What’s Covered Under Ohio Workers’ Compensation?

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Workers’ Compensation Scope: Do you know what may or may not be covered?

Understanding what is or is not covered under a workers’ compensation claim is very important – Particularly if you or a loved one has suffered an injury!  As a general rule, if your injury resulted from something work related, it would be covered under a workers’ compensation claim. Work related illnesses, such as occupational cancers, can also be covered under Ohio workers’ compensation laws.  Unfortunately, in some complicated situations an injury or illness can be difficult to prove or substantiate, particularly if your employer is less than supportive.

The Rules of Thumb for Workers’ Compensation in Ohio

  1. Typically, an injury at work that can be treated successfully with a general first aid kit is not an injury that is eligible for a workers’ compensation claim. This could be cuts, bruises, fall injuries – If it subsides and your injury is able to be treated successfully, then you may not file a claim.  However, it is important to remember that even something that may seem minor now can have serious repercussions down the road!
  2. Offsite injuries may also be covered under workers’ compensation claims. For instance, if you are driving from an appointment back to the office, or if you are sent on a work related errand, an injury would be covered.  If you are commuting to or from work, your injury would typically not be covered in the event of an accident or incident. This is known as the ‘Coming and Going Rule” The general rule here is if you are being paid to do what you are doing at the time an injury occurred then it would be covered under workers’ compensation.
  3. Illnesses and long term injuries, like carpel tunnel, may also be covered. Occupational illnesses can be covered in instances where a person is continually exposed to toxic chemicals such as if a fire fighter or miner.
  4. Mental and psychiatric conditions may also be covered. If you experienced a traumatic event and suffered PTSD – You may be eligible for worker’ compensation benefits.
  5. Voluntary events, like fitness challenges or group activities are typically not compensated in the event of an injury.
  6. Natural deterioration is not covered – but aggravating an existing or past injury may be covered under Ohio law. This is different for a pre-existing illness and the rule is that a disease will not likely be compensated if it was not contracted as a direct result of employment – aggravating or causing re-occurrence may not be covered.

Overall, it is very important that everyone understands what may or may not be covered in the scope of workers’ compensation.  It is not uncommon for many individuals to have suffered an injury or illness, only to fail to report it because they did not believe it was covered.

If you or a loved one was injured at work, you must contact my offices immediately. Worker’s compensation claims can be incredibly complicated! I will be there to support you, every step of the way.

I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373.

 

Top Ohio Workers’ Comp Myths

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Top Ohio Workers’ Comp Myths & Why You Need a Good Lawyer

Workers’ compensation law is complicated, to say the least.  As an injured individual, the last thing on your mind is likely to be related to policing your employer and making sure your claim is handled fairly.  Unfortunately, for long term impact, this must be a top priority. Having an experienced workers’ comp attorney can make all of the difference for your claim!

Myths in Ohio Workers’ Compensation cases are common. Understanding your rights and having an expert help is critical!

Myth #1: My place of employment is small and I do not get workers’ compensation insurance.

This is false! Ohio employers are required to provide compensation coverage for ALL employees as stated in ORC 4123.01.

Myth #2: I only worked a short time before I was injured and I am not covered.

Not true in Ohio. Every single employee must be covered, regardless of the duration of employment.

Myth #3: Few injury costs are eligible for compensation.

The facts: All injury costs related to lost wages and related to medical expenses can be compensated.

Myth #4: I feel pain at work so I am entitled to a compensation claim.

This is not true. You must prove your claim meets the requirements and is related to a specific injury or illness that occurred as a result of employment.

Myth #5: Most comp claims are fraudulent and an attempt to “stick it to the man”!

This is false. In 2014, the University of Michigan reported that only about 2% of all comp claims reported are fraudulent in nature.

Myth #6 My employer will file everything for my claim and handle all of the paperwork from here.

The truth is, your employer is only required to file the initial claim and notification.

Myth #7 My employer and their comp insurance will be fair.

Unfortunatelycompensation insurance works like any other insurance coverage. You cannot expect anyone to advocate for you!

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury at work, you must call my office now. The Ohio BWC can be very complicated and confusing. As your Ohio workers’ comp attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373.

Workers’ Compensation Fines – Profit Versus Safety

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When Big Fines Aren’t a Deterrent

Recent workers’ compensation fines are making the headlines, but is it really enough?  Unfortunately, every single day in Ohio and across the US, individuals are asked to perform work related duties that have very real dangers.  For many, common sense safety is enough – But unfortunately, accidents do happen! This is exactly why companies are required to have safety measures in place, to prevent tragedies in the first place. Lack of training and proper safety procedures can yield the ultimate price tag. Unfortunately big corporations pay the fines, and go about their day as if nothing happened.  This is unacceptable!

