Statistics compiled by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics place Georgia in the top 20 US states with the highest workplace fatality rates. The latest value calculated for 2021 – 4.0 – is slightly lower compared with the previous year (4.3 in 2020). Still, this means that workers comp injuries are still happening in the most active industries in our state.
Here, we take a closer look at the most common work injuries our Atlanta workers comp lawyers deal with.
1. Sprains, Strains and Tears
Muscle, joint, and ligament injuries represent a large percentage of workers comp cases. They can occur either as a result of a sudden accident (a slip and fall or falling from a height) or as a cumulative result of constant wear and tear.
Many injured workers are able to document the accident with photos, CCTV camera footage, or testimonies from coworkers. However, proving that repetitive movements and overuse lead to an inflammatory condition of the muscle or joint is another issue.
Insurance adjusters will often cite the fact that you could have developed this injury as a result of overuse at home, doing chores, or enjoying an active hobby. An experienced lawyer will know how to prove that, in fact, it is a work-related injury.
2. Bone Fractures
A bone fracture can keep an injured employee out of work for weeks or even months. It all depends on the location, extent, and severity of the fracture. Construction and agriculture workers are at higher risk of suffering these injuries because they work with heavy machinery.
A malfunction or error in operation can cause them to get hit or crushed under the respective machinery. In this situation, it is important to remember that workers’ compensation is not fault-based. Even if you were completely at fault for the accident, you still deserve compensation for medical costs and replacement wages.
So, do not let your employer intimidate you into not filing a claim. Talk to an experienced Atlanta workers comp attorney to start protecting your rights instead.
3. Electrical, Chemical, and Thermal Burns
Burn injuries are categorized depending on their severity.
- 1st-degree burn: minor injury affecting the outer layer of the skin. It causes redness and moderate pain
- 2nd-degree burn: both the first and the second layers of the skin are affected. The most common symptoms are blisters, severe pain and swelling
- 3rd-degree burn: this type of burn reaches down to the fat layer under the skin. The affected area looks blackened, with a leathery aspect. Also, this type of burn can damage nerves, resulting in numbness.
Burns in the workplace can be caused by exposure to:
- Open fire
- Hot liquids or vapors
- Live electrical wires
- Chemical substances: strong acids, gasoline, lye paint thinner.
4. Spine, Neck, and Head Injuries
These are among the most severe types of workers comp injuries, including spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries. The injured workers are often left with permanent disabilities and impairments.
In these situations, it is crucial to have an experienced lawyer on your side to fight for permanent total or partial disability benefits. These are long-term benefits paid to workers who are unable to obtain gainful employment due to their disability.
5. Exposure to Dangerous Substances
Many workers are exposed to dangerous chemicals in the course of their daily work. The best-known example is exposure to asbestos in the case of construction or remodeling workers who need to remove old insulation from buildings.
This substance – used at a large scale during the 1970s – was later proven to cause cancer, especially mesothelioma (lung cancer).
Another frequent type of exposure is to herbicides and pesticides, such as RoundUp and Paraquat.
Call Our Atlanta Workers Comp Lawyers!
After reporting your accident to the employer and seeking medical care, the next thing you must do is call an Atlanta workers comp lawyer. Even if your case appears simple and obvious, the insurance adjuster assigned to your case will still try to devalue or deny your claim.
We offer each new client a free case review so that you can understand your legal options under no obligations. Call us now at 470-518-5026 !