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Staten Island Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Drafting a will allows you to embrace choice

Many people do not realize that they have choices about what happens after they die. A last will and testament is a legally binding document that gives you the opportunity to express how you want your possessions to be distributed, who you want to care for your minor children and who will manage your final affairs for you.

Because life is uncertain, it can be advantageous to embrace this opportunity for choice while you can. Unfortunately, unexpected deaths happen every day, and when someone dies without a will, there is no longer a way for them to make their wishes known.

Construction outpaces all other industries in work fatalities

In 2017, Fortune reported that work-related fatalities in the construction industry had reached its highest levels since the recession. While the study did not single out New York, this may nonetheless cause some concern among New Yorkers who work in the construction industry. There is some good news, however, as Fortune stated that despite this hike in work-related deaths, American work-related fatalities had trended downward.

Four decades ago, the number of workers killed on the job each year was around 14,000. Fast-forward to the present and that number is around 5,000. Work has, in general, become a safer place for Americans. However, the construction industry defies this trend by consistently spiking upward. In spite of this, construction is still not the most dangerous profession. Truck drivers have the highest fatality rates, while the logging industry has the most injuries.

Be wary of office workplace dangers

In our agricultural and industrial past, workers often longed for an office job away from the harsh weather, loud noises and occupational dangers of work on the farm, factory floor or in the mine.

But office workers suffer from their fair share of debilitating injuries, and while a repetitive stress disorder might not have the cocktail party cache of, say, losing a limb in a logging accident, it can still be painful, life-changing and the cause of a worker’s compensation claim.

Dealing with your latex allergy in the workplace

While you enjoy going to work each day, you also appreciate knowing that while you are at work that you are in an environment that is safe, functional and productive. While every job has its unique risks, if your employer fails to manage these risks, you and your coworkers could end up hurt. At Angiuli & Gentile, LLP Attorneys at Law, we understand the concerns that workers in New York have when they go to work each day. 

While dangerous workplace risks are often associated with hazards such as being crushed or burned or falling from multiple stories, risks can manifest themselves in a variety of ways including how your body reacts to certain environments and factors that you are exposed to. Latex gloves, for example, while convenient for many jobs and industries can be harmful to you if you are allergic to the components used in their creation. If you are concerned about an allergic reaction, you should immediately notify your employer and request an alternative solution so you can avoid an unnecessary illness stemming from your reaction. 

Why do construction workers receive so many back injuries?

If you work construction in New York, you likely can answer the above question in one word: lifting. The lifting your job requires you to do numerous times each day can and does take a toll on your back over time. The heavier the things you must lift, and the longer you work at your trade, the greater the toll.

What you may not realize, however, is that the stress and strain you constantly put on your back while at work can, and usually does, result in minor injuries. They may be so minor that you fail to recognize them as injuries and consequently fail to take the necessary time off to recover from them. As a result, eventually you can wind up with a chronic back pain condition or even a major workplace back injury.

Is your employer required to carry workers' compensation?

If you are an employee in New York and you injure yourself on the job or contract a job-related illness, there is a good chance your employer is responsible to pay for your expenses through its workers' compensation insurance. There are some exceptions to carrying these benefits, but most employers must provide them for all employees.

According to the New York State Workers' Compensation Board, the state requires almost all businesses to have workers' compensation. This includes for-profit and non-profit companies as well as state employers. There are a few exceptions and they include sole proprietorships and partnerships that do not have any employees or volunteers. Keep in mind that independent contractors are not employees, so if you are a contract worker you are not eligible to collect benefits for on-the-job injuries.  

Teachers and work-related accidents

Our blog has addressed many different types of workplace accidents that shatter the lives of hard-working people. However, it is critical to remember that people employed in any field may be hurt while performing their job duties. Some people may think about construction workers and those who face significant risks on a daily basis. However, those employed in relatively safer lines of work may also be hurt while carrying out their job responsibilities. For example, a teacher may be hurt on the job, and these accidents can also be very devastating from a financial and physical point of view.

Teachers can be hurt in many ways while working. Some may no longer be able to work because of a repetitive strain injury brought on by frequent typing and computer use. Or, a teacher may fall down after tripping on an object in the classroom or be hurt while trying to hang something up. Moreover, a teacher may even be injured when they are attacked by a student or a co-worker. Gym teachers and those whose job involves the use of chemicals may also face unique risks related to their occupation.

Not injured on the job but think your cancer may be work-related?

Many workers’ compensation claims may seem obvious. Fractures related to a construction worker falling off a scaffold, nursing staff suffering back injuries while transferring a patient and concussions for commercial driver involvement in motor vehicle accidents might all seem like pretty clear-cut workplace injuries.

But in some cases, such as with firefighters, exposure to certain chemicals can lead to serious illness, including cancer. Though these diagnoses may not occur for an extended period of time, you may be able to recover compensation for cancer caused on duty.

Two lists of the Top 10 most dangerous jobs

Workers in every profession are exposed to dangers from the mundane to the extraordinary – and let’s face it, most of the dangers we face every day are fairly mundane.

But there are professions in which workers face extraordinary dangers, and some of them occur right in your neighborhood. To get a feel for what might be the most dangerous professions, we looked at two recent surveys. The results might be surprising.

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