Were you hurt in an on-the-job slip (or trip) and fall accident? You're not alone. Slips, trips, and falls lead to a surprising number of workers’ compensation claims each year. In fact, in 2018, they accounted for more than a quarter (27 percent) of nonfatal injury claims that resulted in missed days from work, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
What makes these accidents so common and serious? Slip and trip hazards exist in virtually every type of workplace—from construction sites to office buildings. Sadly, under the right—or, rather, the wrong—circumstances, they can cause devastating injuries, some of which may require extensive treatment and keep you out of work indefinitely. Here's what you need to know about New York Workers' Compensation benefits for slips, trips, and falls—and how our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys can handle your claim from start to finish.
Slip, Trip, and Fall Hazards in the Workplace
Whether your job has you indoors, outdoors, or on the road, here are some of the most common hazards linked to workplace slips, trips, and falls:
- Uneven, broken, or warped flooring
- Loose or torn carpeting
- Insufficient or non-existent warning signs
- Parking lot potholes
- Cracked sidewalks
- Wet, icy, or snowy surfaces
- Loose rugs or mats
- Freshly mopped or waxed floors
- Spilled liquids
- Debris or cords in walkways
- Cables, cords, or wires stretched across the floor
Injuries Associated With On-the-Job Falls
Think the consequences of slips, trips, and falls on the same level couldn't possibly be that serious? Think again. While some slip-and-fall victims sustain only bumps and bruises, others suffer significant and life-altering injuries as a result of these seemingly minor accidents. Common workplace fall injuries include:
- Fractured and broken bones (commonly hands, wrists, forearms, kneecaps, ankles, elbows, and hips)
- Head and brain injuries (such as concussions and traumatic brain injuries, also known as TBIs)
- Neck, shoulder, and back injuries (including strained muscles, herniated discs, torn ligaments, and damaged vertebra)
- Spinal cord damage (which may result in varying degrees of temporary or permanent paralysis)
Though soft-tissue injuries, fractures, and other minor to moderate slip-and-fall injuries heal with time and treatment, others—like TBIs and paralysis—often require ongoing medical care and can permanently affect your ability to work. Fortunately, you may be entitled to workers' compensation benefits.
Types of Workers' Compensation Benefits
If you're hurt while carrying out the duties of your employment, you're likely covered by workers' compensation—a no-fault insurance system carried by the vast majority of employers. New York workers' comp provides the following benefits for employees injured in slip-and-fall or trip-and-fall accidents.
- All reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to the workplace accident
- Partial wage replacement payments totaling two-thirds of your average weekly wage
How long workers' comp indemnity payments last depends on the type and extent of your injury.
Protecting Your Rights After a Workplace Accident
Don't forfeit your right to collect workers' compensation benefits for an on-the-job slip and fall. After your accident:
- Seek immediate medical treatment
- Ensure your injuries are well documented—in your medical records, and with photos of your injuries relevant conditions at the scene of the accident
- Report the accident and your injuries to your employer as soon as possible
- Consult a skilled workers' compensation attorney about your slip-and-fall case
Let Our Experienced Attorneys Handle Your New York Workers' Compensation Claim
Despite being a no-fault insurance system designed to compensate employees for injuries sustained on the job, obtaining the workers' compensation benefits you need and deserve can be challenging. Fortunately, we can help. At O'Connor Law PLLC, our team of adept workers' compensation lawyers helps injured workers like you recover fair benefits. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a free initial consultation. Don't delay, as missing key deadlines can irreparably harm your case.