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Archive for the ‘Workers Comp’ Category

How Do Construction Accidents Happen?

April 19th, 2019 at 11:44 am

Cook County construction worker injury lawyerWhen compared to other occupations, construction workers have a high rate of work-related injuries. These jobs are often physically demanding, and they involve many variables that can lead to fatal accidents or injuries. According to the United States Department of Labor, there were 4,674 work-related fatalities in 2017, and 20% of those deaths occurred in construction accidents.

There are two circumstances in which a construction worker may be able to file a workers’ compensation claim. The first would be for an injury caused by repetition or an occupational hazard – something that was not necessarily the result of a specific instance, but the career as a whole. If a person’s job includes doing the same motions or breathing a hazardous chemical for years, the result may be damage that prevents the employee from continuing their career.

The second type of claim involves cases in which a worker is injured or dies as the result of an accident that took place while they were working. Whether the accident is the employee’s fault or not, they will be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits in most cases.

There are three main types of construction accidents that lead to workers’ compensation claims:

  • Falls – The United States Department of Labor reported that 39.2% of all construction accidents that resulted in death were caused by a fall. Construction workers often do their jobs from high surfaces or structures, and falls from higher than six feet can lead to fatal injuries. Falls can happen because of structural defects, holes or openings in floors or walls, or poorly maintained ladders or scaffolding.
  • Being Struck By an Object – A piece of equipment or material can strike a construction worker suddenly. When an object itself causes an injury, it is considered a struck by object injury. This can include being injured by a construction vehicle, material flying through the air, or material being moved. These injuries can cause brain trauma or even kill the worker on the spot.
  • Electrocutions – Construction workers often do their jobs near live wires, which can lead to electrocution if the proper precautions are not taken. A person can also be electrocuted by fallen power lines or faulty equipment. Electrocutions account for 8.9% percent of fatal construction accidents.

Contact a Chicago Construction Accident Attorney

No matter who is at fault for your construction accident, your medical treatment should be paid for, and if you can no longer work due to an injury, you deserve to receive disability benefits from your company’s workers’ compensation insurance. An experienced Cook County workers’ compensation attorney will make sure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us at 630-574-2288 to arrange a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html

Common Types of Work-Related Repetitive Strain Injuries

February 6th, 2019 at 12:57 pm

Illinois workers' compensation attorney carpal tunnelWorkers’ compensation is often associated with life-threatening injuries or deaths that occur due to a condition or circumstance at work. However, an internal injury caused by repetitive movements, such as carpal tunnel syndrome or tendonitis, can also be covered by workers’ comp. These types of injuries can be more difficult to prove, and nearly half of the claims paid out in these cases were initially denied.

Repetitive strain injuries develop over time. General symptoms of repetitive strain include pain, numbness, tingling, decreased motion or flexibility, and loss of strength. Symptoms for repetitive stress injuries will often not appear right away, and they may develop in stages.

Injuries From Repetitive Motion

Any injury can affect your work or lifestyle. If you work in an industry such as delivery services, manufacturing, or home improvement which requires you to make repetitive motions, it is important to be aware of medical issues that would qualify for workers’ compensation. Some common types of repetitive strain injuries include:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – This repetitive injury affects more than three million people in the United States each year. It is most common for office workers or people who regularly use a computer for a living. Repetitive typing and clicking a mouse creates strain on the median nerve which controls hand and finger function. The carpal bones can swell and cause the strain on the wrist and fingers. Untreated carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to permanent damage to your hand.
  • Tendonitis – Unlike carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis is not restricted to one part of the body. It is the inflammation of any tendon which connects muscle to bone. The most common points of irritation for tendonitis fall in the wrists, shoulders, knees, heels, or elbows. When untreated, tendonitis can lead to the rupturing of an injured tendon that could have otherwise been healed by rest and physical therapy. Tendonitis causes pain and swelling to the affected area, specifically around joints.
  • Tenosynovitis – While Tendonitis affects a physical tendon, tenosynovitis affects the fluid sheath that keeps the tendon lubricated. This is a painful condition that typically affects joints in the hands and feet. Although temporary solutions like icing the affected joints and taking an anti-inflammatory medication may help, surgery or physical therapy is often needed to fully heal.