A recent story about a gentleman in Oregon is the perfect example.  An Ohio auto manufacturing company operating an Oregon facility was fined $570,000 as a result of safety violations that led to an employee suffering severe injuries on the job. Due to an unsafe machine, the 46 year old suffered the loss of his hand and partial loss of his arm, changing his life forever.  The simple fix?  Proper guards on the machine for which he was assigned to work.  This company clearly chose profit over safety!

Protecting Your Rights in a Work Related Injury

Every time a person goes to work there is a level of expectation regarding safety.  Sadly this wasn’t the case for the individual mentioned above; his life was forever changed.  The company in Ohio was fined $570,000 and the gentleman likely pursued a workers’ compensation claim for benefits and reparations. Nevertheless, nothing will replace his missing limbs!

Unfortunately, the claims process and injury recovery can be incredibly overwhelming.  If you allow your place of employment to determine the path to your claim and recovered benefits, your path may come up short!  Hiring an expert to navigate the complicated claims and benefits process is essential.

Your workers’ compensation claim for an injury such as loss of limb could include medical care, reconstructive surgeries, therapy, prosthetic, medication, lost wages and more.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury at work, you must call my office now. The Ohio BWC can be very complicated and confusing. As your Ohio workers’ comp attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373.

Hurt at Work – Now What? Top 3 Workers’ Comp Questions

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Navigating through a Workers’ Comp claim can be incredibly grueling.  I recommend contacting our offices to begin the claims process correctly from the start.

Here are the Top 3 Questions our Clients ask Regarding a Workers’ Comp Injury Claim.

1. What are the Statutes of Limitations for a Workers’ Comp Claim?

The date a work injury, work related illness or death occurred is incredibly important. This date is used to determine the statute of limitations for your case.  Properly documenting your case is critical to a successful Workers’ Comp claim.

Based on the date of occurrence, the statute of limitations for an injury claim or for occupational related disease/illness is as follows;

  • Two years after the date of disability (When you first became aware of, and/or treated for and/or quit work due to the illness)
  • Six months from a physician’s diagnosis
  • Two years after a death

2. What Constitutes a Claim of Workers’ Comp?

Top insurance reports indicate that the 5 most common types of work related injuries comprise over 70% of worker’s comp claims.

  1. Material handling
  2. Slips, trips and falls
  3. Object contact
  4. Tool accidents
  5. Overexertion / long term traumas from repeated use

Common worker’s compensation related injuries:

  • Strains and sprains
  • Cuts or wounds
  • Contusions
  • Inflammation
  • Breaks 

Unfortunately, this list is largely void of some of the more serious injuries – Although may be less common, the impact can be arguably more severe.

  • Amputations
  • Brain injuries
  • Eye or hearing
  • Shocks and electrocution
  • Crush injuries
  • Multilevel or high level falls

3. Payment Eligibility?

Once your claim has been approved or allowed by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, there are 5 common payment eligibility terms you may qualify for.

  1. Temporary injury compensation for time missed if you were completely unable to work for a certain amount of time.
  2. Payment to compensate for a reduced income if you are now restricted due to an injury.
  3. Percentage of partial disability payment (PPD) which is for long term impairment that was caused by an injury or work related illness.
  4. Permanent total disability (PTD) payment if you have been declared permanently and completely disabled.
  5. Lump sum settlements that are awarded as a settlement to a worker’s injury claim.

Determining where you fall in the payment eligibility pools and ensuring you have followed all proper protocol, is essential to any successful Workers’ Comp claim and subsequent award.

View more common questions at the Ohio BWC site, and call our offices today.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury at work, or suffers from a work related illness, you must call my office now. The Ohio BWC can be very complicated and confusing. As your Ohio workers’ comp attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373.

The Steps After a Workers’ Compensation Claim Appeal

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What Can I Expect After I File My Workers’ Compensation Claim Appeal?

Navigating the process of a workers’ compensation claim appeal can be an arduous task! Once your workers’ compensation claim appeal is filed, there are three appeal levels with the Ohio Industrial Commission.

Acquiring legal representation is highly recommended at this point in the process. Moving forward on a workers’ compensation claim can be a daunting, exhausting process without expert legal help in your corner. As your workers’ compensation attorney, I have the resources and experience necessary to advance your case and get the justice you deserve.

