It is National Safety Month, a good time for the attorneys at Kisling, Nestico & Redick to remind the people of Ohio that workplace accidents are far too common in the state and can often land a victim in the hospital with a serious injury. In some cases, workers are even killed by an on-the-job accident that results in injury.
What are Ohio’s Workplace Safety Regulations?
Thankfully, the workers of Ohio receive protection from very effective safety regulations that are in effect at all levels, including state, federal, and local, including OSHA rules and regulations and the Ohio Administrative Code. These rules alone mean all employers are legally required to maintain a safe workplace for every worker, including providing safe and clean work equipment and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) that is appropriate for their job and workplace. Employers are also required to ensure all workers receive proper safety training, understand how to perform their work safely, and use proper safety procedures in their job.
Unfortunately, even with the protections built into the law, some employers continue to value increased profits over worker safety, which can sometimes make worker injury cases even more difficult than otherwise.
In Ohio, workers’ compensation laws often provide the framework for how the victim of a workplace accident seeks compensation, but they can be limited under some circumstances. For example, if a workplace injury can be traced to a defective product, or negligence on the part of subcontractors, property owners, or other third parties, those who opt for the benefits of workers’ compensation may find themselves having to accept that.
How Common Are Workplace Injury Cases in Ohio?
According to statistics from the Ohio Workers’ Compensation Bureau, the average year finds around 175 fatal occupational injuries, a number that has been increasing virtually every year for the past decade or so. The three industries with the fatal workplace injuries tend to be the Transportation industry (36 fatalities in 2017, the last year compiled), the Construction industry (32), and the Administrative and Waste Services industry (21). In Ohio, the three most common workplace accidents that lead to fatal injuries include:
- Transportation Accidents
- Workplace Violence
- Workplace slips, trips, and falls
Men were most likely injured, as were workers 55 and older.
If You’ve Been Injured in a Workplace Accident, What’s Next?
Ohio’s workers’ compensation law can positively impact the injured employee. In some cases, when a worker is injured on the job, the compensation they receive almost automatically is adequate for treating them medically and keeping the bills paid, at least in the near term. Under Ohio law, the injured victim of a workplace accident is entitled to receive weekly benefits equal to 72% of their take-home pay at the time of the injury. After 12 weeks, the benefit amount will adjust to two-thirds of your take-home pay at the time of the injury.
The problem is that most workers’ compensation regulations’ stated purpose is to ensure the victims of workplace accidents receive the medical help they need without tying up the courts with litigation for months or years. That usually means the accident victim is technically prohibited from filing a lawsuit against the employer, even if the employer could have been found liable.
Why is Getting Compensation for a Workplace Incident Difficult?
As anyone who has been injured in a workplace accident can tell you, recovery from a serious injury can take several months, if not a couple of years, to happen. Trying to handle everything you must do during the recovery makes everything even more difficult. That is why it is important to hire an attorney, such as the professionals at Kisling, Nestico & Redick, to help you through the process, especially if there are grounds for a lawsuit that could hold a party other than your employer accountable for your injuries and allow you to recover a lot more for your injuries from the parties found to be liable.
Sometimes, an Ohio worker who has been injured on the job may also be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit, even if they receive workers’ comp benefits. If you feel as though you are in this position, contact a personal injury attorney, such as the law group of Kisling, Nestico & Redick, to stand for you and help you with your case. They can determine your situation or determine that you are eligible to file a lawsuit in addition to getting the workers’ compensation benefits promised by Ohio law.
How Can Kisling, Nestico & Redick Help You with Your Workplace Accident Claim?
The Cleveland Workplace Injury Lawyers at Kisling, Nestico & Redick are here to help anyone through what is likely one of the most difficult times in their lives. The firm allows any prospective client to engage in a free initial consultation so that they can answer any questions you may have and discuss all of your possible legal options.
Suppose you suffered an injury as a result of an accident that occurred while you were performing duties as part of your employment. In that case, it is quite possible, even likely, that you will qualify for Workers’ Compensation benefits. It doesn’t matter whether you are a full-time or a part-time worker. According to Ohio Workers’ Comp law, the employer must provide workers’ comp benefits starting on day one after a workplace accident resulting in an injury.
In addition, Ohio employers must also provide all material and reasonable medical treatments, as well as all costs intended to cover necessary rehabilitation and physical therapy. The employer must also cover all wage losses and spousal benefits related to benefits. However, to get even more requires you to hire an attorney with the knowledge and pure skill necessary to be able to deal with third parties who are ultimately liable.