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Archive for the ‘Personal Injury’ Category

OSHA Mandates the Electronic Reporting of Work Injuries

May 14th, 2018 at 5:17 pm

DuPage County workers compensation attorneys, OSHA mandates, work injuries, workplace injury, unsafe work practicesThe Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA recently introduced a new rule that requires work injuries from certain businesses to be reported electronically via a new online injury tracking application. Since these businesses have already been required to keep records, this rule will not completely change how they operate. However, it is important to be aware of who is affected by this rule, why it was established, and who it can benefit.

What Businesses are Affected?

The new electronic reporting rule is for businesses with 250 or more employees. It was intended for businesses in industries that are known for high rates of workplace injuries. These industries include:

  •         Construction;
  •         Hospitals;
  •         Manufacturing;
  •         Nursing homes;
  •         Transportation; and 
  •         Utilities.

The Purpose of the New Rule

OSHA enacted this rule to improve the safety of industries with a track record of many on the job of injuries. The electronic data they gather will help them study the injuries and illnesses that arise.

Studying these injuries and illnesses will allow them to find patterns that may lead to recurring problems, design methods that can prevent common injuries, and pinpoint and eliminate hazards before they lead to injuries.

How Employees Will Benefit From the New Rule

The new role will also benefit employees because it will encourage them to disclose unsafe work practices without having to worry about retaliation. Although retaliation is currently illegal, OSHA has implemented more rules to protect anyone who reports unsafe or illegal activities in the workplace.

The new rule states that businesses must notify their employees of their right to report injuries and illnesses without worrying about retaliation. It also directs them to provide easy reporting instructions so that every employee is clear on how to report.

How Businesses Feel About the New Rule

While some businesses are okay with the new rule, others are not happy. Since electronic reporting means that their reports will become public, they are worried that investors may refrain from choosing their business. In addition, they are concerned that electronic reporting can lead to negative public relations.

OSHA believes that electronic reporting will benefit businesses because it will motivate them to create a safer workplace in order to keep their public profile positive. If they are dedicated to gaining investors and employees as well as customers, they will likely do whatever they can to reduce injury risk.

Contact the DuPage County Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

If you are injured on the job or notice an unsafe working condition, contact our highly skilled DuPage County workers’ compensation attorneys. We will make sure your rights are protected and guide you through the claims process if necessary.

Source:

https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2017/12/15/474462.htm

Injuries Caused by Third Parties

December 27th, 2017 at 7:33 pm

Chicago workers’ compensation attorney, injuries caused by third parties, personal injury claim, personal injury lawsuit, workers' compensation benefitsSeveral weeks ago 36-year-old driver struck two construction workers in Joliet, Illinois, causing serious injuries, according to the Joliet Patch. The man was on his cell phone when he approached a work zone on Interstate 80. Distracted, the man drove his 1996 Ford F-350 into a digital board sign and then into two construction workers, both of whom were taken to the hospital. He was charged with aggravated driving and aggravated reckless conduct. But what does this mean for the two construction workers in terms of compensation? Will they be able to sue or are they merely limited to workers’ compensation benefits? 

If you are in a similar situation, and have been injured by a third party while you were on the clock at work, you need to contact an attorney immediately. A Chicago workers’ compensation attorney will be able to answer all your questions and help you towards the road of financial stability 

Collecting Workers’ Compensation and Filing a Lawsuit Requires an Experienced Attorney

When you get injured by a third party while you are at work, such as the case above, you have the ability to receive workers’ compensation and pursue a personal injury lawsuit at the same time. The workers’ compensation will kick in immediately, while the lawsuit or settlement will likely take many months or even years. You get the best of both worlds in this situation, right? Unfortunately, your employer’s insurance company will most likely apply a lien to the personal injury claim. This means that they will soak up some or much of the compensation that you receive from the negligent third party. Let us use the following as an example:

  • Your injuries cost $100,000 in medical damages and lost wages, paid for by your employer’s insurance carrier; and
  • You successfully settle or win a personal injury lawsuit for a net gain of $120,000.

