Our hands are among our most valuable body parts, and are the most important tools for workers. Whether it’s sewing a garment, performing delicate electrical work, or cutting through industrial building materials, hands provide the range of movement and dexterity needed to complete all types of tasks. Unfortunately, they are also often among the most vulnerable body parts when it comes to suffering injuries.
According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 1 million workers each year in the U.S. require emergency medical care for serious hand injuries suffered on the job. These injuries can range from serious cuts and lacerations to broken bones and burn injuries. Not only do they have the potential for causing substantial pain and suffering, they also create risks for long-term and debilitating injuries, amputation, and substantial physical and financial setbacks for workers who miss time from work, or become unable to perform the same type of work they once did.
While every industry and job is different, the National Safety Council notes that any worker can face risks of hand injuries, particularly when the following is involved:
- New employees and limited experience
- Poor safety training policies or training for specialized equipment
- Large machinery, power tools, and industrial equipment
- Dangerous substances, including flammable materials, caustic substances, and more
- Long hours, overnight shifts, and schedules that can compromise safety
- Distractions in the workplace
- Lack of personal protective equipment
- Repetitive stress injuries involving repeated hand movements
Whatever the underlying issues may be, workers can suffer a range of injuries, including lacerations, crushes, factures and dislocation, punctures caused by sharp objects, and severe burn injuries. In many cases, safety organizations state, these injuries are preventable, especially with proper training, the use of protective equipment, oversight, and solid workplace safety policies.
Your Rights After a Work Injury
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance most employers in Illinois carry. When workers suffer injuries on the job – including hand injuries – workers’ compensation can provide the benefits they need to obtain medical treatment and make ends meet while they are out of work.
As a form of no-fault insurance, workers’ comp is available to workers regardless of who caused their accident and injury (and even if it was their own fault). However, benefits are never guaranteed, especially as insurance companies aim to pay out as little as they can. For this reason, it becomes crucial that injured workers protect their rights to needed benefits by working with experienced attorneys.
At Leonard Law Group, our Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers have helped thousands of injured workers and families navigate the workers’ comp application and appeals process after suffering harm on the job – including all types of injuries involving hands. Because we also handle Personal Injury and Social Security Disability cases, our legal team is also able to help clients explore their options for pursuing compensation through other means. For example, injured workers may have the right to seek financial recoveries through Personal Injury lawsuits, especially if their injured were caused by the negligence of a third party.
If you have questions about your rights following a job-related hand injury, please do not hesitate to reach out to our proven attorneys at Leonard Law Group. Our legal team is standing by to review your case, explain your rights, and discuss the steps we can take to help. Contact us for a free case evaluation.