Tag Archives: Kansas Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Kansas Workers Compensation Lawyer Discusses Workplace Safety Tips for Kansas Employers

In the four decades since OSHA’s creation, the rate of workplace accidents has decreased dramatically.  Worker injuries and deaths are down significantly, from approximately 38 worker deaths in 1970 to 13 a day in 2011.  The increased workplace safety has not been the result of luck; rather, it comes after much hard work and vigilance.  Creating and maintaining a safe workplace is no easy task.  By creating a culture of safety within the workplace, your organization can flourish as an enjoyable and safe place to work.

  • Provide clear work instructions: It is imperative that you as an employer provide your employees with thorough training and clear, written instructions.  Further, make sure that each employee reads and acknowledges your safety program.
  • Involve your employees in safety planning: Involving your employees in the safety process serves as a great motivator, providing them with a stake and ownership in workplace safety.
  • Focus your safety efforts on the most likely problems: Eliminate those safety violations and concerns that most frequently lead to injuries, while still planning for less common but major safety concerns.
  • Engineer a safe work area: A work area can include furniture, benches, conveyors, equipment, and vehicles.  The layout of the area in which employees are expected to conduct a particular job is critical to preventing injuries.
  • Maintain a clean work area: A clean environment is a safe environment.  Removing clutter and ensuring clean, dry floors will greatly diminish the chance of slip, trips, and falls.
  • Maintain all machinery in good working order: Have a routine maintenance system in place as maintaining machinery is essential to preventing serious injuries
  • Supervise each employee thoroughly: By observing your employees as they work, you will identify any unsafe practices in time to correct them.  You can also identify any employees who are performing tasks in an improved manner that could be adapted by all employees, as well as those who are taking possibly dangerous short cuts.
  • Encourage your employees to report any safety concerns to management: Employees often have vital insight into potential safety issues.  Creating an environment that encourages employee communication concerning safety will allow you to correct safety issues before injuries occur.
  • Remove and avoid any unnecessary hazards: Do routine inspections of the entire workplace to identify any unnecessary hazards and promptly remove them.
  • Revisit your safety guidelines regularly: At least once a year, inspect your workplace and review your safety program.  Update and make any necessary changes to address current issues.

Contact Kansas City Workplace Accident Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation

It is our hope that these safety tips and increased federal regulations over the workplace will decrease the incidence of workplace accidents.  If you are injured during the course and scope of employment, the Lenexa, Kansas Workplace Accident Lawyer at the law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A. can help.  Our law firm is committed to seeing injured workers recover for their medical bills, lost wages, oncoming disability, and more.  For over 27 years, we have helped injured workers through the complex workers’ compensation process, towards a full recovery.  If you have questions about your rights following an accident or need assistance with your claim, the law firm of Michael R. Lawless can help.  To schedule a free consultation to discuss your potential workplace accident case, contact Michael R. Lawless, PA by calling our office locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771.  You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.

 

Kansas Workers’ Compensation and Crush Injuries

Each year, over 120,000 workers will suffer from crush injuries which occur when the body is caught or trapped between two objects or entangled in machinery.  These hazards are sometimes referred to as “pinch points.”  The physical force exerted on the body when trapped in a pinch point can vary, resulting in injuries that range from scraping and bruising to mangled limbs, amputated body parts, and death.

Crush injuries are among the most serious injuries experienced by Kansas workers.  Employees injured in a pinch point can pursue compensation for their medical expenses, missed time from work, physical therapy, permanent disability, and more through Kansas’ workers’ compensation system.

Common Causes of Crush Injuries

There are a number of causes of crush injuries on the job site, including:

  • Being hit by a falling object, such as a piece of equipment or machinery
  • Being pinned down or stuck between two objects, such as a building and a piece of equipment or a motor vehicle
  • The collapse of a structure on top of the employee
  • Limbs stuck in machinery
  • Being run over by equipment or machinery
  • Equipment tipping over, trapping the employee
  • Defects in equipment or machinery

The potential for crush injuries exists in most workplaces, but they happen with regularity in the manufacturing and construction fields.

