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Archive for the ‘worker’s comp claims’ tag

Appellate Court Ruling Could Affect of Workers’ Comp for High-Risk Industries

May 5th, 2017 at 8:07 pm

Illinois workers comp lawyer, Illinois job injury attorneyThere are certain jobs in which the risk of death is known. For example, firefighters and law enforcement officers know and understand that fatality is a possibility. Unfortunately, that knowledge does not make witnessing the death of a partner or colleague any easier. Some may even be at risk for serious trauma issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which may leave them unable to return to work.

Typically, workers’ compensation covers injuries in which employees are unable to work; some even include psychological work-related injuries, such as PTSD. However, these high-risk industries have not, historically, offered such compensation. That may soon change, thanks to a recent Illinois Appellate Court ruling.

Firefighter Claims Workers’ Compensation for PTSD

Court documents outline how a fire lieutenant/paramedic was directed to take command of an incident during a house fire in March of 2010. Shortly after he took over, a flashover occurred. One firefighter, who was in obvious physical distress, was brought out of the building by two others. That injured firefighter ended up dying.

After having their fire house covered for a week after the loss, the lieutenant struggled to return to his regular duties. He claimed he was having nightmares, struggled to fall asleep, and even experienced issues when trying to interact with other people (his family included). His attorney allegedly suggested he see a psychiatrist, who then diagnosed him with PTSD. The lieutenant returned to work in October of 2010 and was released from treatment in December, but then returned to treatment just one month later. He claimed he was struggling with feelings of guilt and could not shut the incident out. His attorney then allegedly referred him to a psychotherapist. The lieutenant was then diagnosed with chronic PTSD.

Denied Claim Goes to Illinois Appellate Court

Originally, the lieutenant’s claim was denied; an arbitrator ruled that it was not an injury, but rather a tragic risk and consequence of the job. Further, the arbitrator stated that the lieutenant did not witness the injury, nor did he witness his team member’s death, which nullified his claim. The Illinois Appellate Court, who heard his case after it was denied, disagreed. They ruled that he had, in fact, experienced emotional shock during the incident, and stated it had been the cause of his psychological injury. As such, the original ruling was overturned.

The Appellate Ruling and Your Claim

While the recent ruling does suggest that psychological injuries are starting to get the attention they deserve, many are still at risk for a denial of their claims. Further, psychologically injured employees that work within high-risk industries may be even more likely to experience a denial, even after this ground-breaking case. Such industries can include everything from law enforcement and emergency response to construction work.

Reduce your risk of a denied workers’ compensation claim with help from the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio. Dedicated and experienced, our Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys fight for the most favorable outcome possible. We protect your rights, and your best interests, every step of the way. Learn more about how we can assist with your case. Call 630-574-2288 and schedule your consultation today.

 

Source:

https://casetext.com/case/moran-v-ill-workers-comp-commn

Reduce Injuries and Workers’ Comp Claims with OSHA Approved Footwear

February 26th, 2015 at 7:00 am

OSHA approved footwear, Chicago workers’ compensation lawyerWith the enactment of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, the 91st Congress gave birth to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA.

Operating under the United States Department of Labor, OSHA’s main function is to assure the safe and healthy working conditions for all American laborers. By enacting and enforcing workplace standards, OSHA has been able to significantly reduce workplace accidents and lower the number of workers’ compensation claims through training, outreach, education and assistance.

Often responsible for federal and state regulated programs, OSHA’s jurisdiction reaches the vast majority of private sector workers, as well as federal, state, and local employees. However, it does not govern the safety requirements for those who are self-employed, are farm workers, or are with various federal agencies.

For those residing in Illinois, the issue of workplace safety falls under OSHA approved state plans for all public employees. Federal OSHA regulations apply to private sector employees.

For those beginning a new position in the construction, maritime, healthcare, or even the foodservice industry, OSHA rules and regulations regarding safety shoes have been in effect since the inception of the agency.

Under Title 29 of the Code of Federal OSHA Regulations (29 CFR), the use of industry appropriate safety shoes was enacted to lessen the risk of traumatic and debilitating foot injuries, as well lessening the percentage of workers’ compensation claims.

To promote workplace safety, the following industries require employees to wear safety protective footwear to ward against injury by falling objects, vehicles, moveable materials or electrical components.

General Private Sector Industry

Regulations for this category, under general industry regulations (29 CFR 1910.136), generally apply to the healthcare, foodservice, and any other industry that presents an increased risk of possible foot injuries.

Heavy Equipment and Construction Industry

For those working in these fields, the safety regulations require that all employees wear protective footwear while performing their daily duties. Steel-toed or other industry approved boots are specifically required under OSHA regulations.

Shipyard, Marine and Longshoring Industry

Private sector employees in these industries are also required to adhere to OSHA standards of protective footwear under 29 CFR 1915-1918 respectively.

OSHA regulations also dictate that all safety footwear meets the standards of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). For those working in regulated industries, all protective footwear must bear the ANSI Standard Z41 label to comply with OSHA regulations.

Although there are exceptions to OSHA regulations, such as an electrician wearing steel toed boots to guard against accidental foot injury, the benefits of adhering to OSHA standards guard against personal injury, increases workplace safety, and lessens the volume of workers’ compensation claims to keep America working.

If you recently suffered a debilitating foot injury while on the job, the experienced Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers of the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio urge you not to wait to contact an attorney. To find out if you are entitled to benefits under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, contact our offices today at 630-574-2288.

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