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Archive for the ‘work injury’ tag

Understanding an Employer’s Responsibility (and Your Rights) After a Workplace Injury Has Occurred

December 18th, 2018 at 8:06 am

Chicago workers' compensation attorneysEach year, an estimated 4,500,000 work-related injuries occur in the United States. Injuries related to overexertion, contact with an object or equipment, and slips, trips, and falls are the ones that most often keep workers from returning to their jobs, which typically results in a loss of income for the employee. Such injuries allow employees to seek compensation for their injuries through their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance, but the denial rate is exceptionally high. Thankfully, when workers understand their rights, as well as the responsibilities of their employer, the chances of a denied claim can be reduced. Learn more in the following sections. 

5 Industries with the Most Missed Work Days from Job-Related Injuries 

Debilitating work injuries can occur in any field, industry, or setting, but statistics show that there are five industries in which employees regularly suffer injuries that result in the most missed time at work. These include the:

  • Service industry (firefighters, police, etc.);
  • Transportation and shipping industries;
  • Manufacturing and production industries;
  • Installation, maintenance, and repair industries; and
  • Construction industry.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance is Your Employer’s Responsibility

Although there are a few exceptions to the rule, most Illinois employers are required to carry workers’ compensation to cover their employees, should an accident or injury occur. Sadly, not all companies comply. If this happens to you, it may still be possible to seek compensation after an injury. Just be sure to reach out to a seasoned work injury lawyer, as this process usually requires even more effort, knowledge, and diligence than a regular workers’ compensation claim. 

Your Rights During a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Americans assume that the workers’ compensation program was developed by workers, to ensure they are protected from substantial and irrevocable loss, caused by an injury sustained on the job. However, this is not exactly true. Employers, who frequently found themselves in court for severe work-related injuries (such as black lung, death, and other tragedies). Many began to suffer financially. Realizing that they could not get out of paying for an employee’s injuries, they came up with a way to contain the cost of work-related injuries – workers’ compensation. 

What all this really means is that the workers’ compensation system is really set up to protect employers, not the workers who are injured. Still, injured employees do have certain rights, including the right to: 

  • File a claim for any injuries or illnesses related to your job;
  • See a doctor and receive treatment;
  • Return to work if your physician clears you;
  • Not fear retaliation from your employer if you do file a claim;
  • Appeal a decision made by your employer, the insurance company, or the courts; and
  • Be represented by an attorney throughout the entire claim process.

Contact Our Chicago Work Injury Lawyer

If you or someone you love has suffered a workplace injury, and you are unable to return to work, contact the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio. Seasoned and experienced, our Cook County work injury attorneys  can assist and protect your rights throughout every step of the claim process. Call 630-574-2288 and schedule a free consultation with our offices today.

Sources:

https://www.nsc.org/work-safety/tools-resources/infographics/workplace-injuries

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2430&ChapAct=820â€%C2%A0ILCSâ€%C2%A0305/&ChapterID=68&ChapterName=EMPLOYMENT&ActName=Workers%27+Compensation+Act.

 

3 Major Causes of Work-Related Back Injuries and How to Prevent Them

October 25th, 2018 at 9:06 am

Illinois workers' compensation lawyersBack injuries are one of the leading causes of missed time on the job. They are also one of the most common reasons that employees file for workers’ compensation. Sadly, even paid claims often fail to cover an employee’s basic living costs. As such, it is important that workers attempt to avoid back injuries, whenever possible. The following sections can help you learn the most common causes of work-related back injuries and how to prevent them. You shall also discover how a seasoned workers’ compensation attorney can assist you in receiving the most compensation possible if you or a loved one has suffered a serious back injury while on the job. 

Insufficient Back Safety Training 

Employers know that back injuries can result in numerous expenditures for the company, which is why most provide back safety training, right at the very start of an employee’s career. Sadly, there are still companies that fail to provide critical safety training for their workers. Some simply assume that an employee should already know how to properly lift heavy items. Others are disorganized and offer insufficient training. Then there are employers who simply lack concern for the safety of their employees. In situations where safety training is required and not received, employees may be owed additional compensation after a back injury. Talk to a skilled attorney to learn more. 

