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

How does an OSHA violation affect your rights after an injury?

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is in charge of enforcing safety regulations in the workplace. Most of the time, employers do their best to live up to their obligations, but there are times when an employer is negligent -- even willfully so.

If your employer's OSHA violation led to your serious workplace injury, how does that affect you? It may be time to consider a lawsuit outside of workers' compensation.

Health care worker injuries, addiction and overdoses

Could a back sprain or a dislocated shoulder from trying to handle a difficult patient turn into opioid addiction and, eventually, death?

It's quite possible. In this country, roughly one person succumbs to opioid addiction and dies every 12 minutes -- and many of those people started down that road due to on-the-job injuries to their musculoskeletal system. At least one study (compiled from data on overdose deaths in Utah) indicated that 57% of those victims had one or more prior injuries at work -- and most of those victims came from jobs that were physically demanding, like the health care industry.

Why are you being sent for a Social Security consultative exam?

If you've anxiously been waiting for a decision on your Social Security Disability (SSD) claim, it can be frustrating to get a letter telling you only that the state agency charged with making the decision now wants you to see another doctor for something called a "consultative exam."

Consider this a sign of progress. The fact that the Social Security Administration (SSA) wants a consultative exam means that your claim has at least reached someone's desk and is actively being worked.

Your chronic migraines may qualify you for disability benefits

Migraines are no joke. Anyone who’s ever had one understands the debilitating nature of the “unseen” pain that is often dismissed as “just a headache.” Migraines can severely lower your quality of life and stop you from carrying out day-to-day activities. Making it through the workday with the burden of a migraine is no easy feat.

The impact of migraines on absenteeism and lost productivity is staggering. The U.S. workforce loses more than $13 billion in productivity per year due to migraines, and more than 157 million workdays. If you are unable to work because of chronic migraines, you may consider applying for Social Security Disability Benefits (SSDI).

Is your back pain serious?

You might figure that a little back pain is normal, especially given your age and your lifestyle. You've probably even experienced a little minor back strain from time to time.

So, how do you tell whether your back pain is something that will probably heal on its own or that requires medical care?

Asking a doctor to support your Social Security Disability claim

A lot of people feel very uncomfortable about bringing up the subject of disability with their doctors. They may tell themselves something like, "Surely, if I'm really disabled, my doctor would tell me!"

Well, that's not actually likely.

How does pain affect your claim for Social Security Disability?

When people talk about why their condition is disabling, they often mention the pain they experience. Pain is, after all, very limiting. It can exhaust you, make it difficult to concentrate and make it impossible to sit, stand, walk, lift or otherwise function normally throughout your day.

But, since everyone experiences pain differently, how does pain figure into a claim for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits?

What happens when you return to work after an injury?

Getting an on the job injury was a stressful incident for multiple reasons. While you nursed your body back to health, you probably worried about paying bills and keeping up financially. Thankfully, workers’ compensation was able to help you out. There’s the assumption that with time to rest, you will be able to come back to work feeling good as new. However, that can be quite far from the truth. While a doctor or a quick internet search might be able to give you a general idea of how long you’ll be waiting, there’s no telling for sure.

What’s more, after suffering an injury, one of the worst things to do is put pressure on it. While returning to work might feel like a necessity, there’s the chance that it will hurt more than it helps. Luckily, there is something in place to help.

Hepatitis and medical workers: A different type of injury

When most people think of on-the-job-injuries, they think of bad falls, being hit with a piece of equipment, injuring their backs or something similar.

In the medical field, however, the type of injuries someone can experience can be much different. Acquiring a hepatitis infection, for example, is one of the risks that many medical workers face daily.

Could you be raising 'red flags' with workers' compensation?

Let's be clear about something from the start: No employer likes to hear that an employee is injured and needs workers' compensation. In addition, no insurance company likes to pay out even $1 more than necessary on a claim.

So, despite the fact that the majority of workers' comp claims are legitimate, that doesn't stop claims adjusters and investigators from "digging through dirt" to try to deny your injury claim.

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