If you are injured on the job in Oklahoma, it is important to understand your rights and to make sure you are properly treated for your injuries. Business Insurance details the recent case that has clarified the laws regarding who chooses the medical provider to treat an employee who is injured at work. This can affect reimbursement for services, so it is especially important if you are already dealing with the financial ramifications of an injury that occurred on the job.
It's a dodge used by some unscrupulous construction businesses in Tulsa and elsewhere: misclassifying employees. Like most shady business dealings, it is done to enhance a business's bottom line at the expense of employees. An employee misclassified as independent contractor can be denied unemployment insurance and other benefits. Perhaps the most important benefit that they can lose is when they are injured and need workers' compensation, the U.S. Department of Labor says.
Oklahoma workers who have never suffered an injury in a workplace accident may be unsure how to proceed with workers' compensation claims when needed. Gaining the necessary information about the level of coverage offered by the fund, and the required steps to take if workplace injuries are suffered may protect workers and their families financially. Typically, workers are covered for both physical and mental injuries caused by work-related accidents.
Utility workers and those working in construction zones in Oklahoma often risk their lives. They are sometimes the victims of workplace injuries, and although motorists are expected to reduce their traveling speed and be on the lookout for workers, some drivers seem to be oblivious to the potential dangers when they approach these areas. A driver in another state may be facing charges after she caused injuries to several utility workers.
Oklahoma workers in the building, roofing and construction industries may be aware of the hazards of their occupations. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration says fall accidents are the leading cause of fatalities in the construction industry. Unfortunately, some employers show complete disregard for the safety of their employees, leading to severe workplace injuries and deaths.
When workers' compensation laws initially became effective, they was touted as an equal exchange between employers and workers. According to the law, workers who suffered workplace injuries are, in general, barred from filing lawsuits against their employers. Employers must provide employees with workers' compensation insurance coverage. Injured workers may pursue claims for benefits for medical care, related costs and lost wages to enable them to provide for their families.
Oklahoma workers in food industries where they are exposed to refrigeration systems that work with ammonia should be informed of the health risks they are facing on a daily basis. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently cited a meat-processing facility for seven serious safety violations that could lead to workplace injuries. The citations include four violations related to anhydrous ammonia management.
Workers in all industries face safety hazards everyday; however, some industries have specific areas that require compliance with additional safety regulations. Employers in Oklahoma and elsewhere whose employees work in areas where chemicals and heavy machinery are present have to comply with specific safety regulations that are prescribed by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Some employers disregard these regulations in order to speed up processes and improve profitability, but such shortcuts often lead to workplace injuries that end up having an adverse effect on the company's bottom line.
Oklahoma employers are obligated to carry workers' compensation for all of their workers. Workers' compensation could be seen as a type of bargain between employers and their employees. It creates a balance between company owners and workers, whereby employers agree to pay compensation for workplace injuries, and workers give up their rights to sue their employers, except in cases of gross negligence.
According to the strict safety regulations prescribed by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Oklahoma employers are responsible for the safety of their workers. They are expected to inform workers about the safety hazards of their jobs and provide protective equipment as a preventative measure to help avoid workplace injuries. When workers are expected to operate machines, safety guards should be in place to avoid workers being pulled into dangerous equipment.