Even though you were only 12 at the time, you still remember hearing the news about workers comp like it was yesterday.
You were at an elementary roller skating party at the time, and you remember your school principal walking up to you at the concession stand. She looked very serious, so you were certain that she was not coming talk to you. You were never in trouble in or out of school, so you simply assumed by the serious look on her face that she was on a mission to talk to one of the boys who had been removed from the rink for skating too fast and too recklessly.
On this occasion, however, the principal did pull you aside to deliver some pretty serious news. She wanted to let you know that your mother would not be coming to pick you up when the skating was over. Instead, the principal said she would be giving you a ride home. You were not to worry, but your father had been injured in a fall at work. Your mom was at the hospital with him, but a neighbor would be at your house when you returned home. Because you were only 12 and because the principal explained that there was nothing for you to worry about, you did not get too concerned.
Turns out, however, that when your father fell off the ladder he was standing on in the passenger elevator shaft, he hit his head pretty hard. He did, of course, have on the helmet that he always wore, but the fall was pretty significant. Fortunately for your family, the elevator employee union had already assigned a worker compensation lawyer to the case and your mom was already being assured that the workers compensation claim would be filed without delay. Little did you know, but at the time of the fall your mother’s concern was mostly for the health of your father, but she was also concerned about the lost income in case he would not be able to work.
After six weeks, however, your dad was able to return to work with no restrictions. The worker compensation lawyer who was representing both the union and your father, in the meantime, had made sure that absolutely no paychecks were missed.
Financial Implications of a Workplace Injury Can be Significant
Not surprising, wages and salaries contribute to 70% of compensation costs; The remaining 30% of the compensation is made up of benefits. Unfortunately, for many families the lengthy time they need to wait for these benefits can be devastation. For this reason many legal advisers suggest that contacting a worker compensation lawyer immediately is essential. With an understanding of how the entire process works, a worker compensation lawyer can help facilitate a faster response in benefits.
Interestingly enough, American men and women missed an average eight days of work caused by occupational injuries in 2013. And while this average may be the bottom of the workers compensation picture, it is an indicator of how pervasive workplace injuries can be. In fact, because they workplace accidents and injuries are so common, many employers have their own worker compensation lawyers. Some even have entire departments for this purpose. It is a mistake to think, however, that the company’s workers compensation lawyers are the only resource an employee will need.
Company provided workers compensation lawyers, however, serve the employer. For this reason, many legal advisers suggest having a private workers compensation attorney as well. With the sole job of looking out for the best interest of their client, the injured worker, these attorneys may be able to do a more thorough job of representing the employee. Consider the following statistics:
- 327,060 job-related sprains, strains, and tears occurred in the year 2013
- 229,190 job-related slip, trip, and fall injuries occurred in the year 2013
- 170,450 job-related back injuries occurred in the year 2013
- 125.8 million employees were covered by state and federal workers’ compensation laws in the year 2011
- 1.6% of overall employer spending in America goes toward compensation costs, according to the 2013 Bureau of Labor Statistics’ National Compensation Survey
Unfortunately, accidents on the job can be both physically and financially devastating. The decision to contact a workers compensation attorney, however, may be a step toward limiting these setbacks.