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Workplace Injury: How Private Investigators Protect YOU and the WSIB from Bad Employers

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Getting hurt on the job isn’t fun, especially when the injury prevents an employee from getting back to work. The good news is, through the Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB), companies across Ontario can provide compensation and job security. In some cases, however, companies lack empathy and find loopholes to fire injured workers unjustly. Sometimes, they even fire their employees without just cause. In these situations, sometimes the only person who can help the injured worker is a private investigator. When it comes to a workplace injury, a private investigator can truly help to protect you and the WSIB from bad employers.

Before we jump into the how and the why let’s take a look at what the great work the Workplace Safety Insurance Board does for injured Canadians in Ontario. 

What is Ontario’s Workplace Safety Insurance Board?

The Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB) is a government agency for the province of Ontario. In general, the WSIB handles workplace injury cases. What this means is, if you work at a paper production company and you hurt your back on the job, your employer is legally obligated to keep you as an employee until you recover. Through the WSIB, the company is also required to cover a portion of your pay while you are not working (typically up to 60%). 

As you can see, the WSIB provides a huge benefit to many employees in Ontario. Imagine if someone received an injury on the job and a company simply fired that employee. The chances the employee would find another job while still injured are not high. In fact, the employee’s doctor or caregiver has likely indicated that he or she cannot work for a specific period of time. 

The support that the WSIB provides injured employees is an absolute benefit. It truly helps people to know that they still have a job to return to when they can. It also helps people to know that they can also afford to put food on the table while they take the time to heal.

How Private Investigators Help the WSIB

The majority of Ontario residents who get injured at the workplace do not lie about their injuries. In truth, people tend to stick to being honest, as they want to get their life back on track sooner rather than later. However, sometimes an employer gets a bad egg. This refers to employees who claim they’ve been injured when they haven’t been injured at all. 

It is for this reason that the WSIB hires private investigators. Hiring a private investigator helps the WSIB to gather information about the employee. A good private investigator will use different techniques to build a report on the employee in question. For example, a private investigator might run a background check on the employee to see if he or she has a long history of workplace injury claims. In other situations, a private investigator might set-up surveillance to watch the employee as he or she goes about the day. The most important benefit of working with a private investigator is experience and skill. Both experience and skill help the private investigator to gather information without the employee catching on. 

It is important to understand that the WSIB doesn’t go after every single injured employee. The organization’s purpose is to help those who truly get injured at the workplace. However, if the WSIB feels that someone is taking advantage of the system, it’s not fair to those who truly need the services. Therefore, the WSIB will hire a private investigator only in situations where they believe an individual is scamming the system. 

Employers Behaving Badly

After an employee is injured on the job, he or she will need time to get better. Eventually, however, the employee will return to work. In some cases though, the employee’s injury affects his or her ability to fulfill their previous role. What is happening in Ontario however is that the employer or company is firing the injured employee without just cause. The employee is then unemployed and forced to try and find a new job.

Case Studies

Need a few examples? Keep reading . . .

  • A company fired an injured employee after she failed to meet production targets. Why? Well, the company gave her a “modified” job, even though her doctor stated she couldn’t do the work. 
  • Another company didn’t pay their injured employee (steelworker) and he couldn’t afford food. The employee felt he had no other choice but to take a side job. The company fired him for taking on that side job. 
  • During a “modified” shift, an injured temp agency worker was fired for using his phone. However, an independent tribunal stated that the “modified” shift provided him with pretty much no work to do. 

Case Study Results

According to The Hamilton Spectator:

  • When an injured employee returns to work, the company must provide a job for at least 1 year that is “suitable, sustainable and productive”. 
  • Should the company choose to fire the injured employee after 6 months of his or her return, they must prove the decision isn’t due to the injury. The company must prove this to the compensation board. 
  • An employee can appeal the compensation board’s decision. However, in the past 10 years, 55 of the cases moved forward to the highest appeal level. These 55 cases all came from injured employees fired soon after they returned to work. For each of the cases, the compensation board decided the company acted without fault. 
  • That being said, when the employee made an appeal, in 51% of the 55 cases, the employer “violated their legal obligation to re-employ and accommodate injured employees.” 

As you can see, sometimes a bad employer can make life extremely difficult for an injured employee. The thing is, while a private investigator can help the WSIB, they can also help YOU, the injured employee. 

How a Private Investigator can Help to Protect YOU

Did you get injured on the job? Do you believe your employer fired you without just cause? Consider hiring a private investigator! He or she will help you to gather the evidence and information you need to prove to any tribunal or court that your employer fired you without just cause. 

While a private investigator can help the WSIB to figure out who is scamming the system, a private investigator can also help you to prove your employer acted or is acting outside Ontario law. A good private investigator or private investigation company will have the right skills to uncover any information related to your case. As a result, you can arm yourself with the correct information for your tribunal case to try and move through the system faster.

It is so important to make sure that you are aware of your rights as an employee. If you get injured on the job, you don’t want to end up in a situation where your company takes advantage of you. Therefore, hiring a little extra help (aka a private investigator) will only improve the information you provide in your case. Alternatively, for the people out there who do take advantage of the services the WSIB provides, a private investigator will uncover the truth. At the end of the day, a private investigator will provide the evidence needed to help support the victim and solve the case.

Have a few questions about private investigation services? Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Email: or Phone: 888-950-4113

About the Author

Whitney Joy Smith

Founder of The Smith Investigation Agency in 2014, Whitney Joy Smith’s extensive background as a private investigator is matched only by her passion for the role. A graduate of several respected institutions, including Northwest Florida State College and George Brown College, her early years in life were spent between Canada and the United States. This education, along with her formative years as a private investigator in various agencies, informed much of her knowledge of private investigative laws, regulations, and operating standards in both countries.

The recipient of numerous industry awards and accolades, including the Consumers Choice Award, Best in Ottawa, and many others, Whitney takes pride in working closely with her ever-growing agency to raise the bar, maintain compliance, and meet the investigative needs of clients. Whitney is active in various membership and supporting roles, including the CPIRC, CBN, CAPI, Canadian Women’s Chamber of Commerce, and many others. Her experience-driven, thought-provoking articles have been featured in everything from Readers Digest to Business News Daily, and she strives to continually redefine standards for those in the private investigative and security fields. Learn more about Whitney and the team at The Smith Investigation Agency today.

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