Massachusetts residents who are injured on the job have a lot to contend with. Sure, they might have to find a way to make ends meet without their weekly income, but they might also have to find a way to pay for their medical expenses. This can be extremely difficult, particularly when an injured worker is the sole wage-earner in a family. For this reason, it is imperative that those who have suffered a work-related injury seek out workers' compensation benefits.
Last week's blog post discussed employers' responsibilities as they relate to OSHA regulations. These regulations are meant to uphold certain standards to ensure workplace safety. Though many employers adhere to these requirements, many others fail to do so for a variety of reasons. Sometimes an employer is uninformed, sometimes it tries to cut costs by sacrificing safety, and sometimes an employer just outright refuses to comply with safety standards. When this happens, you could be put at serious risk of harm, the results of which could be devastating.
If people work in the state of Massachusetts, or any other state for that matter, then they are likely protected by regulations created and enforced by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, also known as OSHA. This agency creates responsibilities that employers must abide by in order to ensure their workers are kept safe. Failure to do so could result in fines, but also significant harm to employees.
Our last blog post discussed times when your workers' compensation benefits can be reduced. This is just one of a whole host of problems that can arise during the workers' compensation recovery process. Everything from an initial denial to complications during appeal and cessation of benefits occur far too often, leaving Massachusetts' residents stranded financially, not knowing where to turn.
Worker's compensation can be a real life-saver. Injured workers may struggle to survive financially when injured on the job, and workers' compensation can help cover lost wages and medical expenses. Yet, the workers' compensation system in Massachusetts is very complicated. Fully understanding it can be difficult, but is imperative to ensure individuals are receiving the fullest compensation to which they are entitled.
As with the answer to most legal question, it depends. Typically, your employer will not forward your workers' compensation claim to its insurance company until you have been unable to earn full wages for five days, due to an on-the-job injury. However, once those five days have passed, then your employer has seven days to report the situation to its insurance company. These seven days do not include holidays or Sundays. Once the insurance company receives notice of the injury, it then has 14 days to send your first check or deny the claim. If the claim is denied, then the insurance company must state why.
The Workers' Compensation System of Massachusetts provides important benefits to the workers of this state. These benefits are available to all workers who are injured while working, regardless of whether they were at fault for the accident.
No company should be allowed to place profits above the safety of its workers. Recently, Progressive Gourmet Inc., a wholesale food manufacturer with a facility in Wilmington, Massachusetts, was issued a number of violations following an inspection by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Reportedly, the investigation was prompted by a number of complaints the agency received from employees. These employees may have been concerned about suffering a work related injury due to the unsafe conditions of the plant.