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Kitty Hawk Workers' Compensation Law Blog

A unique court case illustrates the special errand exception

Workers’ compensation protects employees injured on the job. However, according to the “coming and going rule,” an employee is usually not covered while traveling from home to the workplace and back.

On the other hand, circumstances may exist in which an employee can be deemed eligible for workers’ compensation if travel time relates in some way to work. One such circumstance is the “special errand exception.”

Does your employer think you are faking an injury?

Injuries such as a broken arm, a sprained ankle or a dislocated finger are easy to identify. Many injuries show up on x-rays, after all, but many others do not.

While at work, you may have sustained a type of injury that is not visible to the naked eye. You are requesting workers’ compensation benefits, but does your employer think you are faking the problem?

Workers' comp claim: Is retaliation possible?

While worksite accidents are still common throughout the United States, the numbers are going down. According to data collected by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, there were three illnesses or injuries for every 100 workers in the year 2015. That is down substantially from data collected in 1972. 

Anyone who has been hurt at her or his place of work needs to file a workers' compensation claim. Many employees forego this step because they fear losing their jobs. It is important for employees to follow the legal steps to try to receive compensation. Although employers should promote following through on the claim, some bosses out there will attempt to skirt around the law. 

Social Security disability claim while collecting on LTD policy

Many times, people misunderstand the relationship that may exist between Social Security disability and private long-term disability benefits. The misunderstanding has resulted in many disabled people failing to make a knowledgeable decision.

Some medically impaired people who have the benefit of an LTD policy and have succeeded in obtaining coverage under that policy decide not to file for SSD. This can be a serious mistake for multiple reasons.

Workers compensation is not a bar to a social security claim

Injured workers in North Carolina often have a pending workers' compensation claim or had one in the past. It is also common for such workers, even when fully unable work, to hesitate to file for Social Security disability benefits. This is due, at times, due to concern about an offset. However, delays in filing for SSD can cause workers to lose some or all of their Social Security benefits. An explanation of the offset related to WC and SSD may clear things up.

The 80 percent rule will apply to a worker who receives both WC payments and SSD payments related to the same month of disability. This means that the combined amount in any given month may not exceed 80 percent of the worker's average monthly earnings.

What does scope of employment mean for workplace injuries?

It is an unfortunate reality that many employees sustain injuries on the job. However, it is not as common as it used to be. Thanks to efforts by federal agencies such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, workplace injuries have decreased significantly over the last few decades. 

Following an injury, attorneys and insurance agents investigate the matter to see if the company was ultimately negligent. Part of this is determining if the injured employee was within the scope of employment when the accident occurred. There are key things to know about the phrase "scope of employment."

3 major misconceptions about workers' comp

Nobody wants to be in a situation where they are unable to do their job. This is exactly what many people face, however, and what motivates them to file workers' compensation claims. According to Employers.com, as many as three million nonfatal workplace accidents can occur in a single year, and these injuries are often serious enough to necessitate medical treatment and time away from work.

If you have experienced such an accident, you might be wondering what to expect from your workers' compensation claim. Hiring an attorney may help you navigate the process and avoid costly errors. In the meantime, however, you can start by learning about some of the most common misconceptions.

Hospital nurses: the dedicated workforce surviving on fatigue

There is no question. When you get home from your shift at the hospital, you are absolutely exhausted, but satisfied. You helped your patients work through their medical problems and hope that you have helped them on the road to recovery.

The problem is that you likely worked longer hours in a highly stressful environment than those in many other professions. The medical industry seems to take for granted the fact that nurses suffering fatigue is a major issue. It's just not right.

Give construction workers the 'brake' they deserve this summer

The good news is that it appears as though the nation's economy is on its way to recovery. Some states, such as North Carolina, have seen a steady increase in development that includes breaking ground on new buildings and infrastructure. In some cases, the contractors are struggling to hire enough hands to complete the jobs on time.

So, what is the bad news? In an odd twist of prosperity and progress, the low jobless rate could contribute to a rise in job-related accidents, especially as roadway construction increases.

Time On Task: An Overlooked Cause Of Workplace Injuries

On the topic of workplace injuries, you typically think of things like wet floors, dangerous equipment and poor maintenance. Another major cause of injuries is invisible: worker fatigue, which reduces productivity and increases the risk of injury or accident.

Sleep deprivation and working on night shifts are two well-known causes of fatigue. A third cause is "time on task," which is the amount of time a worker spends on a specific task. These tasks are the backbone of the economy and are an important part of many jobs, such as driving, data entry, assembly work and processing of orders.

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