Pirate Thespians

The Workers’ Comp – Not the Only Source of Compensation in some States

Posted by on Jun 29, 2015 in Injury, Workplace Accidents | 0 comments

Where job-related accidents are the issue, discussion is often focused on construction workers, whose job is always open to the worst kinds of risks. Personal injury lawyers may point out that this is because of the dangerous tools, heavy equipment and, sometimes, hazardous chemicals that they are regularly exposed to; add to these the altitudes (often rising to more than 10 floors) that construction workers need to ascend to be able to perform their task.

Before the turn, and during the early part, of the 20th century, construction workers who got injured while performing their job bore the consequences of their misfortune without assistance from their employer. Employers during those times were often saved from being held accountable for their workers’ injuries by reasoning out that danger is associated with the work and that the workers accepted the job despite knowledge of these dangers.

Thus, for the sole purpose of seeking financial assistance, at least to be able to afford the required medical treatment, workers had to file a lawsuit against their employer, a lawsuit, however, that workers usually lost. A lost lawsuit, though, was not the only effect of workers’ legal move – with it was the destruction of the relationship between the worker and his employer.

This predicament of workers made the government see the need for the passing of a law that will mandate employers to provide assistance to workers who get injured in the job: the Workers’ Compensation Insurance benefit, a federal mandate that was intended to provide workers, who sustain work-related injuries or who develop a work-related illness, financial assistance that will cover medical treatment and lost wages among others.

To further promote the wellbeing of workers another law was passed in 1970: the Occupational Safety and Health Act or OSH Act, which gave rise to the establishment of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) the following year.

OSHA’s task was to enforce the mandates of OSH Act, which was the creation and maintenance of a workplace that was safe and healthy, where employees will be able to work without fear or worry of suffering an accident.

Currently, despite OSH Act’s mandate and the existence of other laws (including state laws) that promote safety in the workplace, accidents still happen and workers still get injured. New York construction accident lawyers may quickly note that their state, there are laws that allow workers to file a lawsuit against general contractors, property owners or machinery manufacturers who fail to ensure safety on construction sites or the safety of equipment used.

Many employers, contractors or manufacturers of construction equipment, however, are not eager about fulfilling their responsibility towards injured workers when it comes to paying them additional compensation.

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