Injuries that Result from Being Crushed   

When an employee’s body is crushed between two objects, the muscle cells start to die almost instantly.  There are three mechanisms within the body that cause the cells to die.  The disruption of the cells experienced when a part of the body is crushed is referred to as lysis. The continued pressure exerted on the muscle cells causes them to become ischemic, during which period they generate lactic acid and begin to leak.  Vascular compromise refers to the lack of blood flow that often results from compression of vessels experienced during a crush injury.

Crush injury victims may sustain the following injuries:

  • Damage to muscles
  • Damage to skin tissue
  • Damage to nerves
  • Severing of limbs
  • Compartment syndrome
  • Amputation of limbs
  • Paralysis
  • Broken bones
  • Organ damage
  • Death

Crush injuries often lead to severe disability and have a high probability of complications, such as swelling, infection, blood clots, phantom pain, heart problems, and the need for further amputation.  The extent of the injury will depend on the unique circumstances, including the part of the body involved and the time spent being stuck between two objects.

A Kansas workers’ compensation attorney will help you to obtain coverage for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, permanent disability, and more.  Even if the accident was partially your fault, you can receive compensation for expenses stemming from your workplace accident.

Contact Kansas City Workers’ Compensation Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation

Crush injuries in the workplace are among the most severe and more difficult to obtain adequate workers’ compensation coverage due to the serious and sometimes long-term injuries that result.   If your workers’ compensation claim has been denied or if you are confused as to the workers’ compensation claim process, Michael R. Lawless, P.C. can help.  The Kansas Workers’ Compensation Attorney Michael R. Lawless of Michael R. Lawless, PA, devotes his practice to helping injured clients obtain the benefits they deserve.  To schedule a free consultation with Michael R. Lawless, contact our office today by calling locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771.  You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Compensation in Kansas: Part II

Injuries on the job can be devastating, leaving an employee unable to work, in pain, and traveling to and from doctor’s offices for sometimes extended periods of time.  Workers’ compensation is intended to provide injured employees with reliable coverage for their medical bills and lost wages stemming from an on the job injury.  However, the workers’ compensation system does not always make it easy for employees to obtain the benefits to which they are entitled.

In Part I of this two part series, we began our list of questions frequently asked by employees who have been injured on the job.  In this segment, we continue our list, delving further into some specifics concerning workers’ compensation in Kansas.

What types of injuries or illnesses are covered under workers’ compensation?

Virtually any type of work-related injury or illness will be covered by workers’ compensation.  Some commonly covered conditions include: back injuries, traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, wounds, bodily reactions to substances, burns, and repetitive stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome.

What is arising out and in the course of employment?

The only requirement for the injury or illness is that it must arise out of or in the course of employment.  “Rising out of” refers to some connection between the employment and the injury.  “In the course of” refers to injuries occurring while at work or during the course of work.  For instance, an employee who suffers from carpal tunnel due to typing at work has an injury that arose out of employment.  An employee who suffers an injury while punched in is in the course of their employment.

Do I need a workers’ compensation attorney to help me obtain the benefits to which I am entitled?

A workers’ compensation attorney can prove vital to navigating the intricate workers’ compensation system and fighting for your full coverage.  While not every injury will warrant the assistance of an attorney, those who have sustained a serious injury that will require time off work and significant medical expenses would be wise to consult with a workers’ compensation attorney from the start.

What if my claim for workers’ compensation is denied or not fully covered?

If your workers’ compensation claim has been denied or not fully covered, it does not mean you are out of options.  A workers’ compensation attorney can assist you in appealing the decision and obtaining your maximum coverage.

What if my injury was caused by a third party?

