the accident
- The diagnoses and prognoses from your physicians
- Estimations from your doctors concerning recovery time
- Your ability to engage in typical life activities such as cooking, playing sports, exercising, playing with your children, and attending social functions
- Your ability to perform your specific workplace duties
- Your medical history, including every doctor visit over the past few years
- Any preexisting injuries or other medical conditions
Your Medical Treatment
Your coverage amount also depends upon the medical care you have received and expect to receive for your injuries. You can expect questions about the treatments you have undergone, treatments recommended by your physicians, current and future estimated costs from those treatments, expected use of medical devices such as wheelchairs and crutches, and whether there are cheaper alternatives for any of the above.
Your Behavior Following the Accident
Finally, you should expect to be grilled about your life following the incident. If the insurance company believes that you have not been following your doctor’s orders concerning behavioral limitations, medications, or treatments, or if they can show that you have been engaging in physically-strenuous conduct since the accident in your personal life, then they may try to reduce or reject your coverage.
Be especially careful with posting on your social media about your recreational activities such as sports and exercise, or stating that you are healthy in order to keep your family and friends from worrying. Any of these posts may be used by a workers’ compensation insurer to reduce your coverage.
TRUSTED ADVICE AND REPRESENTATION FROM THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WORKERS’ COMPENSATION ATTORNEYS AT INVICTUS LAW
If you have a claim for workers’ compensation and want to ensure you get the maximum available coverage, call Invictus Law today at 949-287-5711, and speak with a knowledgeable California workers’ compensation attorney to evaluate your claims.