Hiding Workplace Injuries Just Got Easier for Employers
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) suggests that some 2.9 million workers suffer a work injury each year. Unfortunately, these statistics may be inaccurate. In fact, studies indicate that many employees fail to report their work injuries, either because they did not think it was severe enough to report, or because they feared retaliation from their employer. There is also another reason that the statistics may be skewed, however, and it is highly concerning.Employers Hiding Injury Data
Most companies are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance policy is what pays for the medical treatment, disability pay, and death benefits to injured employees and their families. The cost to the company for this policy varies. Some have higher premiums because of where they are located. Others have higher rates because they have a higher-than-normal injury rate.
In the case of the latter, there were laws in place to ensure that these employers were tracked and monitored, not just by the insurance companies, but also regulatory agencies, such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the BLS. This law was recently repealed; many fear the implications will be catastrophic.Examining the Potential Impact
One of the biggest concerns that safety advocates have about the law’s repeal is that employers will be able to hide injuries that occur. While, on the one hand, such actions could be considered fraudulent behavior, designed to dupe the insurance companies, this is not the biggest concern. Instead, safety agencies are worried that companies with high incident rates will go unchecked; going unchecked means they do not have to make changes that would improve safety; lack of safety improvements means more workers could be injured.What You Should Know
Thanks to the recently repealed law, your employer may only keep injury data for up to six months. Previously, high-risk industries were required to maintain a backlog for up to five years. Without this data, the timely pursuit of compensation becomes crucial. If you or someone you love has been injured on the job, contact an experienced lawyer for an analysis of your case.
At Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP, we recognize that you and your family have suffered a significant loss. Our seasoned San Jose work injury lawyers can help. Dedicated to helping you get the compensation that you deserve, we will fight for your rights and a fair settlement. Schedule your free consultation by calling (408) 289-1417 today.Sources