Chemicals are quite literally everywhere in our daily world, and we are exposed to chemical substances — some dangerous and toxic — on a daily basis. The plastic used in storage bins can leach chemicals. The household cleaners we use are full of things like bleach and ammonia. Even with the push towards being more eco-friendly and safe, there’s really no escaping the dangers of chemical exposure.
What happens, however, when you’re exposed to toxic chemicals in the workplace and you get seriously ill as a result? In such cases, you may be able to collect damages for your injuries. Learn about the dangers of chemical exposure in the workplace, and how a Nashville workers’ compensation attorney can get you compensation.
OSHA Protections for Workers
OSHA, or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, is the government agency tasked with protecting workers from dangerous situations on the job, including chemical exposure. They create regulations, oversight, education and training modules to help people learn to better stay safe at work.
They’re also important because most work injury claims are covered through workers’ compensation, not personal injury claims, and depending on the nature of the injury it may also be required to file a claim with OSHA.
Whenever you’re dealing with a work-related injury, and especially one related to chemical exposure, you may need to be aware of other governing laws in play. While most of these claims, for example, are handled through worker’s comp laws, if you work for the maritime industry you’ll need to file through the LHWCA or Jones Act instead. Alternatively, depending on the substance, if it’s considered inherently dangerous, you may be able to file a product liability claim.
Proving Exposure Injuries
Other complications arise when it comes to proving your injury. Chemical exposure claims might not be straightforward, as the symptoms you present could be very similar to a range of illnesses. It can be difficult to determine that chemicals are present in the workplace, and further, that you were exposed in such a way as to cause illness.
The first thing you should do if you suspect chemical exposure is to inform your employer. This will give them the opportunity to investigate and address the situation to protect you and others from further damage. You can also request copies of any material safety data information that can help you know the exposure source.
Nashville Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Because these cases can get so complicated, it’s essential to get the right help to pursue your case. Many workers’ comp cases get denied the first time out, and it can be difficult to fight these denials to get the coverage that you are entitled to receive. That’s why you need the help of a Nashville workers’ compensation attorney to pursue your case. An attorney will be able to advise you on how to proceed, how to gather evidence, how to challenge denials, and how to avoid critical pitfalls.
At Mitch Grissim & Associates, we’ve spent many years helping people fight for their deserved workers’ compensation, and we’re ready to help you. For more information or a consult about the details of your case, contact us today.