Articles Tagged with Boston work accident lawyer

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Workers’ compensation is designed as no-fault system within which it should be fairly easy for an injured worker to obtain benefits for lost wages and medical expenses. In practice, however, things are not always so easy since we are not only dealing with employers, but with workers’ compensation insurance companies. Like many insurers, workers’ compensation insurers have a habit of minimizing payouts by denying and delaying claims to the fullest extent possible.

This issue was recently weighed by journalists for the Civil Beat Honolulu. Writers describe a workers’ compensation system that is in many ways broken.

Boston Workers' CompAccording to the report, an injured worker who has been trapped in a bureaucratic nightmare that is the workers’ compensation system there since he was injured on-the-job. He was working on a construction project in which he was required to handle wet concrete. He was on a raised platform with a concrete pouring hose when the weather turned bad. Due to wet conditions, he fell to the ground and severely damaged his knee. He was in incredible pain. This on the job accident occurred 10 years ago, and he’s still fighting with the workers’ compensation insurer. Continue reading

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When we think of workplace injuries in terms of Boston workers’ compensation cases, we are generally dealing with some type of accident. In many cases, it is simply an accident that was not anyone’s fault.  In some cases, the accident is actually the result of an employer’s negligence.  There is really is no distinction with respect to workers’ compensation cases because Chapter 152 of the Massachusetts General Laws (M.G.L) established a no-fault system.  There is however, a third category of workplace injuries where one worker is physically assaulted by an other employee, customer, or third-party criminal.

Boston workplace Injuries These situations happen more frequently than you might assume.  There are a lot of assaults between employees in jobs in Boston and across the nation. While there are the high profile cases involving active shooter situations that occur from time to time, we are generally talking about one worker punching another.  Contrary to what many people think and see in the movies, a single punch can result in serious injury or even death. Continue reading

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When a worker is killed on the job, many do not realize that workers’ compensation is still the appropriate – and maybe only – remedy for surviving family members to obtain compensation for medical expenses, funeral expenses and lost wages. Pursuant to Chapter 152, of the Massachusetts General Laws (M.G.L), all of these types of recovery are available, however there is no possibility to recovery damages for pain and suffering unless there is a third-party defendant. Examples of this would be:

  • A worker killed in a car accident caused by another negligent driver;
  • A worker killed in a construction accident wherein the owner of the property (or other party aside from employer) was negligent;
  • A worker killed in an accident involving a defective product or defective vehicle.

work accidents BostonAccording to a recent news article from the Boston Globe, a man was killed in South Boston when he was on top of a crane. The construction site accident occurred around rush hour in front of crowds of passersby and other construction workers. Continue reading

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A construction worker was recently seriously injured when he was hit by a heavy beam while working a job site in New York. Authorities reported the beam was suspended about two stories off the ground by riggers who were working on a the construction of a fairly large building.

workers' compensation lawyer BostonThe investigation reveals that the beam was being hoisted up when he cables securing came lose and the beam dropped.  Investigators believe that one of the critical support cables may have snapped causing the remaining support cables to come lose from the beam.

When it comes to construction accident injuries, workers’ compensation is an issue that should be carefully explored because often, such workers are classified as “independent contractors.” That could mean one wouldn’t be entitled to benefits. However, employee misclassification happens all too often, and shouldn’t be overlooked as a possibility. Further, injured construction site workers may have grounds to assert a third-party liability claim for additional compensation.

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In some of the worst types of on the job accidents, claimants are killed or suffer a severe personal injury.  A severe personal injury in a Boston workplace accident can include the amputation or loss of function in a hand, arm, leg, foot, finger, or toe.

shoulder injury lawyerIn addition to the standard workers’ compensation benefits for lost wages and medical bills, the Massachusetts General Laws (MGL) Section 152, Chapter 36 provides for a single lump sum award for specific injuries.  This can include various types of injuries such as loss of limbs or extremities. Continue reading

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There is no need to prove any fault on behalf of an employer to collect workers’ compensation in Boston, and it would not matter if there was fault on the part of the employer.  The system was set up to be no-fault.  All that is necessary is to establish  that claimant was injured on the job and claimant was an employee at the time of the workplace accident.

An employee in Boston workers’ compensation cases

work accidents Boston In the Massachusetts workers’ compensation act there is a definitions sections as there is with most other chapters in the Massachusetts General Laws (MGL).  In Chapter 152, Section 1, we find this definitions section. Pursuant to section 1, an employee is generally defined as a person who is hired under a contract to perform services for another. There are various exceptions such as taxi cab drivers, but for the most part, this issues involves whether injured worker is a contractor or an employee. Continue reading

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In a typical workers’ compensation case in Boston, claimant is working and gets injured.  Once claimant is injured, he or she should immediately inform a supervisor of the workplace accident.  This is essential because if the supervisor doesn’t report the accident there will be no record of claimant being injured. When claimant applies for workers’ compensation benefits, employer’s workers’ compensation insurance company may deny the claim for not being put on notice.

Boston work accident lawyerPursuant to Chapter 152 of the Massachusetts General Laws, workers’ compensation insurance company has between 15 and 30 days to either pay benefits for lost wages and medical bills or to deny the claim.  If a claim is denied, claimant must file an appeal with the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA).  Continue reading

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Bone injuries that occur while on the job can lead to a considerable amount of time out of work, as well as some complex litigation in a Boston workers’ compensation case.

Common types of bone injuries include:

  • Stable fracture
  • Open/ compound fracture
  • Transverse fracture
  • Oblique fracture
  • Comminuted fracture

In workers’ compensation cases, the most common causes of bone fractures are trauma and overuse.

workers' compensation lawyer

The fact that doctors have the ability to make such a precise diagnosis is good news for their patients in terms of eventually healing and getting back to work. However, workers’ compensation insurance companies are often not on the same page.

Independent Medical Exams

 

In many workers’ compensation cases, claimant will be treated by his or her doctors and then those records are sent to the insurance company.  Insurer will review these records and then probably send one of their own doctors from company’s list of preferred physicians. Although this doctor is referred to as an “independent examiner,” he or she is paid by the insurer to review the medical records, and in many cases, perform his or her own quick examination on the claimant. Continue reading

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In most injuries that happen to employees on the job in Boston, the worker will miss some time at work, receive medical treatment and then return to work.  However, there are some cases of on-the-job injuries where the claimant suffers a permanent loss of function to a particular body part, organ, or sense.

stethascopeIn some cases, the loss of function will fall under a category known as “Specific Injuries,” as defined in Chapter 152, Section 36 of the Massachusetts General Laws (MGL) , which is the workers’ compensation act for the Commonwealth.  Continue reading

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In Baker v. Workers Compensation Appeals Board, a case from the California Court of Appeal, claimant was initially injured while working as a construction laborer. While this case deals with a lump sum payment of benefits and his disability rating, this would be a good time to discuss a major issue that often comes up in cases in Boston in which construction workers are injured.

Employee v. Independent Contractor

Boston workers' CompensationIn order to collect workers’ compensation benefits, you must be an employee, and you must have suffered an on-the-job injury or suffered from a work-related illness. However, as we have said in various other posts on this Boston workers’ compensation blog, while you can get workers’ compensation for an illness that is due to your occupation, the vast majority of workers’ compensation cases involve accidents that occur on the job. This is not to say that there are never any workers’ compensation benefits paid for work-related illness. Continue reading