Anybody can get hurt while working any kind of job. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires businesses to maintain specific safety standards for that very reason. And if you are, or ever have been, employed by any sizable company, you’ve experienced a few mind-numbing hours fulfilling that required safety training for your human resources department.
For most of us, working safely just means working with common sense. But sometimes mistakes are unavoidable. Museums, boutiques, bookstores and all number of calm and quiet work environments hold the potential for work accidents. Job site injuries aren’t confined to mining camps and lumber yards.
In Tennessee, employers in the construction and mining industries and employers with five or more full- or part-time employees are required to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance. Government employers and businesses employing farm laborers or domestic help are exempt from carrying coverage. So, for the most part here in Nashville, if you fall over a stack of shoe boxes in the aisle, or get caught in that bail of cardboard being sent off to recycling, you’re covered!
You may feel silly and even hold yourself responsible for getting hurt at work. You might also know that a claim against the company’s Workers’ Compensation insurance plan affects the bottom line; furthermore, some bosses will put you on a guilt trip about costing the company money. But no matter how you feel about it, don’t walk away from the compensation to which you’re entitled! Number 1, that’s why the law requires your employer to have insurance! And number two, accidents happen.
Workers’ Compensation benefits vary in different states. In the State of Tennessee, employees are eligible for:
- – Medical treatment for your injury.
- – A portion of your wages should you be temporarily unable to work.
- – Benefits for a permanent injury.
- – Benefits for dependent family members or estate should your work injury result in your death.
As soon as you’re hurt at work, tell the boss. Then get medical treatment. It’s also a good idea to make sure your case is reviewed by a knowledgeable Workers’ Compensation attorney. There may be more benefits available to you than what the boss described.
Learn more specifics about Nashville and Tennessee Workers’ Compensation laws by visiting The Department of Labor and Workforce Development.