Articles Tagged with COnstruction Accident Attorney

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Medical Records and Your Workers’ Compensation Casesteve_z


Insufficient medical documentation is, by far, the most common reason that workers’ compensation claims are denied or delayed. This is true at all stages of a workers’ comp. case.

Steve Zoni 508-822-2000

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steve_z

When an injured workers misses time from work, workers’ compensation laws provide a system of wage replacement. In other words, workers’ compensation insurance companies must pay the injured workers a percentage of his or her former wages. It is often said that workers’ compensation is meant to compensate injured workers for having lost the ability to earn wages.

Generally, a totally disabled worker in Massachusetts is entitled to sixty percent of the former wage, and a person who is partially disabled is entitled to forty-five percent.

Often, issues arise when determining what the employee’s former wage is. The former wage, known as the “average weekly wage,” is generally determined by taking all compensation paid to the employee during his or her last fifty two weeks of work before the injury, divided by fifty two.

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3668152_1Sean C. Flaherty       508-822-2000

If you or someone you know owns their own business in Massachusetts, it is important to know  several things regarding Worker’s Compensation coverage. Sole proprietors and partners in a partnership are not automatically covered under worker’s compensation insurance.

A recent Department of Industrial Accidents decision denied coverage to a man who operated a home construction company. As a sole proprietor, he, alone, was the only person working for the business. Because he had a worker’s compensation insurance policy, he assumed he was covered. However, the policy only covered his employees in the event that he decided to hire people in the future. Given the seriousness of his injury, the man is now in an unfortunate situation.

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aileen1Aileen C. Bartlett

508-822-2000

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently cited a Massachusetts excavation company for willful and serious violations of excavation safety standards.  The Wakefield contractor faces over $144,000 in proposed fines following an OSHA inspection of a Milton work site last August.  According to OSHA’s Braintree office, the workers were installing water mains in a trench over six feet deep, with no cave-in protection or means of egress. The workers were also exposed to falling debris that accumulated above the trench.

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3668148_1by Kevin P. DeMello, esq.

Anyone who works in the construction industry knows that it is common for multiple contractors to be on a job site at any one time. Because so many workers are doing so many different things at once, a construction job site can be a chaotic and dangerous place for workers. There are deadlines to meet and every contractor wants to impress the people who hired them by being on time and under budget. Often, these priorities pressure contractors to take short cuts when it comes to safety. Things like proper housekeeping, regular safety inspections, and safety enforcement sometimes take a back seat to more pressing concerns of schedules and deadlines.

As sub-contractors are always vying for the approval of the people that hired them, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) puts the ultimate duty to make sure that a job site is safe on the general contractor. OSHA calls this duty non-delegable, meaning when it comes to safety, the bucks stops on the general contractor’s desk. Often times the general contractor tries to shift this burden to the sub-contractors or the workers themselves, but OSHA requires that the general contractor bear this responsibility ultimately because they are the ones in the best position to make sure that the job site is safe. Therefore, if an accident happens on a job site, the general contractor often bears some part of the blame.

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by Kevin P. DeMello, esq.

3668148_1
When someone has a potentially disabling workplace injury, there’s a difficult labyrinth of legal issues to navigate. Most people soon learn that following a workplace injury, there is typically workers compensation coverage available to pay for medical bills and some percentage of lost wages. However, right from the start, things get complicated. How much are you entitled to? How do the medical bills get processed, and what about co-payments and medications? The answers to these questions are often unique to your particular situation.

If your injury is permanently disabling, meaning that you are disabled from any type of gainful employment due to your injuries, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI. Often times people do not realize that SSDI is available until their doctor suggests it. However, if you are receiving workers compensation benefits, any SSDI benefits you are entitled to are typically offset by the amount of your workers compensation benefits. There are strategies that a good workers compensation attorney can use to reduce this offset and maximize your potential benefits, but these strategies vary from case to case.

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Social Media Is Becoming a Workers’ Comp Investigative Tool

Many companies are beginning to capitalize on the value of social media as a recruitment tool. But it can also be useful for other purposes, as long as you don’t overstep legal and administrative boundaries. And one is workers’ comp investigations.


For example, if an employee who files a back injury claim and has strict lifting restrictions posts a photo on Facebook of himself lifting a heavy barbell, that’s a red flag. There doesn’t even need to be a photo involved — an employee who describes his skiing trip while collecting workers’ comp may be setting himself up for trouble.

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