Wolf, Baldwin & Associates, P.C.

November 2018 Archives

Insurers' rewards for tracking health goals comes with strings

It is much easier for others to track what we do and say in the digital age. Whether it is a GPS route to Bucks County or a parent monitoring her child's social media accounts, technology records it. Insurance carriers and employers are getting into the act by offering up to a $2,000 discount in healthcare premiums to employees who wear fitness tracking devices like Fitbit to document achieving certain health goals by measuring heart rate, sleep habits and blood pressure. Common goals include 10,000 steps a day.

All accidents should be reported to your employer

Workers who suffer injuries while they are working should be able to turn to workers' compensation for benefits. This is a special insurance that employers are required by law to purchase to protect themselves from having to pay out-of-pocket when a worker is hurt at work. The benefit to workers is that the insurance will cover their medical bills related to the incident. The workers' comp insurance will also provide income benefits for missed wages if the wage loss is related to the work injury.

Seasonal workers have a right to safe work conditions

Many workers take on a second job or work one temporarily during the holiday season here in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Despite the temporary nature of holiday work, employers are still held to certain responsibilities for worker safety. According to OSHA, employers and staffing agencies need to outline their respective responsibilities to comply with all applicable OSHA standards in the employment contract. This ensures that the employer complies with all applicable guidelines, and it avoids later confusion about employer obligations.

State introduces new opioid prescribing guidelines

The opioid epidemic is an economic and health crisis here in Pennsylvania. Now the Wolf Administration has become involved by introducing new guidelines for prescribing the drugs to injured workers on workers' compensation. The idea is to prevent workers with chronic pain or acute pain due to injury from becoming addicted to powerful drugs such as Vicodin or OxyContin.

Workers' comp versus personal injury

There are several key differences between personal injury suits and workers' compensation claims. The main distinction is that a party must be at fault if there is to be personal injury claim, such as a driver who causes a vehicle accident or a faulty product. A workers' compensation claim, on the other hand, is not fault based but it must happen in the course of doing work. Since there does  not have to be anyone at fault, the injured person does not have to prove that an employer or co-worker was negligent to receive benefits.

The Top 10 Safety Violations of 2018

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has just announced its list of the most frequent safety violations found in the workplace. While the list is preliminary, the numbers at this point will likely reflect the final list. The news was announced with some fanfare by Deputy Director of OSHA's Directorate of Enforcement Programs on the floor of the 2018 NSC Congress & Expo, which is the largest annual gathering of safety professionals in the world.

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