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Minneapolis Workers' Compensation Law Blog

How to get the ball rolling with a workers' compensation claim

As a member of the workforce in the Twin Cities area, you may be aware of the fact that your employer carries workers' compensation insurance that will cover your medical expenses and lost wages in the event of a workplace injury. However, if you should suffer an on-the-job injury, would you know which steps to take? If you do not follow the appropriate procedures, your employer or the insurer may deny your benefits claim.

After any work-related injury, the essential first step is to get the appropriate medical care. However, your employer may have a list of approved physicians, so you must make sure you have that information. You will then have a limited time in which to report the injury to your employer.

Don't let chronic back pain jeopardize your earning ability

Dealing with back pain is a part of the daily lives of many people in Minnesota, and the jobs they do are often the reason for this chronic pain. Your back injury can cause gradual discomfort that could develop into a debilitating condition that could jeopardize your earning potential. Conversely, if you fall from a ladder, scaffold or other elevated space, slip and fall in an office, or lift an object that is too heavy, your back injury could occur in an instant.

Regardless of the cause of your back pain, you need not suffer in silence. Many employees fear losing their jobs if they report back pain, but leaving it untreated has the potential of resulting in life-long disability. Many employers may realize that timely medical treatment of back problems can benefit productivity.

You have the right to refuse to enter dangerous confined spaces

Does your job in the Twin Cities region involve entering any of the following areas: silos, septic tanks, sewage digesters, reaction vehicles, boilers, vats, pumping stations, pipelines, lift stations, utility vaults, manholes or any other confined spaces? Then you will likely be aware that working in confined spaces is a known hazard that has led to the deaths of many. Some of the recorded fatalities were rescuers who died along with the workers they tried to save.

What defines a confined space?

Is your work making you too stressed to do your job?

Injured Minnesota workers have the right to benefits through their employer's workers' compensation benefits, even when these injuries are not physical. In some cases, a worker could be eligible for this type financial support when his or her injuries are emotional or mental. This could include claims based on work-related stress. 

If you feel overwhelmed by stress because of your work and you are no longer able to do your job because of it, you could secure benefits from workers' compensation. Getting the benefits you need is not always easy, and it may be worthwhile to seek an explanation of your legal rights before you initiate the claims process.

A tech office can be a minefield of injury hazards

Not many people in Minnesota understand the injury risks that exist in the world in which technology office workers spend their days. Dexterity involving hand, wrist and arm movements can be repetitious for many of these workers, and repetitive stress injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome form the basis of many workers' compensation benefits claims. If you are a victim of this condition, the severity will determine whether you can return to work without having surgery.

To prove that stress-related occupational injuries resulted from work could be harder to accomplish than when injuries are evident, such as fractures, burns and other visible injuries. However, offices pose a number of other non-stress-related injury hazards that could lead to debilitating workplace injuries.

How to best avoid short- and long-term injuries as a truck driver

Many Minnesota residents may see commercial trucks as nothing more than menaces on the highways. However, without the sacrifices of truckers, most of the goods consumers expect to find on the shelves of stores would not be there. Operators of big rigs put their health and safety on the line every day.

If you are one of those often unappreciated members of the workforce who spend many long hours on the road, you may be all too aware of the toll it takes on your body. Although the workers' compensation insurance program of your employer will likely have your back if you should suffer a workplace injury, many of the hazards you face cause damage over time. Those injuries may be challenging to prove to be work related.

Can you get workers' compensation for a rotator cuff injury?

Rotator cuff injuries are some of the most common types of shoulder injuries, yet some Minnesota workers may not know that it is a common type of injury for individuals who work in certain jobs. The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, and any injury to this area can be painful and make work difficult. 

If you experienced a rotator cuff injury, you know how painful it can be to simply manage the pain while still attempting to go about your daily life. You could require surgery, rehabilitation and a significant amount of time away from work to fully recover. This can be expensive and emotionally draining, and before you know it, your work injury may affect many different areas of your life.

Typical hazards faced by teenagers with summertime jobs

For many Minnesota teenagers, the summer could not come quick enough. It brings the opportunity for many to get a foot in the door by joining the state's workforce. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, a significant percentage of the national workforce is younger than 24 years old, and if you are one of those, you -- and your parents -- may benefit from paying proper attention to the safety aspects of your chosen job.

Unfortunately, as a young and inexperienced worker, you will have to face many different types of occupational hazards. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration statistics show an alarming number of workplace fatalities and injuries every year involve workers younger than the age of 18.

The right attorney could be invaluable after a workplace accident

Were you involved in a construction site accident in Minnesota? Then you may be overwhelmed with the accumulating medical bills and because your injuries are unfortunately preventing you from returning to work. The fact that workers' compensation insurance covers your expenses might help, but the insurer may want you to settle for an amount that will not cover all your damages.

The prospect of dealing with the paperwork to get a workers' compensation benefits claim filed can be overwhelming. Furthermore, in certain instances, such as when the negligence of a delivery driver of another company caused your injuries or the piece of equipment you were using malfunctioned and caused your injuries, what are your rights? Can you hold a third party liable for the fact that you will be unable to earn an income for months?

Reject the denial of your workers' compensation claim

If you suffer an on-the-job injury, what would you do? If you work for an employer that offers workers' compensation insurance -- which most do -- you would most likely file a claim as instructed. What happens, though, if your provider denies your claim? Sadly, this is something that numerous Minnesota residents have experienced over the years.

The purpose of workers' compensation benefits is to protect employers and ensure that injured employees get the help that they need when they need it. Unfortunately, as is true to form for most insurance companies, workers' comp providers are more concerned with protecting their bottom line than making sure injured workers get medical treatment and appropriate compensation.

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