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Eau Claire Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Trucking safety plays a vital role in keeping drivers safe

Driving a truck is a dangerous job. The trucking industry is a place that currently has many open positions. People are not turning to this industry as quickly as they once did due to the risks they face.

Interestingly, the Bureau of Labor Statistics believes that job growth will continue to grow in the trucking sector by around 21 percent over the next decade. By 2020, it's expected that there will be over 330,000 new trucking jobs. These jobs can be filled, but it's hard to find workers who want to continue under the conditions that many truck drivers face in today's world.

Workplace stress decreases workplace safety

Stress comes at you from every direction. You feel it when your bills come in the mail. You feel it when your spouse needs you to do something and you just don't have the time. You feel it when your kids have band practice, sports practice, drama club, school science fairs and a thousand other activities.

Some put it very bleakly."Life is full of stress," said one doctor. "If you're not stressed, you're dead."

Truckers can face serious hazards at work

Some people think that trucking is an easy profession. They think that these men and women just sit around and drive all day long. While it is true that the primary duty of the trucker is operating the rig, there are some very real hazards that these individuals face.

For injured truckers, there is almost always a tough road to recovery ahead. The nature of the job doesn't allow for them to work unless they are in the best shape possible. Even injuries that wouldn't hurt other workers' ability to perform their job duties can keep a trucker out of the cab. Here are some points to know about injuries that truckers might face:

You have a right to workers' compensation if you're hurt at work

You suffered a serious injury on the job. You had been focusing on a task when a coworker dropped a piece of equipment above you. Even though you had a hardhat on, it didn't protect you from the rapidly dropping item. The impact cracked the hat open and left you with a concussion. Yes, it could have been worse, but still, you have a serious injury to contend with.

You told your boss what happened, and he refused to start a claim. You even went to the hospital with a coworker after it happened, because he was worried that you didn't look okay. Your boss has claimed you're unable to file for compensation, but you know better than that.

Forklift injuries change lives and cause disabilities

Imagine heading to your job, just like any other day. Today is different, though, because a new employee decided to get on the forklift to move pallets for the manager. The problem is that the employee didn't have the right training, and he caused the pallets to become unstable. As a result, you suffered a blow to the head because of the items that fell from above.

Forklift injuries may be severe, and they can result in life-changing disabilities. Forklift injuries can include crushing injuries, strains, sprains, lacerations and other serious wounds.

These 3 benefits make workers' compensation important

As an employee in Wisconsin, you know that you have a right to a safe work environment. You should also be aware that your employer should carry either private insurance or a workers' compensation policy in case of employees' injuries. While there are a few classes of employees who are not covered by workers' compensation in Wisconsin, like domestic servants, volunteers and some farm employees, on the whole, most people should be entitled to compensation if they're injured.

There are several benefits to receiving workers' compensation after an injury. These are just a few you may be entitled to. If your claim is denied, your attorney may be able to assist you with an appeal.

Were you denied benefits for being an independent contractor?

Let's say you show up to work at your construction job every day and work carefully alongside your colleagues - who are painters, carpenters and roofers. It looks like you're all employees together, and the same boss pays your salary. The thing is, you're classified as an "independent contractor," but coworkers are "employees."

As a result, when you fell off a scaffold and broke your leg, your employer and its insurance company tried to use the fact that you're an independent contractor as a reason not to pay for your medical care.

Are Menards Drivers Independent Contractors?

Menards, a large home-improvement retail chain based in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, is the target of a federal complaint by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), accusing the superstore of misclassifying delivery drivers as independent contractors. Independent contractors do not enjoy the same workplace protections as employees, and would not, for example, be able to claim workers' compensation benefits after being injured on the job.

An administrative hearing is scheduled for April 4 in Minneapolis.

4 things you need to know about workers' comp

You retired last year, ready to have the easy life and get back to the woodworking project that's been in the garage for the last 10 years. Everything was great the first few months, until the boredom set in.

Your social security isn't quite enough to make you as comfortable as you would like, and since you were running out of things to do, it seemed like a good idea to pick up some part-time work at the local furniture store.

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