Here are 3 levels of workers’ compensation appeals and what to expect during the process:

Level 1— District Hearing

  • This will be heard by an attorney, so attorney representation is highly recommended.
  • Any information that supports the injured worker’s dispute will be presented here.
  • The OIC reviews this information and makes a decision to deny or approve the appeal.
  • If the appeal is denied, it will move into level 2.

Level 2—Staff Hearing

  • Injured workers and employers have a right by Ohio law to appeal the DHO’s decision.
  • Disputes are presented to the Staff Hearing Officer, or SHO.
  • It is then reviewed and if the appeal is denied, written appeals must be filed within 14 days of this decision.

Level 3—Commission Hearing

  • A Commission level hearing is granted on a discretionary basis, and not as a right through the appeals process.
  • Reaching the level of a Commission hearing with legal representation is strongly recommended
  • Commissioners can refuse the appeal or accept it

If you have just filed a workers’ compensation claim, or you are beginning the process of appeals, call my offices immediately.  The Ohio Workers’ Compensation Commission and the claim and appeals process is not an easy system to navigate. As your Ohio workers’ comp attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373.

 

Ohio Workplace Accidents—What to Do If Your Claim is Denied

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Many workers injured on the job do not initially think they will need an attorney’s help in filing a workers’ compensation claim. And, all too often, employers may even discourage workers from hiring legal representation because they simply want you to go into this alone.

It may not be until after your claim was denied by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation that you realize an attorney is necessary. What happens next? Does this mean a denied claim is simply a denied claim and nothing more can be done?

If you find yourself asking these questions, it may be time to call an experienced work injury lawyer.

You received a letter in the mail that your worker’s compensation claim has been denied by the bureau but you are not ready to call it quits. What happens next in this process?

An injured worker may file an appeal if the claim has been denied.

An employee has 14 days from the denial to file an appeal in writing or online. You or your attorney can file the appeal with the Ohio Industrial Commission online here.

Make sure to include all of the necessary information on your filed appeal.

This includes: Contact/mailing information, employer, workers’ compensation policy number, incident details, medical diagnosis, any medical documentation supporting your diagnosis, and any information regarding your disability.

Once the appeal is filed, there are three appeal levels with the OIC.

These 3 levels include the District Hearing, the Staff Hearing, and the Commission Hearing. Each of these levels requires a hearing with the Ohio Industrial Commission. It is highly recommended that the injured worker finds legal representation for this portion.

I cannot stress enough how important it is that anyone filing a workers’ compensation claim or appeal seeks an experienced attorney to represent them.

An attorney will be the best source to defend your rights as a worker and gain you fair compensation for your workplace injury or illness.

All too often I see employers taking advantage of their employees and leaving them high and dry. When this happens, it will not only affect the injured worker but will affect the families depending on them as well.

Do yourself and your family a favor by calling me today if you’ve suffered a work-related injury. As your Ohio workplace accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 855.800.0384.

Ohio is the 5th Highest State for Work-Related Fatalities

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The 2015 statistics for workplace deaths has been released, and Ohio made the unfortunate top 5 list. While workplace incidents have been on a slow decline, fatalities have risen both statewide and nationwide in the last few years.

According to the 2015 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report, there were 202 workplace fatalities in Ohio last year.

Nationwide there were 4,836 work injury fatalities in 2015. And,

The number 18 may not seem like a big number, but it is devastating when we comprehend this as 18 Ohioan lives lost. Out of the 168 hours in a week, we spend an average of 40 of those hours at work.

Workers should feel safe during their time spent at work, but even with safety precautions taken there are certain work industries with higher risks for injury.

Here are the report’s highest fatality-risk occupations in 2015 nationwide:

  • Transportation-related fatalities: 2,054 deaths (tractor trailer drivers accounted for 745 of these deaths)
  • Construction industry: 937 deaths
  • Slip & falls: 800 deaths

If you have experienced a workplace injury or have lost a loved one to a work accident, there are several steps you should take.

The most important is to make sure your employer is aware of the incident so it is documented, and you receive medical treatment immediately. If you feel your workplace safety is threatened, you may want to consider reporting any safety hazards to OSHA.

Contact me immediately if you or a loved one was hurt in a workplace accident. You and your family owe it to yourselves to find an attorney who will fight for your justice.

As your Ohio workplace accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373

Ohio Workers’ Compensation—Firefighters Diagnosed With Cancer Due to Job are Now Covered

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Several weeks ago the Ohio firefighter cancer bill was passed, but not until recently was the bill signed into law by Ohio Governor John Kasich.

