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Cincinnati Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Surgery and opioids restricted for worker back injury in Ohio

It is important for workers in Ohio to keep an eye on various regulations used by the state when it comes to workers' compensation. For example, when there is an ongoing concern about how certain treatments are affecting workers, then there is a chance that rules will be put in place to regulate those treatments. One that is bound to be of interest to workers who suffer a back injury is the guideline from the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation restricting surgery and painkillers until it is the final resort.

Workers who have a back injury from their work will be limited to rest, receiving physical therapy and treatment from a chiropractor before they can get more advanced procedures, such as spinal fusion surgery and receiving prescription painkillers. The goal behind this is to reduce the number of workers who are receiving too many opioid painkillers and are becoming addicted. This new rule was implemented on Jan. 1.

What does 'remain at work' mean under workers' compensation?

Workers' compensation in Ohio can address a variety of different situations from workers who are completely unable to work for the foreseeable future, if not permanently, and workers who have minor injuries that leave them unable to work for a short period of time. For workers who have injuries that meet certain criteria, there is an alternative known as "remain at work" that might be useful. Knowing the details of remain at work is important for those who are considering it.

Workers who suffered workplace injuries can stay on the job with the remain at work alternative. It is meant for workers who are injured and have medical-only claims, meaning they have missed seven days or fewer, and want to continue working but are having issues doing so and might need to leave work again. The Managed Care Organization should be contacted if there is a worker who requires specialized services to continue working or is having trouble with an injury after getting back to work.

What is extreme limitation with neurological issues for SSD?

For Ohio residents who have a neurological disorder, knowing the requirements to get Social Security disability can be confusing. However, certain terms are important when seeking SSD benefits. One is "extreme limitation." Knowing what is meant by extreme limitation in the context of federal regulations when applying for disability is an important step toward being approved. Those who have an extreme limitation will often be unable to perform most, if not all, jobs. This is a vital factor in receiving SSD benefits.

Extreme limitation refers to the following: being unable to stand from a seated position; being unable to maintain balance when standing and walking; and being unable to use the upper extremities to initiate, sustain and complete work-related activities. When motor function is assessed, it hinges on how severe the interference is with standing; the ability to balance while standing or walking; and using the upper extremities.

What if my SSD benefits are being reviewed by the SSA?

People in Ohio who have already been approved for Social Security disability benefits because of an injury, condition or illness should be fully aware that the benefits, in most cases, are not permanent. The Social Security Administration takes steps to ensure that those whose issues are of sufficient severity continue to receive benefits. It does this on a periodic basis by taking steps to determine if the qualifying disability remains in place. This is an important part of any SSD claim.

For people who have not had a significant improvement in their health, their benefits will continue. The SSA will accrue new information about the claimant's medical condition to come to a decision. Information will be requested from doctors, hospitals and other medical sources to make the determination. These entities will be asked how the person's medical condition hinders their activities, what the medical tests say, and if there are medical treatments that the person is receiving. In some cases, the person will need to have a special examination, which the SSA will pay for.

When an attorney may benefit your workers' comp claim

workers' compensation claim may help to provide an individual with stability after an accident. In fact, for some individuals who are out of work, it may be essential for survival.

In such instances where results are vital, an attorney can be quite helpful. Consider these situations when it may be beneficial to solicit legal assistance sooner rather than later.

Can I get SSD benefits and workers' comp simultaneously?

Workers in Ohio who are injured or become ill because of their work will have the right to seek workers' compensation benefits. Some will also have the right to get Social Security Disability benefits. However, a source of confusion regarding the two programs can leave some wondering whether they can get both and how one set of benefits might affect the other. Understanding how workers' compensation can affect SSD benefits is crucial.

If the person is receiving disability from a private source, like insurance or a private pension, it will not affect SSD benefits. But, if it is a public disability benefit like workers' compensation, it might force the SSD benefits to be reduced. A worker will receive workers' compensation because he or she became injured or ill due to the job. This can be paid by a variety of sources. When getting workers' compensation and SSD benefits, the total amount that the worker gets cannot go beyond 80 percent of the average earnings prior to suffering the disabling issue.

Proposed law will stop workers' compensation for undocumented

Workers' compensation is a system in Ohio that is designed to protect workers who might have suffered workplace injuries or become ill due to their work. This can sometimes get mixed in with politics and lead to confusion regarding who can and cannot get workers' compensation benefits. One specific issue that is currently at the forefront is whether an undocumented worker can get workers' compensation benefits. The state legislature is tackling this issue and it could have future ramifications for people who are injured or become ill while working as undocumented immigrants.

The Ohio House is set to pass a bill stopping undocumented workers from filing a claim for workers' compensation benefits. The issue with this bill, according to its detractors, is that businesses will receive side benefits from hiring undocumented workers, as they will not be subject to rising rates of workers' compensation insurance if a worker is injured or becomes ill on the job. Supporters say that undocumented workers should not get benefits that are meant for workers who are in the U.S. legally.

Incidents of occupational disease sparks BWC-firefighter deal

Occupational disease is a major issue that workers' compensation in Ohio is expected to provide for. Depending on the circumstances, this coverage can be the subject of dispute among the employer and the employees. In some cases, the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation will join with an employer to take preventative steps to try to keep the problematic diseases from manifesting. This will often come about after a number of workers have suffered illness, injury or a condition. As with any issue connected to workers' compensation, it is important to have legal advice for the entire process.

The fire marshal of Ohio and the BWC have decided that they will take steps to deal with the high rate of cancer in firefighters. The plan is to provide firefighters with equipment that provides protection against cancer-causing agents. Currently, a $500,000 fund has been created to train and prevent. Another $1 million will be added by the BWC.

How can employer safety violations affect workers' compensation?

When workers in Ohio suffer workplace injuries, it might not have been due to an unexpected incident or the negligence of a fellow worker. There is a chance that it might have come about because of the employer violating safety requirements that were in place by law, or via mandate from the Bureau of Workers' Compensation. When there is this type of failure - known as a violation of specific safety requirement - there are certain rules the BWC has in place to handle it for the injured worker and his or her family.

If the employer commits a "VSSR," the injured worker or the loved one who is left behind after a fatality has the right to file an application for a VSSR award. There must be evidence that the violation either did or might have occurred because the employer did not adhere to the specific safety requirements. The Industrial Commission has jurisdiction over the process in which the injured worker or the dependent applies for benefits and the determination is made.

Do telecommuters qualify for workers' compensation?

One common question that many workers in the Amelia area have is whether they qualify for workers’ compensation benefits as telecommuting employees. Although telecommuting can be beneficial for both employer and workers, it does create some concerns when issues arise that normally occur in the job site. 

At the workplace, the employer's workers' compensation insurance typically covers accidents and injuries. Accidents and injuries that occur at a home office may also qualify for workers’ compensation. Here is a brief overview of telecommuting workers’ compensation claims


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