Dennis Kenny Law
Menu Contact
View Our Practice Areas

How will the government shutdown affect workers' compensation?

When our politicians in the nation's capital could not iron out a budget by Sept. 30, the federal government "shut down" on Oct. 1. In practice, this is a partial shutdown, meaning that many federal agencies needed to close their doors while others needed to scale back operations to maintain only operations deemed essential.

This leaves many workers wondering how exactly this will affect them in terms of their workers' compensation cases and workplace safety issues. The news on those issues is mixed: good and bad.

First, let's start with the good news. The vast majority of workers' compensation cases and claims are handled at the state level. Therefore, workers' compensation claims filed in New York will move forward, and the federal government's shutdown will not have much of a direct impact on those state-level claims.

However, the news is not good when it comes to workplace safety. The U.S. Department of Labor will be affected by the government shutdown, and the Department of Labor has a very important function in making sure workplaces are safe for employees. According to recent reports, the Labor Department will only get to keep about 18 percent of its workers during the shutdown.

Specifically, it is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration that is the agency within the Labor Department that enforces workplace safety standards. OSHA normally performs safety inspections of workplaces, and many of these inspections are preventative in nature. Under a government shutdown, however, OSHA will have to stop performing all inspections except those that involve workplace deaths or immediate dangers to workplace safety.

As to how long the shutdown will last is uncertain at this point. However, what is certain is that workplace safety and workplace injuries will continue to be a major concern while the politicians finalize a budget. 

Source: The Huffington Post, "Government Shutdown To Hit Labor Department Workplace Safety, EEOC Discrimination Investigations," Dave Jamieson, Oct. 1, 2013

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Contact Our Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Locations

Newburgh Office: Main Office
288 North Plank Road
Newburgh, NY 12550

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Newburgh Law Office Map

Poughkeepsie Office
3344 U.S. 9, 1st Floor
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Poughkeepsie Law Office Map

Goshen Office
55 Main Street
Goshen, NY 10924

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Goshen Law Office Map

Albany Office
18 Computer Drive West
Albany, NY 12208

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Albany Law Office Map

Kingston Office
303 Clinton Avenue, 2nd Floor
Kingston, NY 12401

Toll Free: 888-312-5516
Phone: 845-764-4494
Kingston Law Office Map