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    Archive for the ‘Workers’ Compensation’ Category

    10 Qualities To Consider Before Hiring A Lancaster Workers’ Comp Lawyer

    We know you have choices when it comes to hiring an attorney to help you with your on-the-job injury. Following are ten qualities we believe you should look for in a Lancaster workers’ comp lawyer before deciding whether or not you will hire them. Just remember, at Vanasse Law, LLC, we are proud of our reputation and the work we do and we don’t mind when you compare us to the competition because we know we will stand up to the test.

    #1 Look At Their Experience

    When you are considering a Lancaster workers’ comp lawyer, one of the first things you need to look at is their level of experience. How many cases have they handled? You may be able to find the answer on your own, but it is not a bad idea to straight-out ask about it. It is also a good idea to ask if they have handled cases with injuries and circumstances similar to your own. 

    #2 Reputation: Ask Around Your Community

    Word of mouth is sometimes the best way to find out whether or not a certain Lancaster workers comp lawyer is worthy of your case. Simply ask around to friends and family that you trust. If they have a recommendation, find out if they have actually used that attorney. If not, find out if they know someone that has. It is always better to speak to the actual client of the attorney so you can ask specific questions about their experience.

    #3 How Successful They Have Been In The Past

    You will want to find out how successful a workers comp attorney has been in prior cases. If you ask a potential attorney about their success rate and they make it clear they do not want to discuss it, keep in mind it may be because they are not allowed to under their professional rules and regulations. Still, it does not hurt to ask and be clear that you are inquiring about their cases in general, not any one specific case.

    #4 Do They Practice Exclusively In Workers’ Comp

    This is an important quality to look for. Some attorneys just dabble in workers’ compensation while others devote their entire practice to it. Workers’ comp is a niche area of the law and you need counsel that stays on top of what is happening and knows the ins and outs of how it works. It is best to look for a firm that dedicates all its resources to workers’ comp as they are more likely to know the best way to proceed in your case.  

    #5 Inquire As To How They Communicate

    Some lawyers are bad communicators, while others have a system in place to address communication with clients. Ask how an attorney addresses client concerns. For example, you may want to inquire how long it takes to receive a response to a question you have. Also, is there an extra fee for questions asked outside of normal business hours? Will your concerns be addressed by the attorney or their staff? How often can you expect status updates? Asking these questions on the front end helps to ensure that you and your Lancaster workers comp lawyer are on the same page from the get-go.

    #6 Find Out If They Are Local

    Some firms are local to the area they practice in and their attorneys know the people, companies, and industries that make the area special. Other firms are satellite offices of larger firms and they rotate out-of-town attorneys to the local office. Sometimes these firms have one founding attorney that is the spokesperson, but it is rare that you ever actually see this person. 

    Having a Lancaster workers comp lawyer that actually knows your town is something that makes most clients feel more comfortable and understood.

    #7 Gauge Your Comfort Level

    When you meet with a potential attorney, gauge how they make you feel. Are you comfortable around them? It is important that you feel like you can talk to your lawyer and that they care about what you are going through. If you feel like you are a bother or that your case is unimportant to them, you should probably look elsewhere for representation.

    #8 Are They Comfortable In A Courtroom

    Many workers’ comp cases settle outside of the courtroom, but others do not. You need a lawyer that knows when they are being lowballed and is not afraid of going to battle in the courtroom when necessary. Ask an attorney you are considering about their courtroom prowess.

    #9 Are They A Good Negotiator & Do They Know About Settlements

    Many workers comp cases are settled without going to court as it is typically the most cost-effective solution. An attorney needs to be able to effectively argue your case to ensure you receive a maximum settlement amount, and they need to know how to structure your settlement so that your benefits are maximized. For example, if you are receiving, or plan to receive, any type of government benefits, that will need to be considered when your settlement plan is established.  

    #10 Find Out About Their Caseload

    Is the attorney you are considering able to give your case the attention it needs? Or is their plate so full it is likely your case will be brushed aside? These are questions you need answered when you are choosing a Lancaster workers comp lawyer. Ask any potential counsel about their caseload and address your concerns. This is also a good time to find out about their staff and other resources. Does the attorney handle each case exclusively, or do they have staff to assist? There is no wrong answer to this question. It is just a matter of personal preference, but one that should be addressed. 

