The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act (the “Act”) provides protection for employees injured or killed during the course of their employment. The Act, sometimes referred to as workers comp insurance, details the rights of the employee and responsibilities of the employer to handle any injury from a job-related accident, occupational disease or death.
The North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC) is responsible for administering the Workers’ Compensation Act. Workers who are injured on the job should immediately advise their employer, who will arrange medical care under their workers’ comp insurance policy. The injury should also be confirmed in writing using the appropriate NCIC form. The Act defines compensation to be paid to the employee if an injury requires time off from work or results in permanent disability. The majority of employers in the state are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance; employers who fail to provide coverage risk fines and potential lawsuits.
Accidents on the Job
Sprains, strains and tears are generally the most common injuries to workers. The largest number of injuries is caused by contact with objects or equipment, followed closely by overexertion. In the most recent statistics published by the U.S. Department of Labor, there were over 3 million non-fatal workplace injuries reported in 2012. Of these, just over half were serious enough to result in days away from work, job transfer, or work restrictions.
Many times we find that the injured worker was denied payment of correct wages while out of work, put back to work before ready, or otherwise treated unfairly. An experienced workers compensation attorney can deal with the complexity of the Act and can work within the system to ensure that all rights and benefits are paid to the injured worker. Brinkley Walser Stoner is a strong advocate for the injured worker in North Carolina. There is no charge for an initial consultation.
A worker can be injured not only by a specific event but by certain conditions that arise as a result of the worker’s environment over a period of time. This includes poisoning, skin disease, respiratory illness, exposure to certain chemical and repetitive motions that cause a permanent injury. Exposure to chemicals or toxins may result in certain cancers. A job that requires repetitive motions may cause an injury such as carpal tunnel syndrome. A work environment that is excessively loud may result in hearing loss. These injuries and illnesses are generally classified as occupational diseases.
Occupational diseases may result in a decline in the injured worker’s quality of life, chronic disease or death. Failing to get adequate advice if you suspect this type of claim can cause serious harm. Brinkley Walser Stoner has a strong history of asserting claims on behalf of workers who are injured due to their work environment. There is no charge for the initial consultation.
Wrongful Death Cases
It is tragic to hear that someone has been killed during the course of their employment. Not only is there the emotional burden for the family but often a financial one as well. The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act provides compensation to the loved ones of a deceased worker. Brinkley Walser Stoner deals with the death of an injured worker with compassion for those left behind and as an advocate to help the surviving spouse and children. There is no charge for a consultation concerning any potential claims you believe you have due to the work-related death of someone you loved.
The area of workers’ compensation can be complex. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured on the job, protect your rights by consulting with an attorney today. Brinkley Walser Stoner is a strong advocate for the injured worker in North Carolina. Contact us today for a free initial consultation.