Newburgh New York Workers' Compensation Law Blog

'Tis the season for heat-related injuries and illnesses at work

The first official day of summer occurs this weekend. However, much of the nation is heating up like it is already mid-summer. It seems that there are few places that one can escape to during the summer months in order to feel truly cool when outdoors during the daylight hours. As a result, it is important for everyone who ventures outside during the day to take heat-related and UV-related precautions.

Individuals who work outdoors are at particular risk of suffering heat-related and UV-related injuries and illnesses during the summer. Lifeguards, construction workers and a host of other workers of every age find themselves battling the summer temperature and the sun’s harsh glare during this time of year. Taking precautions before venturing out and during outdoor shifts can help to ensure that these workers remain as safe as possible while they are out in the summer sun.

Workers' compensation for undocumented workers

We have previously written about the fact that both temporary migrant workers and undocumented laborers are at a heightened risk for being injured in the workplace or killed while on the job. These workers are at a heightened risk for a number of reasons, including the fact that many of these individuals do not speak English and their employers may fail to train them properly in a language they can understand.

Similarly, it can be uniquely difficult for undocumented workers and migrant laborers to seek assistance in the event that they are injured on the job. Migrant laborers may be concerned that missing work or seeking assistance will cause them to lose their work visas. Undocumented workers may understandably be concerned that seeking assistance may lead authorities to deport them.

Workers’ compensation, migraines and you

Migraine sufferers understand that this particular kind of headache can be uniquely debilitating. While other kinds of headaches can be painful, annoying or frustrating, migraines can stop patients in their tracks. Some individuals must take narcotics to help with the pain, while others must simply close the blinds, lie down and wait for the pain to subside. Migraines can last for hours upon hours. It is therefore not surprising that migraine sufferers may be compelled to skip work frequently or forego employment at all, depending on the frequency and severity of their headaches.

If you are a migraine sufferer, you may be wondering if you can receive workers’ compensation benefits in regards to your physical condition. First, understand that every case is different. Therefore, if you have questions about benefits it may be a good idea to speak with an attorney about your particular situation.

What do I do if my working conditions are unsafe?

We frequently write about how important it is for American workplaces to be as safe as is reasonably possible. Federal and state laws govern working conditions for one critically important reason: Without access to safe working conditions, American workers tend to suffer injury, illness and even death as a result of unsafe conditions.

Because it is so important for workplaces to be safe, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspects the conditions of as many work sites as it can on an annual basis. However, OSHA cannot inspect every work site regularly. In addition, some employers maintain unsafe working conditions despite the fact that they are legally obligated to follow a host of regulations related to safe working conditions.

The surprising hazards associated with nail salon work

The New York Times recently published a series of articles detailing just how hazardous it has become to be a nail salon technician. One would initially think that this line of work is no more hazardous than working in a hair salon is. Like hair stylists, nail technicians need to interact with some questionable chemicals, need to avoid slipping on slick floors and need to properly sterilize their tools. However, recent evidence and countless stories are adding up to shocking conclusions about the hazards of life as a nail technician.

In a piece entitled "Perfect Nails, Poisoned Workers," a journalist for the Times tells the stories of various New York City nail salon workers who have suffered miscarriages and whose children have physical and developmental delays. The piece also discusses other health afflictions that many nail technicians suffer from, including chronic coughs, painful skin conditions and even cancer.

Workers' compensation benefits coverage timeline

If you are considering filing a workers’ compensation claim or if you have already done so and been granted benefits, you may have questions about how long you can continue to receive those benefits. Answers to these questions will generally be specific to your circumstances. As a result, it is generally a good idea to consult an attorney experienced in matters of workers’ compensation in order to discuss the nuances of your situation. However, there are some general rules that you can certainly keep in mind while preparing questions for your attorney.

One of the primary factors which will impact the amount of time that you will be able to continue receiving benefits is whether you will eventually be able to return to work. If you are able to return to work full-time within a relatively short period, your benefits will likely not last long. However, if you are not able to return to work full-time either at all or for an extended period of time, your benefits may be made available to you for a significant length of time.

What to expect when returning to work after workers' comp

Imagine that you are at work, having a normal day just like always. As the day progresses, you start to think about how you're going to enjoy your evening -- and then right at that moment, a terrible work accident occurs and you suffer serious injuries as a result. Your evening no longer matters, because your whole future is of far more concern at this moment.

Thankfully, you survive the accident and the injuries you suffered, though severe, can be fixed and you will be okay after some time. During your recovery, you get workers' compensation to help you pay for all the things you normally wouldn't be able to deal with, given your inability to work.

Pollution still threatens workers’ health at Endicott IBM plant

An IBM manufacturing plant in the Southern Tier of Upstate New York has long drawn scrutiny due to pollution concerns. For decades, the plant seeped industrial solvents into the ground, affecting nearby residents and workers alike.

A recent article in the Poughkeepsie Journal reports that pollution remains a problem for more than 1,500 employees who still work at the plant. A decades-long cleanup effort has removed more than 70,000 gallons of toxic chemicals from the ground, alleviating the exposure of residential neighborhoods. However, officials from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation report that an underground pool of concentrated solvents remains below the plant site.

King of Prussia Mall Construction Accident Third-Party Lawsuit

WPVI TV News in Philadelphia recently reported that a worker was critically injured in an electrical accident occurring April 13th at the King of Prussia Mall. It begged the question whether adequate safety guidelines are in place to protect construction workers. Carpenters, bricklayers, roofers, electrical contractors and other subcontractors in the construction trades face the most dangerous working conditions in America. This blog will discuss legal options injured construction workers have for recovering money damages, beyond Pennsylvania workers' compensation. 

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) office reports that one in five workplace deaths occur as a result of construction accidents, with 3,929 reported fatalities in 2013. Electrocution ranked as the number three cause of construction deaths, behind falls and being struck by an object.

You can seek workers' comp with a pre-existing condition

Imagine that you hurt your shoulder years ago in a work-related accident. Fortunately, you recovered enough to be able to return to work. Imagine now that your shoulder is reinjured while carrying out the core duties of your job. You are facing expensive medical bills and need time off of work to recover. If you already received workers' compensation the first time you hurt your shoulder, can you file another claim?

Many people in New York will likely be relieved to know that the answer to this question is yes. Re-injuries are covered under workers' compensation laws in New York. However, seeking benefits for a re-injury is not always an easy process.

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