    A Lancaster Workers’ Comp Lawyer From Vanasse Law, LLC By Your Side

    A Lancaster workers comp lawyer from our firm will ensure you receive maximum compensation for your work-related injury. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you. 

    10 Common Misconceptions About Workers’ Compensation

    Workers’ compensation is a highly specialized area of the law, and like most areas that have their own rules and method of compensation, there are a lot of misconceptions about how the workers’ compensation system operates. Following are 10 common misconceptions the average worker has about their benefits. 

    #1 Your Employer Decides If You Have a Valid Claim

    Many workers think that their employer decides whether or not they have a valid claim and are able to seek workers’ compensation benefits. This is simply not true. The employer has 21 days from the time the employee provides them with notification of their injury to either deny the claim or issue a notice of compensation. If the claim is denied, the worker can then look at their options for appealing the decision. 

    #2 You Will Only Receive Benefits If You Were Injured On-Site While Doing Your Job

    This misconception has two parts: that the injury must be received on site and it must be received while actually performing job-related duties. First of all, in Pennsylvania, a worker may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if the injury occurred while they were furthering the business or affairs of their employers. In other words, it is not required that the injury occur on-site. However, if the worker was on-site when the injury occurred, they do not have to have been actively engaged in their job when the injury occurred. 

    #3 Filing a Claim May Mean You Lose Your Job

    Unfortunately, many workers are discouraged from making a workers’ compensation claim because they fear their employer will fire them or otherwise retaliate against them for filing the claim for benefits. Under Pennsylvania law, employers are banned from firing or retaliating in any way against a worker that files a claim for workers’ compensation benefits. If they do, then the employee should seek immediate assistance from an attorney.

    #4 You Will Not Receive Benefits If the Accident Is Your Fault

    A worker in Pennsylvania may be able to receive workers’ compensation benefits for an injury that they caused. This is not to be construed to mean that they will recover benefits for injuries that they intentionally caused to themselves. In other words, if the worker accidentally hurt themselves, they may be entitled to compensation. If, however, they purposely hurt themselves, they will not be entitled to workers’ compensation. 

    #5 Filing for Workers’ Compensation Benefits Means You No Longer Have to Work

    Filing a claim for workers’ compensation does not necessarily mean that the worker is able to stop working altogether. It depends on the nature of the injury, the doctor’s orders, and whether or not the employer is able to accommodate the restrictions put in place by the physician. For example, if the doctor says the worker can work as long as they are able to sit rather than stand while working, and the employer is willing to provide a chair and allow the employee to sit for the duration of their shift, then the employee cannot just quit. Doing so can jeopardize the worker’s ability to receive any benefits through workers’ compensation. 

    #6 You Cannot Recover Workers’ Compensation Benefits If You Have a Previous Injury or Underlying Condition

    Some workers believe that if they have a previous injury or underlying condition they cannot recover workers’ compensation benefits for an injury. This is not the case. If a worker sustains a new injury that aggravates a pre-existing injury they should be able to recover workers’ compensation benefits. 

    #7 You Are Only Entitled to Workers’ Compensation Benefits If You Are a Full-Time Employee

    Employees in Pennsylvania are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits even if they are not employed full-time. As a matter of fact, anyone injured while working is eligible, including part-time and seasonal workers. A worker should not refrain from filing for workers’ compensation benefits because they are not considered to be a full-time employee.

    #8 There Is No Workers’ Compensation Coverage For Occupational Diseases

    An occupational disease is a condition or disorder that occurs as a result of a person’s work activities or environment. Workers that develop a disease that is related to their occupation are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. An example would be if a person that works with coal dust is diagnosed with silicosis, a long-term lung disease. This could be considered a work-related occupational disease. Another example is when a person has a job that requires them to consistently be around noise that reaches 85 decibels or higher. This can result in permanent hearing loss for which they may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. 

    #9 If Your Claim for Benefits Is Denied, You Cannot Appeal

    Far too many workers mistakenly believe that if their claim for workers’ compensation benefits is denied they have no recourse. There is an appeals process that they are able to go through to have that denial reconsidered. In many cases, claims that should have been approved initially are denied and it is only through the appeals process that the worker is awarded the benefits they are entitled to receive. Workers’ compensation insurance carriers actually count on workers simply accepting the denial and not pursuing an appeal.   

