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Pittsburgh Workers' Compensation Law Blog

New rules to protect coal miners

Coal mining is notoriously dangerous. The ever-present dangers of mine collapse, gas leaks and explosions are pervasive throughout the industry. This danger persists despite improvements in safety and technology. These events, while shocking and tragic, do not capture the true risk of coal mining, which includes diseases like the black lung. Safety and technology took a big step forward this year as the Mine Safety and Health Administration began implementing new rules to combat this disease.

Hiring a Workers' Compensation Lawyer

Getting Workers' Compensation payments for an injured worker is supposed to be easy. In theory you can apply without a lawyer (*lawyer and attorney are the same term for someone who has gone to law school, passed the bar exam and is practicing law) and succeed in your claim. But in reality workers' compensation is like any government program, complicated, red tape, rules, multiple forms, and not very clear.

Pittsburgh sees decrease in number of workplace fatalities

According to a report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, workplace fatalities in the Pittsburgh area dropped from 29 in 2013 to 18 in 2014. This is the lowest number since 2003, the year that the Bureau of Labor began collecting data for the area. This report represents a significant improvement in Pittsburgh workplace safety. The numbers are also in contrast to a nationwide two-percent increase in workplace deaths from 4,585 in 2013 to 4,679 in 2014.

 

Injuries and accidents more prevalent in construction

Injuries at work can happen anywhere. Maybe you slip down a flight of stairs on your way to the office or trip over a cord on your way to the bathroom; life is full of accidents. Fortunately, for most workers, workplace injuries are not that serious. Unfortunately, this is not true for construction workers. According to the U.S. Department of Labor in a recent year, over 800 construction workers died on the job. It further estimates that four out of every 100-construction workers are injured in some way every year.

Steelworkers to vote on a new union contract

Steelwork, despite all the advances in safety and technology, remains a dangerous occupation. Steelwork is a unionized endeavor, which means that, if you are a steelworker, most of your benefits come from your union contract and not from government guarantees. Any renegotiated contract is extremely important for new and old steelworkers. The negotiating committee, this past week, decided to allow a union wide up or down vote on the contract.

What happens if you receive third party payments for your injury?

Equipment fails, people don't pay attention or materials are sub-par. The heavy machining work is dangerous and stressful on the machines that help you do your job. That is why these machines have to be tough, reliable and last a long time. However, every now and then, the forklift you were driving or the jackhammer you were operating breaks and you are injured. Can you file for workers' compensation and pursue a lawsuit against the third-party responsible for your injuries? The short answer is yes, and this article will review the legal implications of that scenario.

Protection from OSHA

Many employees in Pennsylvania know how much of a problem it can be if you are injured at work. Not only is there the matter of reporting your injury and the hazard that caused it, but you then have to contend with the injury itself and the time it takes to recover. This can also mean hefty medical bills, a loss of wages and the possibility of a long-term disability. 

Demoted after a workers' compensation claim?

You've suffered a work injury. You were hurt on the job. You have done everything that is expected of you from your employer and the workers' compensation insurance company and the nurse that calls or shows up to your appointments. You are off of work because you were hurt on the job and are collecting workers compensation checks. Work comp is paying for your medical bills for your work injury. None of the doctors you are treating with have released you to return to work. But then they do. With restrictions. Or you are sent to an IME and their doctor says you can go back to modified duty. Generally speaking if you are released to return to work with restrictions and you return to work, either with your employer or another employer you may be entitled to ongoing partial compensation checks ( a reduced amount of work comp checks). but you should always consult with an attorney.

Toxic exposure in the workplace

Many workers throughout the United States are exposed to hazardous chemicals and toxins at work every day. If you are one of these workers, it is important to understand what you can do to minimize your risks. And understand, you always have a right to work in a healthy and safe environment.

Framework of Pennsylvania's industry regulators

Pennsylvania is a longtime industrialized state. In reaction to this heritage, Pennsylvania has a multitude of government entities that regulate many aspects of industrial, construction and other dangerous industries. All of these agencies fall under the umbrella of the Department of Labor & Industry. So, if you find yourself injured in a construction accident, then the first place you should look is there.

Pittsburgh Office
4 West Manilla Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 412-922-0800
Fax: 412-922-0801
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Beaver County Office
2002 McMinn St.
Aliquippa, PA 15001

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-775-7372
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North Hills
6400 Brooktree Ct.
Wexford, PA 15090

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-933-0133
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Butler County
2200 Garden Drive
Suite 200-E
Seven Fields, PA 16046

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-283-7063
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Monroeville
400 Penn Center Blvd.
Suite 306
Monroeville, PA 15232

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 412-261-1129
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Westmoreland County
101 N. Main St.
Greensburg, PA 15601

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-836-7454
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Washington County
2400 Ansys Dr.
Canonsburg, PA 15317

Phone: 412-353-3572
Phone: 724-743-0463
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