May 2022

Study Shows Injury Claims by First-Year Employees Are Rising

Warehouse worker's boot gets snagged on debris laying on the floor.

Workplace injuries involving first-year workers have steadily increased in the past decade, according to a recent study by Selective Insurance, which analyzed workplace accident statistics nationwide, according to EHS Today.

Workers’ compensation benefits cover injury-related expenses due to on-the-job injuries and illnesses. However, it’s important to understand how the legal system works when it comes to work-related injuries or illnesses, especially if you get hurt during your first year on the job.

First-year work-related injury claims increase

Selective Insurance conducted the study, which analyzed work-related injuries nationwide between 2011 and 2021. During that 10-year period, the number of injury claims filed by first-year workers increased by 18 percent.

In particular, 38 percent of first-year employees filed a work-injury claim the first year on the job in 2021. In contrast, 32 percent of first-year employees filed a work injury claim in 2011, according to the study.

In 2011, employees filed their first work injury claim 6.4 years after they started work. In 2021, that figure had fallen to an average of 5.2 years.

What are common injury claims?

Certain work injury claims are more common than others. According to the Selective Insurance study, the most common workplace injury claims between 2010 and 2021 varied from one industry to another. The three most common work-related injuries by industry were:

Construction Work

  • Strain injuries – 22.4 percent of work-related injury claims
  • Slip and fall accidents – 19.7 percent
  • Cut, puncture or scrape injuries – 16.8 percent

Manufacturing and Wholesale Work

  • Strain injuries – 27.2 percent
  • Cut, puncture or scrape injuries – 18.6 percent
  • Struck by object accidents – 16.4 percent

Retail and Professional Services

  • Cut, puncture or scrape injuries – 23.5 percent
  • Slip and fall accidents – 21.1 percent
  • Strain injuries – 17.3 percent

What can employers do to keep workers safe?

There are steps employers can take to prevent work-related injuries, including:

  • Educate new workers and provide them with proper safety training.
  • Provide workers with appropriate safety equipment and train them on how to use it.
  • Regularly inspect workplaces to make sure they’re free of hazardous conditions.
  • Quickly fix and address hazardous work conditions.

There are other steps employers can and should take to make workplaces safer, depending on the specific nature of the work being done. If you get hurt at work, it’s critical that you understand your legal rights and options, including the right to seek workers’ compensation benefits.

Talk to a workers’ comp attorney today

You might think you don’t need a lawyer if you got hurt at work. The problem is work injury claims can turn into complicated legal cases for a wide range of reasons, and if you’re not careful, you could miss out on the compensation you’re entitled to.

The workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of Deborah G. Kohl can help you every step of the way. We thoroughly understand how the workers’ compensation system works in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. That’s because we have years of experience helping injured workers get the money they deserve to get their lives back on track.

Learn more about your legal options. Contact our law firm and schedule a free case evaluation with a workers’ compensation attorney you can trust to put your best interests first. We have three offices located in Rhode Island and Massachusetts and handle workers’ compensation claims in both states.

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