Workers' compensation laws are designed to protect employees who are injured in an accident or contract a disease on the job. The laws of most states require that the employer compensate employees for medical expenses, time missed from work and permanent impairment caused by the work-related injury. If you are injured or contract an occupational disease in the course of your employment, you should protect your rights by immediately notifying your employer and seeking medical attention. Failure to report your injury could hinder later attempts to seek recovery under the workers' compensation law. For more information on compensation for work-related injuries, contact a qualified attorney.