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Columbus Injured Worker Legal Blog

How does income affect SSI benefits?

The Social Security Administration provides supplemental security income benefits to those who are age 65 and older, blind or disabled and have little income or resources. Having income below state-determined income limits is one requirement for obtaining and retaining SSI. However, there are certain work incentive programs that allow recipients to continue receiving benefits while they are working if they meet certain SSA requirements.

Those who continue to work despite their disabilities may continue to receive SSI payments until their earnings exceed the state SSI income limit. This limit varies depending on whether the recipient is single, whether they pay for their own food and shelter and whether they live in a medical facility. In Ohio, those who are single and pay for their own food and shelter may receive up to $735 per month in SSI benefits.

Ohio BWC gives $732,000 in workplace safety grants

The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) has given 29 Ohio employers over $732,000 in safety grants through the Safety Intervention Grant program. These employers, from over 19 counties in Ohio, including Franklin County, must now purchase equipment designed to reduce workplace injuries.

The Safety Intervention Grant Program provides financial assistance to employers toward the purchase of equipment that will enhance workplace safety. Any Ohio-state fund or public employer may participate and is eligible for a three-to-one matching grant. The BWC will give three times the amount of employer contributions up to $40,000 per eligibility cycle.

Ohio company faces penalties for OSHA violations

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration's investigations into an Ohio company revealed multiple safety violations. Amsted Rail Company Inc., a manufacturer of cast steel freight components, has now been placed in OSHA's Severe Violator Program and faces a penalty of over $600,000.

OSHA found multiple violations during the two safety inspections including failure to implement engineering controls to lower silica exposure, failure to adequately equip machinery with safety precautions, failure to implement a respiratory protection program, failure to provide personal protective equipment and failure to prevent falls by evaluating permit-required confined spaces, guard floor openings and shafts.

Workers' compensation benefits available in Ohio

Workers' compensation is a system that compensates employees for workplace injuries. Contrary to other types of personal injury claims, workers' compensation does not provide compensation for pain and suffering. The two types of compensation available under workers' compensation in Ohio are medical benefits and wage benefits.

Workers in Ohio have the right to swift, quality medical treatment from a doctor of their choice. Managed care companies work together with the Bureau of Workers' Compensation in the oversight of treatment, therefore disputes over claim denials or physician choice may be difficult to resolve without the assistance of an experienced attorney. The experienced workers' compensation lawyers at the Philip J. Fulton Law Office can help to ensure that claimants receive compensation for their medical expenses and assist in navigating complicated workers' compensation disputes or denials.

Can I claim disability benefits if I have arthritis?

You may know that individuals who have medical conditions that prevent them from working may have a rightful claim to disability benefits. However, you may not know that this also applies for individuals who suffer from severe cases of certain chronic conditions. 

If you have arthritis, you may not be able to work due to the severity of your condition and your physical limitations. While this condition is unseen, its effects are very real, and you may be genuinely unable to hold gainful employment. If you find yourself in this situation, you may be able to qualify for disability benefits through Social Security.

Fighting back after a denied workers' compensation claim

Did you suffer an injury while at work or become ill due to toxic exposure on the job? You may know that injured Ohio workers have the right to seek benefits through an employers' workers' compensation insurance, but you may not know what to do if your claim comes back denied.

Unfortunately, many initial workers' compensation claims do not receive approval. If it happens to you, you may feel frustrated, but you still have certain options, and you may even be able to continue to fight for the financial support to which you have a rightful claim. A beneficial first step after a denied claim is to seek the help of an attorney experienced in the complexities of the workers' comp insurance system.

Common transportation and warehouse industry work accidents

Workers in the transportation and warehouse industries face many potential hazards, putting them at an increased risk for workplace accidents. According to the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation, approximately 3,500 employees in the transportation and warehouse industries suffer occupational injuries each year. The primary cause of these injuries is slip and fall accidents, which account for approximately 60 percent of all injuries resulting in eight or more days out of work.

The BWC recommends assessing facilities and grounds for potential hazards and repairing anything that could cause a worker to slip, trip or fall. It also suggests providing adequate lighting and fall protection like guardrails for employees who work from higher elevations. Simply getting in and out of a truck poses risk of injury. Workers should be trained on proper procedure including maintaining three points of contact and facing the cabin.

Proposed bill would reform Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation

The largest state-run workers' compensation insurance fund in the country could be reformed per a proposed state bill. An Ohio State Representative recently announced plans to introduce a bill that would change the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation in several ways. The proposed bill would increase workers' compensation benefits for families of workers killed on the job, change benefits for some disabled workers and rebrand the BWC with a new name.

The Ohio Representative hopes that the proposed changes will increase employer participation in safety programs, ensure that injured workers are provided health care by more providers, facilitate injured workers' return to work and increase benefits to families of workers killed on the job. He notes that most employers do not involve themselves until a worker has already been injured; he wants employers to participate before injuries happen and focus on reducing workplace injuries. The new bill would also address the issues behind health care providers' denials of BWC patients so that those suffering from workplace injuries would have more options for treatment.

Legal options for miners suffering an on-the-job injury

Coal mining is a dangerous occupation that often results in workplace accidents. The unsafe working environment may lead to serious injuries, both physical and mental. Generally, these accidents are covered by workers' compensation and therefore employers are immune to liability. However, in some states, like Ohio, employers may be held liable when the employee's injury resulted from the employers' intentional actions.

When an employee is involved in an accident on the job that results in injury, their employer's workers' compensation insurance will usually cover the cost of lost wages and medical expenses regardless of who was at fault in exchange for the employee's agreement not to sue the employer for their injuries. However, this limits the amount that an employee can receive in compensation to the predetermined levels of benefits in the workers' compensation system.

Memorial for Ohio firefighter who improved workers' comp law

An Ohio fire captain recently passed away from an aggressive form of brain cancer called glioblastoma multiforme. He worked for the Beachwood Fire Department and for the Willowick Fire Department for over twenty years. This fire captain leaves behind not only a wife and five children, but also a legacy. He was an advocate for firefighters suffering from occupational diseases and was successful in getting legislation passed earlier this year that provides easier access to compensation.

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Philip J. Fulton Law OfficeRepresenting Victims Of Workplace Injuries And Disability

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