Your employer’s insurance company could theoretically place a lien on that claim for up to $100,000, and attempt to collect all of that money. This would leave you with just a fraction of what your injuries were worth. Seems unfair, and is doubly so when taken into account the fact that in Illinois, your employer’s carrier has the ability to sue the third party directly. While workers’ compensation can be divvied out fairly quickly, and go directly towards medical coverage, paying the mortgage, and putting food on the table, it does not provide any compensation for pain and suffering, which is often the largest aspect of a personal injury lawsuit.

Call an Attorney Today 

You need to work with an attorney who will aggressively fight for every dollar of the personal injury lawsuit winnings, and ensure that your employer does not take back what you fought to receive and is rightfully yours. We encourage you to contact an experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorney with the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio today.

Sources:

http://www.uslaw.org/files/Compendiums2016/2016_USLAW%20State-by-State%20Subrogation%20Rights%20for%20Workers%20Compensation%20Liens%20Compendium.pdf

https://patch.com/illinois/joliet/two-workers-injured-i-80-after-distracted-driver-strikes-them-state-police

The Difference Between Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation

August 19th, 2016 at 1:13 pm

personal injury, Chicago workplace injury lawyerWhat happens if you get injured on the job and it was your fault? You cannot receive damages because you would not win a lawsuit or be eligible for workers’ compensation, right? Wrong. Some injured workers confuse personal injury lawsuits and workers’ compensation, thinking that if they themselves were the cause of their injury, they are not entitled to anything. However, the truth is that you can rarely file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer because the modern system is set up to protect workers not through civil lawsuits, but through workers’ compensation. Additionally, fault is not generally relevant one way or the other when it comes to workers’ compensation.

If worker A was injured on the job because they simply made a mistake and if worker B became injured because their employer failed to provide a non-slippery working surface, the two workers would receive the same compensation for their injuries (assuming the injuries were identical in this hypothetical situation). If you were injured on the job, contact an experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible.

There are other differences between workers’ compensation and a personal injury lawsuit as well. Understanding these differences is important in determining how to seek the compensation you deserve.

Personal Injury Lawsuit

To successfully recover damages in a personal injury lawsuit:

  • Fault must be found with the party that is being sued;
  • Medical bills are covered, as are rehabilitation bills, property damage, missed wages, lost earning capacity, and permanent impairment; and
  • Pain and suffering are factored into the equation, as is loss of enjoyment of life.

Workers’ Compensation

A workers’ compensation claim, by contrast, has very different requirements:

  • Fault is not relevant. Either you or your employer could be negligent and it would not affect the amount of compensation you receive;
  • Medical bills are covered, as are vocational rehabilitation bills, weekly missed wages, and permanent impairment benefits if the injury will result in a permanent disability; and
  • Pain and suffering are not factored into the equation.

When You Can File a Personal Injury Lawsuit Against Your Employer or Another Party

While, in most cases, you cannot file a personal injury lawsuit because of an accident that happened at work (this includes filing against a coworker), there are some exceptions to the rule. For one, if a maritime worker is injured on the job, they can file a personal injury lawsuit against their employer under the Jones Act. Interstate railway workers can also file personal injury lawsuits against their employers under the Federal Employers Liability Act. If an employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance, an injured worker can file a lawsuit against them. Additionally, you may be able to file a personal injury or faulty products lawsuit against the negligent party:

  • If you were injured by a chemical or toxic substance injury you may be able to file a toxic tort lawsuit against the manufacturer of the toxic product;
  • If you were injured by a defective product you may be able to bring a product liability lawsuit to the manufacturer; and
  • If your employer or co-worker intentionally caused the injury to occur, you will probably be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against them, and they may face criminal punishment as well.

If you were injured on the job, contact the experienced Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys at the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio today at 630-574-2288. Reach out to us today for help.

 

Source:

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/jones_act

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