Contact a Cook County Workers’ Comp Attorney

Injuries which occur during the course of your work should not be ignored. If you believe you have a repetitive strain injury, contact a Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer who has experience helping injured workers receive the benefits they deserve. Call our office at 630-574-2288 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/tendinitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378243

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/carpal-tunnel-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20355603

Dealing with a Denied Workers’ Compensation Claim

November 8th, 2018 at 9:44 am

Illinois workers compensation appeals lawyerInjured workers typically expect a payout from workers’ compensation, but claims are all too often denied. In fact, data from the United States Department of Labor shows that, out of the 4,104 Illinois workers’ compensation claims filed within the past year, more than half were denied. Thankfully, statistical analysis suggests that approximately 70 percent of all workers’ compensation claim appeals are successful, which means many injured workers could eventually receive a payout, even if their initial claim was denied. Learn more about how you can deal with a denied workers’ compensation claim, and discover what our seasoned workers’ compensation attorney can do to help with the process. 

Why Workers’ Compensation Claims Are Denied

Insurance companies are for-profit businesses, so their goal is to save as much money as possible. They do this mostly by denying benefits to injured workers for a myriad of reasons. Denied claims tend to make employers happy as well; fewer payouts mean lower insurance rates for them. In other words, the entire system is set up to benefit employers and insurance companies, and injured workers are the ones who are paying the price for corporate greed. 

Of course, that is not the reason they give for denied claims. Instead, they look for possible issues with either the claim itself or the claimant. For example, they might investigate into your medical history and find that you have a former back injury. If your work injury claim was related to a back injury, they may call it a “pre-existing condition.” Other reasons for denying a claim might include:

  • An injury that did not occur while working. Remote workers and employees who drive must also beware of this rule, as they are often working and operating in a gray area; 
  • Failing to promptly notify the employer about the injury. This is most often seen when a minor injury gets worse, so be sure to report even seemingly minor injuries to your employer;
  • Missing your filing deadline. Deadlines must strictly be adhered to, otherwise injured parties face an automatic denial of their claim;
  • Being intoxicated. Having a drug or alcohol substance in your system at the time of an injury, regardless of whether you were actively using it during working hours, usually results in an automatic denial of a work injury claim;
  • Your employer is disputing the claim. Perhaps they think you are lying, or maybe they say you had been laid off or terminated. Whatever the reason, expect an uphill battle and ensure you have legal protection during the appeal process; and
  • Injuries or medical condition is not covered by workers’ compensation. Fighting a claim that was denied for a pre-existing condition is one thing; these can ofte. Being denied because the insurance company does not consider your back injury “severe enough” can be an entirely different story. Here, victims may have to prove that their injury is impairing their life.

Appealing Your Denied Workers’ Compensation Claim

Insurance companies know that few workers have the time, knowledge, or resources to pursue an appeal on their own. Add in any financial struggles that they may be experiencing, and it is no wonder why so many injured workers simply give up on the idea of receiving compensation – but it does not have to be this way. Injured workers who obtain skilled legal representation to actively and aggressively pursue an appeal on their denied claim are often successful in receiving a payout from the insurance companies. 

The Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio can assist you or your loved one with the appeals process.  Trusted and backed by more than 25 years of experience, our skilled Oak Brook denied workers’ compensation claims lawyer offers free consultations. Schedule yours by calling 630-574-2288.

Sources:

https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/statistics/WebPages/ILLINOIS.htm

https://www.revealnews.org/article/inside-teslas-factory-a-medical-clinic-designed-to-ignore-injured-workers/

https://www.9news.com.au/2018/11/06/13/14/allianz-refuses-injured-firefighters-insurance-claim

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