If your injury was not caused by another employee, but by a third party, you may be able to sue that third party outside of the workers’ compensation system.  Employees injured by a defective product or an at fault driver could seek recovery in separate action.  Your experienced workers’ compensation attorney can evaluate your case and determine all possible avenues for recovery.

Contact Kansas City Workers’ Compensation Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation

Workers’ compensation claims can be complex and stressful.  Those injured on the job may experience uncertainty as to whether they should file a workers’ compensation claim.  It is important that any injured worker fully understand their rights and obligations that are attached to filing a workers’ compensation claim before actually deciding to file a claim.  To better understand what to expect, and what you might receive after filing a workers’ compensation claim, you should consult with a Kansas Workers’ Compensation Lawyer right away.  Kansas workers’ compensation attorney Michael R. Lawless of Michael R. Lawless, PA, devotes his practice to helping injured clients get back on their feet.  To schedule a free consultation with Michael R. Lawless, contact our office today by calling locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771.  You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.

When Kansas Workers’ Compensation Benefits Are Denied

Workers’ compensation benefits can help injured or ill employees cover their medical expenses and also, a portion of their lost wages. However, there are exceptions that result in the denial of some workers’ compensation claims.  The purpose of workers’ compensation for Kansas workers is to promote a healthy workforce so that injured or ill employees are taken care of in a time of need.  Therefore, if a workplace injury or illness is caused by preventable and unnecessary conduct, a workers’ compensation claim can lawfully be denied.

Kansas Workers’ Compensation Law

Under Kansas law, workers’ compensation claims are denied if the injury or illness to the worker results from the following conduct:

  • The worker deliberately caused his or her own injury or illness;
  • The worker’s failure to use protective measures required by law in order to guard against an accident that causes an injury or illness;
  • The worker’s failure to use protective measures provided by the employer to guard accident an against that causes an injury or illness;
  • The worker’s reckless violation of the employer’s workplace safety rules and regulations; or
  • The worker’s voluntary participation in fighting or horseplay with a co-worker for any reason at all, whether work-related or not.

If you believe your workplace injury or illness may be considered one that was caused by any of the above conduct, you should speak with a Kansas Workers’ Compensation Attorney as soon as possible.  There are always exceptions to the rules, and an attorney can determine if you should be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.

Regardless of how your injury or illness occurred while on the job, it is extremely important to notify your employer of the injury or illness and file a workers’ compensation claim as soon as possible.  Take steps to prove your injury or illness and document why you believe the accident occurred.  For example, if a co-worker punched you, causing you to fall and injure yourself, your version of the facts will likely be different than the co-worker’s version of the facts.  If your employer and/or your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier believe your injury resulted from a fight you were a part of, you may be denied benefits.  A Kansas workers’ compensation attorney can help you fight to receive the benefits you deserve.

While some workers may not deserve workers’ compensation benefits when they intentionally caused their own injuries or illnesses, there are a substantial number of Kansas workers who are denied workers’ compensation benefits based on facts that do not tell the whole story.  As such, you should consider allowing a Kansas workers’ compensation attorney to stand by your side and advocate on your behalf.  With the proper representation and adequate documentation, you should be able to receive benefits to compensate you for the injury or illness you have suffered.

Contact Michael R. Lawless, PA Today to Schedule Your Free Consultation

If you have recently been injured or become ill while on the job, you should seek the advice of a Kansas workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible.  An attorney will thoroughly investigate your workplace injury or illness to determine if your claim may be at risk for denial.  With 27 years of experience representing the rights of injured Kansas workers, Kansas Workers’ Compensation Attorney Michael R. Lawless has the skill and dedication to help you receive the compensation you deserve for suffering a workplace injury or illness.  To schedule a free consultation to discuss your potential workers’ compensation claim, contact Michael R. Lawless, P.A. today by calling our office locally at (913) 681-5566, or calling our toll-free number at (800) 734-3771.  You may also contact us online and we will respond as soon as possible.