On January 4, 2017 Ohio became the 35th state to sign in legislation protecting firefighters diagnosed with cancer due to their risky occupations.

Firefighters and their families have been fighting for this kind of protection for almost 20 years; Ohio workers’ compensation will now offer medical coverage for specific types of cancer related to the toxins and chemicals they face on duty.

What will this mean for our brave Ohio firemen and women?

Under the new law, renamed the Palumbo Act, firefighters will receive Workers’ Compensation benefits, additional money for medical costs relating to a cancer diagnosis,  and survivor benefits for dependents.

There are, however, several exemptions from this new law. Firefighters filing worker’s compensation are exempt from this if they are: 75+ years old, smoke cigarettes, and have served less than three years.

Below are the confirmed cancer diagnoses for firefighters covered under Ohio Workers’ Compensation:

  • Brain cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Prostate cancer
  • Lung cancer

If you or a family member have been diagnosed with any of these cancers and work in this field, you may want to consult with an experienced workers compensation lawyer. Call me today for your free consultation, and I will fight for the justice you and your family deserve.

As your Ohio workplace accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373

Ohio Workers’ Compensation: Signing the Firefighter Cancer Bill into Law

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Working in high-risk occupations brings even more chance of work injuries and illnesses. In some fields, it is almost unavoidable. Police and firefighters constantly put themselves in harm’s way to keep others safe. Sadly, in some states workers’ compensation programs may not fully cover these men and women.

Several groups, including the Youngstown Professional Fire Fighters I.A.F.F. Local 312, are pushing for the state of Ohio to pass Senate Bill 27.

Senate Bill 27 would allow all Ohio firefighters to be covered under workers’ compensation insurance “if or when” they become disabled by cancer due to their job conditions in hazardous atmosphere.

According to a study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 68% of firefighters get cancer contrary to 22% of the general public.

The numbers relating to specific cancer found in firemen are as follows:

  • Multiple Myeloma Cancer: 53% greater risk to firemen
  • Testicular Cancer: 102% greater risk to firemen
  • Brain Cancer: 39% greater risk to firemen
  • Skin Cancer: 32% greater risk to firemen
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma: 51% greater risk to firemen

Overall, the men and women in this career have a much higher risk contracting cancer but the state of Ohio does not currently provide workers’ compensation benefits to those affected by these illnesses.

36 other states already have workers’ compensation cancer laws in place. Ohio is 1 of 16 states that had failed to recognize the link between this occupation and cancer risks.

The firemen and families affected by their illnesses have been fighting to pass the bill for months now. As of last week, both the Ohio House and Senate have passed Bill 27 but it will not become effective until Governor John Kasich signs it within the next two weeks.

If you suffer a workplace injury or illness and want to know your rights to collect workers’ compensation, call me today for a free consultation.

As your Ohio workplace accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 877.944.4373

6 Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits You May Be Entitled To

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When you are hurt on the job and file a Worker’s Compensation claim, it can quickly become stressful and disorienting to deal with both the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and your employer.

Before diving in head first, you should consider hiring an experienced attorney to handle your claim. There are many legalities and key components that you should become familiar with, whether you hire an attorney or not.

One component being the most significant reason in filing a work injury claim—the various benefits your employer’s worker’s compensation insurance may offer.

Ohio Workers’ Compensation benefits are meant to assist the injured worker, but there are several different rewards.

Here are 6 benefits that may be available following a workplace injury:

  1. Wage Loss– Paid to the injured worker for reduced wages.
  2. Medical Care– may include medications, hospital treatment, doctor visits, rehabilitation, etc.
  3. Permanent Partial Disability [or Schedule Loss]- Injured worker is compensated for permanent damages including loss of vision/hearing, loss of use, amputation, and immobility of joints from a trauma.
  4. Permanent Total Disability– Also known as PTD; this benefit compensates workers with a permanent total disability that prevents them from working. This includes the loss of earning capacity and could last for the individual’s lifetime.
  5. Temporary Total Compensation– Also known as TT; the worker is compensated when totally disabled from work for a short amount of time.
  6. Death Benefits– If a worker dies from a workplace accident or disease, the deceased’s dependents may receive benefits.

Each claim will have different results and offer different benefits based on the circumstances of a worker’s injuries.

The benefits as mentioned above are only a few offered through workers’ compensation, but there are many more that your attorney can discuss with you.

If you’ve been hurt on the job, you will need an experienced attorney who is familiar with the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. Call me today for a free consultation- it is in your and your family’s best interest to see what benefits you are eligible for!

As your Ohio workplace accident attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 1 (877) 944-4373.