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Work Injuries Can Extend Beyond Normal Working HoursInjuries that are covered by workers’ compensation insurance extend beyond what many employees realize. For instance, you may believe that you needed to be working “on the clock” for an injury to be work-related. Your employer’s responsibility for your health can continue even after your official work hours. The workers’ compensation insurance provider will likely contest any injury claim that occurs outside of your paid hours or the workplace. This should not discourage you from filing for workers’ compensation benefits.

Qualifying for Benefits

Job requirements can dictate your actions beyond your documented working hours. Many employees are required or compelled to take their work home with them or perform work-related tasks after work. Even the requirement to travel to and from a work site can potentially expose you to danger. When wondering whether an injury is work-related, you should ask:

  • Was I performing a task that was required as part of my job?;
  • Was my employer benefitting from my actions?;
  • Was my employer aware or could my employer have been expected to be aware that I was at a work site during my free time?;
  • Does my employer own or maintain the property where the injury occurred?; and
  • Would I have been in the situation that caused my injury if not for my work?

If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, it is worth exploring whether your injury would qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.

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Study Says Big Employers Must Provide Better Workplace Safety DataThe Center for Safety and Health Sustainability recently released a study claiming that the world's top employers should be held to more rigorous standards in reporting workplace safety data. Rating organizations track how corporations perform on and comply with occupational health and safety standards. Many corporations voluntarily provide the data, but the study states that the self-reported data is inconsistent in its participation and accuracy. CSHS believes that OHS standards should be part of a business' sustainability plan because occupational hazards can cause work-related injuries and medical conditions that may require worker's compensation.

The Study

CSHS' study focused on employers that were listed in Corporate Knights' “Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations.” Researchers looked at OHS data from June to December 2016 that corporations had voluntarily posted on their websites. OHS data analysts consider several safety indicators, such as:

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Office Injuries Can Result in Workers' Compensation ClaimsWorkers' compensation claims often involve injuries that occur at jobs that require physical labor, such as construction projects. While employees in an office have safer jobs, they are susceptible to accidents that may cause injury. Employers may hold safety seminars and post flyers around the office to warn of potential hazards. A momentary lapse in judgment can lead to a disabling injury. Here are the most common office injuries and how to avoid them.

Falls

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce's Office of Human Resource Management, falls are the most common cause of disabling injuries in an office. Avoiding falls requires a combination of safe habits and awareness of your environment:

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McHenry County Workers' Compensation LawyerIllinois law requires all employers to carry workers' compensation insurance for employees in case they are injured while on the job. However, that liability often does not extend to injuries that happen at company-sponsored recreational events, such as picnics and sports leagues.

A shoulder injury from throwing a softball too hard at the company picnic or a torn ACL while playing for the company basketball team may lead to several doctor visits. Sometimes these events happen during company hours, but that does not mean you will be covered by workers' compensation. Illinois' Workers' Compensation Act and state court decisions say a company's liability is determined by whether the activity is considered voluntary, regardless of whether the employee is being paid while attending the event.

Illinois courts have often ruled against employee compensation for injuries that occur at voluntary events. However, there is a precedent for plaintiffs being awarded compensation. Success relies on a couple of factors:

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injured workers, Crystal Lake Workers' Compensation LawyerNot every person who is injured on the job, and as a result has to miss work in order to recover, has the financial security to comfortably recover without worrying about missed income. Fortunately, for an injured employee whose employer has secured a workers' compensation policy as required by law, receiving benefits is possible after the first three workdays following the injury.

Through temporary total disability benefits, soon after an employee is injured, he or she may receive benefits if the employee is deemed temporarily unable to return to work by his or her doctor, or if he or she is allowed to carry on light duty but are unable to do so because the employer cannot accommodate them.

Calculating the Benefit Amount

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