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St. Paul Minnesota Workers' Compensation And Social Security Disability Law Blog

Social Security Disability after a sudden accident or illness

When a sudden injury or recent illness leaves you unable to work, will Social Security Disability (SSD) step in and provide you with an income?

Maybe. The agency's rules about what constitutes a disability often come as an unpleasant shock to many people -- especially those suffering from recent injuries or illnesses instead of long-term medical conditions.

Approach social media with caution after filing a claim

We live in a constantly connected world, and engagement is only growing. The Pew Research Center reports that over 70 percent of U.S. adults utilize social media platforms, including Facebook and YouTube. Many adults use these platforms to share their personal life, feelings and opinions. For this very reason, social media poses a threat to personal injury cases.

Hospital workers have good reason to be afraid at work

As the nation's drug crisis heats up, another segment of the population is facing a different sort of emergency. Nurses, doctors and other medical workers are being assaulted and injured by drug-seeking, out-of-control patients on a daily basis.

Many feel that there isn't enough attention given to the issue and that more could be done to protect medical workers in hospital settings. Drugged patients aren't the only dangerous patients workers face. Hospitals arguably receive patients under the worst of circumstances — victims (and perpetrators) of violence come through the emergency room all the time. Patients with serious mental health problems are also common. When medical workers aren't confronted with an angry or abusive patient, they may have to deal with angry or abusive family members.

Why are 'Waddell's signs' important to back injury victims?

Something called "Waddell's signs" may be the most important thing you've never heard of -- if you happen to be the victim of a low back injury and seeking workers' compensation benefits.

Back injuries tend to confound a lot of doctors. One patient may have X-rays that reveal major damage in the spine, including slipped and bulging discs, but very little pain and no limitations. Another patient may have almost nothing visible on his or her X-rays -- but still feel agonizing pain and suffer from tremendous limitations.

Social Security's backlog hits the two-year mark

Has your initial Social Security Disability claim been denied? If so, you may have your hopes pinned on an approval during the reconsideration phase.

Unfortunately, if you still don't gain an approval, that means going to a hearing in front of an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). At that point, you don't have a lot of options except to sit back and wait. That wait is now approaching the two-year mark for many claimants across the nation due to extensive backlogs.

Many jobs can cause a repetitive stress injury to the shoulder

Shoulder injuries caused by repetitive motion are common in many industries. Any job where you are repeating the same arm motion over and over again can cause a repetitive stress injury.

Some workers that can be most at risk include hairdressers, meat cutters, carpenters, and checkout clerks, to name just a few. Even baseball players are not immune - Minnesota Twins outfielder Eddie Rosario was recently scratched from the starting lineup for an upcoming game due to shoulder discomfort.

On workers' compensation? Beware the case manager's interventions

The big focus among workers' comp insurers today is reducing the expenses tied to "runaway" claims. However, they may now be targeting injured workers for "helpful" interventions by case managers whenever they decide a worker's attitude isn't conducive to healing.

In other words, if you're injured at work and you don't heal up quickly enough, you might get tagged for having an unhealthy attitude that insurers say is really driving your disability.

2 tips for a successful Social Security Disability claim

It isn't easy to get a disability claim approved through the Social Security system.

In fact, only around one-third of applications get approved the first time through the process. An unfair denial, unfortunately, means waiting around for months longer than necessary while the case works its way through the reconsideration process. If it gets denied again, a claim can take longer than a year just to get in front of a judge for a hearing!

Can undocumented immigrants file for workers' compensation?

Undocumented immigrants in the United States are having a rough time these days. The working conditions many of them face don't make it any easier.

Because of the limited number of jobs available to them, many undocumented immigrants take positions in hazardous occupations, like construction, roofing and factory work.

How can nursing home workers prevent back injuries?

If you work in the nursing home industry, you probably already know that back injuries are high on the list of "occupational risks" for your profession.

You may not realize exactly how high, though. Most people don't think that working in a nursing home is more dangerous than working at a construction site -- but it is. In fact, it's about twice as dangerous, according to statistics from the Bureau of Labor. Back injuries from trying to lift immobile patients are among the most common complaints.

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