What to do in the event of a workplace accident

Scenario: Paul makes a wrong move while sawing wood and cuts his finger.

What should be done?
Obviously, this worker must see a doctor. We recommend that you give the employee the temporary work assignment form in case he is capable of doing light jobs or can be temporarily assigned to another position.

Next, fill in your Registre d’accidents, d’incidents et de premiers secours (Accidents, incidents and First Aid record - French only); this will enable you retain all important information on related developments as well as follow up on your workers’ health.

Use the documents which you received from Morneau Shepell if your company belongs to a CFIB Prevention Safety Group, and remember to notify them of the accident by dialing 1-877-598-3234.

What are your financial obligations towards this worker?
The very day of the accident, the employer must pay the worker the salary to which he is entitled.

When a worker is away from the job for an extended period, the employer must pay 90% of his/her net salary for the first 14 days, i.e., computed by subtracting standard deductions from the gross salary (income tax, employment insurance, QPIP and Quebec Pension Plan). This benefit is, however, reimbursable by the CNESST. The gross salary may not exceed the maximum insurable salary.

See Guide de calcul de l’indemnité de remplacement du revenu pour les 14 premiers jours (Guide for computing the income replacement benefit for the first 14 days - French only).

To be reimbursed, the employer must complete the form entitled Avis de l'employeur et demande de remboursement (Employer's notice and reimbursement claim form - French only) and attach the medical certificate. This form also provides space for comments or for your opposition to the admissibility of the accident when you believe that the employee should not be paid by the CNESST. This application must be made within 48 hours of the employee’s return to work or following the 14th day of absence. Please contact your regional office to obtain the form.

Contesting an Employment Accident or a work-related illness
Suppose you disagree with the decision of the CNESST accepting the claim made by an employee who states that he/she has suffered an employment accident or has come down with a work-related illness. You are allowed to contest this decision within 30 days; to do so, you must send the CNESST a letter stating your reasons. The CNESST will examine your disagreement and will give another decision.

Another way to contest the report from your employee’s attending physician is to try to obtain a medical assessment giving the opposite conclusions. To do so, you may insist on having the employee undergo an examination by a health professional whom you choose. However, the expenses incurred must be borne by the employer. The CNESST may also require such an assessment.

Finally, do you have doubts as to whether your company is solely liable for the employment accident or occupational disease? Shared liability is possible through an arrangement generally known as "Cost Sharing" in the case of an employee who has pre-existing personal conditions or who has suffered a similar employment accident with a former employer. Simply make your request in writing to the CNESST.