Complacency in the Workplace 

Initial back safety training can help employees avoid early injuries, but as time passes, old habits can reemerge. Workers can also become desensitized to the potential risk that they are facing if they are constantly lifting heavy items on the job. Employers can combat such issues by providing ongoing training and job coaching, but most fail in this area. As such, workers have to be extra mindful to prevent an on-the-job injury. Take notice if you start experiencing even mild back pain on the job, as this could be a sign that you are twisting your spine or lifting incorrectly. Ask for help or coaching from a supervisor if necessary. 

Deadlines, Rushes, Time Crunches, Understaffing

When workers are in a hurry because they are on a deadline, time crunch before the end of their shift, understaffed, or in the middle of a rush, proper lifting techniques often fall to the wayside. As a result, the risk of injury is increased exponentially. In fact, one study found that employees are more likely to cut corners – including those that pertain to work safety – when they feel rushed or are on a deadline. Mental state, which can be altered by time crunches, has also been linked to a higher incidence of work-related injuries. Employees can mitigate their own risk by holding steadfast to their work safety standards, even when production demands are increased. 

Contact Our Cook County Work Injury Lawyers

If you have been injured on the job, contact the Law Offices of Francis J. Discipio. Our experienced Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer is dedicated to ensuring you get the most compensation possible. We can also decrease your risks of a denied claim, and we can help you seek additional compensation if your injury was related to employer negligence. Schedule a free consultation by calling our offices at 630-574-2288 today.

Sources:

https://ascelibrary.org/doi/full/10.1061/%28ASCE%290733-9364%282006%29132%3A2%28182%29

https://www.ishn.com/articles/103452-deadlines-can-erode-safety-and-promote-risk-taking

https://safetymanagement.eku.edu/resources/articles/understanding-human-factors-in-occupational-safety/

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/back-pain/art-20044526

https://www.webmd.com/back-pain/news/20140325/low-back-pain-leading-cause-of-disability-worldwide-study

 

How to Avoid Work Related Eye Strain

September 26th, 2018 at 4:31 pm

Cook County work injury attorney eye strainWhen you work in an office, chances are high that you spend many hours staring at the screen of your computer or other electronic devices. This can cause eye strain, which is a condition that arises in which the muscles in your eyes become fatigued after lengthy periods of intense use. Some common symptoms related to eye strain include mild headaches, difficulty focusing, dry eyes, light sensitivity, and soreness in the neck and shoulders. While eye strain is usually not serious, it can also lead to more extensive injuries that may require medical treatment, in which case you may need to file a workers’ compensation claim.

To avoid eye strain injuries, you can use certain strategies while at work that will help you maintain optimal health while you are performing your job duties. These strategies include:

Give Your Eyes a Break

After working on the computer for some time, it is important to give your eyes a break. Try to follow the 20-20-20 rule, which involves looking away from your screen every 20 minutes and focusing on an object that is 20 feet away for about 20 seconds.

Blink Regularly

When you are focused on your monitor at work, it can be difficult to remember to blink. However, blinking regularly is essential, as it produces tears, which add moisture to your eyes and keep them refreshed.

Reduce Lighting and Glare

If you work in an office setting that is very bright, your goal should be to reduce the light levels, as too much light and glare can cause strain to your eyes, making it difficult to see your computer screen. It is wise to close window shades or blinds in your workplace and try to keep your monitor a good distance away from white walls or windows. You can also try using an anti-glare cover on your monitor or install an adjustable desk lamp.

Increase Text Display Size

Small fonts can contribute to eye strain. If you have a tough time reading the text displayed on your screen, consider increasing its font size, which will allow you to see the words more easily.

Take Daily Vitamins

In addition to adhering to an antioxidant-rich diet full of foods like green leafy veggies and berries, consider taking vitamins that are designed to improve eye health. Vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc can all assist the eyes in reacting well to ample time in front of a computer.

Get Prescription Lenses for Computer Use

If your eye strain is bothering you, visit an eye doctor to determine whether you qualify for prescription glasses to wear while using a computer. Prescription lenses may help you feel more comfortable while you are working on your computer.

Contact Our Chicago Workers’ Comp Attorneys

If you have experienced an eye-related injury at work, you may be able to collect compensation that will cover the costs of your medical treatment and repay you for a percentage of your lost wages. Contact our experienced Cook County workers’ compensation lawyers at 630-574-2288 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=85&contentid=P00516

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