OSHA is the Occupation Safety and Health Administration, which regulates what is and is not safe for a work environment. If you think that your injury came from an OSHA violation, you need a workers’ compensation lawyer on your side.
Accident injuries often have to navigate tricky legal waters, and dealing with OSHA does add an element complexity to your case.
Knowing OSHA Requirements
Osha regulations are meant to assure workers of safe working conditions. However, their wording uses the same legalese that makes the entire worker’s compensation process frustrating.
Although Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has complicated wording and issues with interpretation, the goals of their regulations can be summed up to:
- Proper employee training programs for preventable accidents.
- Recording, reporting, and posting injuries.
- Proper response to fatalities and serious injuries.
- Emergency planning for faster response.
- Identifying hazards and implementing preventative measures.
- Upholding an ongoing commitment to safe working conditions.
OSHA covers everything from handling unattended spills to working in high-rise environments. They require many industries to follow certain procedures and to uphold statutory codes. They generally offer clear definitions of responsibility.
More than anything else, what OSHA clearly lays out is the difference between preventable and unpreventable accidents.
If an accident takes place in a work environment, OSHA may or may not become involved. In some industries, such as the construction industries, OSHA will respond to nearly every accident. However, in other industries such as the food and beverage industry, OSHA won’t become involved without someone contacting them with a concern.
OSHA Compliance and Worker’s Compensation
Workers compensation and OSHA compliance often fit hand in hand. When it comes to handling personal injury claims, it boils down to one person was negligent, and it led to another person’s injury.
Worker’s compensation is insurance that covers accidents in the workplace. However, they don’t cover everything. First, a representative from the insurance company will review your claim and decide if you were within your employer’s policies and acted in a safe manner.
Many approved worker’s compensation claims include an OSHA violation on some well. If you were an accident victim, then you need to show that your employer was negligent. This is usually part of your original claim form.
On your claim form, you’ll explain what happened to cause your injury, and during that point, you may realize that you were working in unsafe work conditions. Speak with your worker’s compensation lawyer to find out if there is an apparent OSHA violation involved in your claim.
If you have the chance to make a difference in working conditions, take action. File a complaint with OSHA to initiate an investigation. Employees injured at their workplaces are often the ones to take the most action and provide the most compelling proof to OSHA.
You can use an OSHA violation to support your claim and to show that your worker’s compensation claim deserves approval.
Common OSHA Violation Related Injuries
Injuries from falls and being struck by an object are among the most common for worker’s compensation claims. Especially within the construction industry, a fall of more than 6-feet fall into OSHA domain. Additionally, falling objects is an OSHA concern as well.
Employers have a duty to provide safety precautions for their employees. When systems are not in place, injuries and accidents are sure to happen.
Another common OSHA violations that result in serious injury include the lack of protective systems for equipment handling. Being caught in equipment can lead to the loss of limb and lifelong disability. Getting caught in equipment is also entirely preventable.
Contact a Washington DC Worker’s Compensation Lawyer
When you’re ready to move forward with your worker’s compensation claim contact a worker’s compensation lawyer, it’s easy for an insurance company to make it seem like the accident was just an unfortunate event. But many accidents are preventable, and many are OSHA violations.
Of course, your employer’s insurance company wants to minimize the damage and avoid you having OSHA on your side of the claim. They will discourage you from reporting an issue to OSHA. Don’t’ let them intimidate you or downplay your injury.
Call the law offices of Ashcraft and Gerel for help in managing your case. They can walk you through the process of seeing an approved doctor within your employer’s insurance coverage and follow you through completion of your case. A worker’s compensation lawyer can explain how an OSHA violation impacts your claim and what it will mean for the resolution of your case.