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Workers' Compensation

Friday, June 6, 2014

PA court rules in favor of deceased worker's claim

Employers are not always cooperative with workers' compensation claims and sometimes try to create barriers for an injured employee seeking recovery. One way of doing this is to claim that the employee's injury is not work-related. In cases where the injury clearly took place while the employee was on the job, the argument may be that the employee was not technically acting as an employee at the time of the injury.

This was the argument made by a Pittsburgh gas station when a workers' compensation claim was filed on behalf of a manager who was injured back in 2009 by a robber. According to sources, the manager tried to stop a robber who attempted to steal money from the cash register. In the process of doing so, he ended up with a traumatic brain injury which left him in a coma for a number of months before he died in April of 2010.


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Friday, May 30, 2014

Injured employees and the right to workers' compensation

In a recent post, we commented that employers are well aware of the costs of workers' compensation claims and, because of the financial impact of such claims, aren't always supportive of the rights of injured employers. A recent article in Small Business Trends highlights this issue, and notes that companies may be able to save money on workers' compensation claims by providing their employees voluntary accident and disability insurance as part of their benefits packages.

A certain number of employers have reported that offering such benefits can indeed decrease workers' compensation claims, and thereby the costs of workplace injury. In some cases, such insurance can be added by employers at no additional cost to the company. This is certainly a positive thing from an employer's perspective, but advocates for injured workers should view such recommendations with a healthy dose of skepticism, since they may not ultimately be for the benefit of workers.


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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Report shows workplace injuries to be costly

A recent report looking at workplace fatality statistics is a stark reminder of the risks some workers face every day on the job. The report, published by the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, found that an average of 4,628 workers died on the job in 2012, and that an estimated additional 50,000 workers died from work-related diseases.

Based on these numbers, it is believed that an average of 150 workers die each day because of their work environment. In terms of the total number of work-related injuries and illnesses in 2012, the reported number was 3.8 million. This number, though, is mostly likely low due to underreporting.


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Friday, May 16, 2014

Report looks at prevalence, preventability of ladder accidents at work

Ladders in the workplace can be dangerous, for obvious reasons. When ladders are routinely used at work, the risk of workplace injuries increases, and employers need to ensure workers are properly trained and that they are observing appropriate safety practices.

According to a recent report by the Centers for Disease Control, one of the leading causes of workplace injuries and deaths is falls from ladders. The study says that roughly 20 percent of workplace fall injuries involve ladders, while about 43 percent of fatal falls over the last decade have involved ladders. In 2011, a total of 113 workers died from ladders falls, while there were about 15,500 ladder-related injuries requiring at least a day off work and 34,000 ladder-related injuries requiring a hospital visit.


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Friday, May 2, 2014

Oil boom increases number of oil field deaths

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of work-related deaths among oilfield workers has significantly increased over the last several years. Specifically, a total of 545 oilfield workers died between 2008 and 2012 when the fracking boom was occurring.

Fracking, as many readers know, is the name for the process by which natural gas is extracted from shale deposits. The industry is big here in Pennsylvania, with the Marcellus shale being a major site for fracking in the state. In Pennsylvania, the number of oil field deaths increased 300 percent from the five year period prior to 2008-2012.


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Saturday, April 26, 2014

What isn't covered by Pennsylvania's workers' compensation laws?

No one wants to deal with a debilitating work-related injury or illness. After all, many working families depend on a regular stream of income to make ends meet. Getting injured on the job seemingly disrupts a person's earning potential. However, Pennsylvania residents can rest easy knowing that state workers' compensation laws cover nearly every worker.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, employers within the state are generally required to carry workers' compensation insurance for all of their employees. This means that an individual who suffers an injury or illness as a result of work-related duties can seek financial coverage through the insurance policy.


Read more . . .


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