New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Attorney Says Annual Workplace Safety Survey Indicates Possible Drop in Filing of Claims

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Steve Cohen of New Jersey’s Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., says workers need to understand their right to compensation if they are injured on the job.

Workers’ compensation, workplace injury, work accident, work injury, occupational illness, attorney, lawyer, lawsuit, claim, Teaneck, New Jersey, NJ

New Jersey workers' compensation lawyer Steve Cohen

[I]f overall workers’ compensation costs are going down at the same time that medical costs are going up, it may mean that workers’ compensation insurers are seeing lower costs in temporary or permanent disability benefits.

New Jersey workers’ compensation attorney Steve Cohen said today that an annual survey showing a drop in direct workers’ compensation costs may indicate that comp claims are on the decline.

The recently issued Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index tallies the top causes of serious non-fatal workplace injuries. The Index is based on information that includes Liberty Mutual work¬ers’ comp claims. The data is from 2009.

According to the Index, the ten most disabling workplace injuries and illnesses in 2009 led to $50.1 billion in direct workers’ compensation costs. When adjusted for inflation, that figure represented a 6.5 percent decrease in costs from 2008, the Index said.

The decrease occurred despite the fact that costs of medical treatment for worker injuries has been growing rapidly across the country, including in New Jersey, based on researched conducted by the Workers’ Compensation Research Institute.

“If you are injured on the job in New Jersey, for instance, you may be eligible to receive medical benefits and two types of other benefits that can cover a percentage of your current lost wages and future loss of earnings due to the injury – temporary total disability or permanent disability benefits,” said Cohen, the chairman of the workers’ compensation section of the New Jersey workers’ compensation and personal injury firm of Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C.

“So, if overall workers’ compensation costs are going down at the same time that medical costs are going up, it may mean that workers’ compensation insurers are seeing lower costs in temporary or permanent disability benefits,” he continued. “And that could mean that fewer workers are filing for benefits.”

The Index’s top 10 most frequent causes of disabling injury were:

1.    Overexertion (injuries from excessive lifting, pushing, pulling, holding, carrying or throwing);

2.    Fall on same level;

3.    Fall to lower level;

4.    Bodily reaction (injuries from bending, climbing, reaching, standing, sitting, slipping or tripping without falling);

5.    Struck by object (such as a tool falling on a worker from above);

6.    Highway incident;

7.    Caught in/compressed by;

8.    Struck against object (such as a worker walking into a door);

9.    Repetitive motion (injuries due to repeated stress or strain); and

10.    Assault/violent act.

“I hope New Jersey workers understand that, if they are injured on the job, they have a right to compensation, and if an accident results in death, the workers’ survivors should be entitled to death benefits,” Cohen said.

Cohen said workers’ compensation benefits are awarded according to complex and intricate laws in the state of New Jersey. Additionally, he said, employers often seek to have benefits denied or decreased.

“It can be extremely difficult for an injured or disabled worker to fight for the compensation they need and are entitled to receive,” Cohen said. “That is why it’s important for workers to have a dedicated New Jersey workers’ compensation lawyer on their side to file and pursue their claim through the New Jersey workers’ compensation system.”

About Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C.

The New Jersey workers’ compensation lawyers and dedicated staff of Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., provide compassionate and skilled legal help to injured and ill workers and those harmed by the negligence of others.

Since 1981, the firm has secured workers’ compensation benefits and more than $350 million in verdicts and settlements for clients throughout North Jersey and New York, including the communities of Newark, Jersey City, Paterson, Elizabeth, Edison, Toms River, Trenton, Clifton, Camden, Brick Township, Woodbridge Township, Bergen Co., Middlesex Co., Somerset Co., Warren Co., Sussex Co., Monmouth Co., Mercer Co., Ocean Co., Hudson Co., Passaic Co., Essex Co., Union Co., Morris Co., Teaneck, Fort Lee, Paramus, Hackensack, Hoboken, Secaucus, Englewood, Mahwah, Bergenfield, Union City, North Bergen, Ridgewood, Bayonne, Ridgefield, Belleville, Alpine, New Milford and Atlantic City.

In addition to workers’ compensation and personal injury, the firm’s practice areas include auto accidents, drunk-driving accidents, motor vehicle accidents, medical malpractice, legal malpractice, premises liability, product liability, slip-and-fall injuries and truck accidents.

For more information about Davis, Saperstein & Salomon, P.C., call (800) LAW-2000 or use the firm’s online contact form.

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