    #10 You Should File for Workers’ Compensation Benefits Without Help From an Attorney

    Having a workers’ compensation attorney helping you with the claims process is greatly beneficial. Your lawyer will know how the workers’ compensation system works in your state and the steps you need to take to obtain the benefits you deserve. They are also able to clear up any misconceptions you have about your benefits, rights, and responsibilities. Finally, a workers’ compensation attorney will alleviate the stress that comes from fighting for your benefits without the assistance of counsel.

    Speak With An Attorney at Vanesse Law, LLC

    An attorney at Valnesse Law, LLC, can help you understand your rights and what you can expect from the worker’s compensation process. Contact our firm today to schedule a no-obligation initial consultation.

    10 Reasons Why You Need A Workers’ Compensation Attorney

    When you have suffered an on-the-job injury, you may feel as if you are at the mercy of your employer as you attempt to recover the compensation you are due. However, you don’t have to be. By retaining a Lancaster work injury lawyer at Vanasse Law, LLC, to assist you with your workers’ compensation claim, you have someone advocating for you and ensuring your rights are protected. Following are 10 specific reasons why you should have a Lanacaster work injury lawyer by your side. 

    #1 The Process is Overwhelming

    You work hard at what you do; you know your job, and you are good at what you do. You are not, however, experienced in workers’ compensation law and the claims process. For someone new to this area of the law, it can be overwhelming. That’s why you need a Lancaster work injury lawyer from Valasse Law, LLC, to assist you with the process. We know how to deal with employers and the insurance company and we handle the process for you, from start to finish. 

    #2 You Have a Pre-Existing Condition

    Many workers’ mistakenly assume that a prior injury means they cannot recover for a new injury, or aggravation of a previous injury, when an accident occurs. The truth is, you may be able to recover for injuries sustained from a new accident, even if you have a pre-existing condition. Obtaining benefits may be a little more complicated, which is why having an attorney on your side is so beneficial. 

    #3 To Ensure All Requirements Are Met

    Everyone that files for workers’ compensation wants the process to be over as soon as possible so they can move forward with their lives. One way to make certain the procedures moves as swiftly as possible is to provide the correct information when the initial claim is made. A knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer will be sure that your claim contains everything it needs to be successful from the get-go. 

    #4 So You Don’t Leave Money On the Table

    As a novice to workers’ compensation, you likely don’t know what your injury is actually worth. A well-seasoned lawyer will know what you deserve for the injury you sustained, and will ensure that you recover the correct amount. At times like this, you cannot rely on the insurance company to look out for your best interest. While they may seem to be on your side, in reality they are looking for a way to deny, or reduce, the amount you are owed under your claim. 

    #5 A Lancaster Work Injury Lawyer Can Negotiate For You

    Under certain conditions, you may be entitled to a one-time payment for the injuries you sustained. If the bills are piling up, it may be in your best interest to go this route and accept a lump sum payment. To be sure you receive the maximum amount, and do not settle for less than you deserve, a Lancaster work injury lawyer should handle the negotiation process on your behalf. Your lawyer will also ensure the agreement, once reached, is worded correctly to protect your ongoing interests. 

    #6 To Notify You of Other Benefits Available

    As an injured worker, there may be other benefits besides workers’ compensation to which you are entitled. This includes Social Security, unemployment, disability, and government sponsored healthcare. Whether or not you are entitled to additional benefits is a matter your attorney can address with you. Without a lawyer working on your behalf, it is likely you would not be made aware of these benefits. 

    #7 Your Employer May Not Cooperate

    In an ideal world, your employer will agree that you have suffered an injury, report it, and follow through with helping you receive your compensation. Often, however, this is not the case, and the employer fails to report the injury or even denies that the injury occurred. Many employers do this because they feel their worker won’t appeal their decision. When this happens, having a lawyer involved is critical. 

    #8 You Are More Likely To Be Taken Seriously

    Employers and insurance carriers often have teams of attorneys at their disposal, looking out for their interests, including their bottom line. As unfair as it may be, they are much more likely to take you -and your claim- more seriously when you are represented by an attorney. They realize their normal money-saving tactics will not take them far, and that you have a claim they should take seriously. 

    #9 Third-Party Involvement

    When a third-party, such as a vendor your company uses, is involved in your injury, the claims process becomes more complicated and you may need to file a lawsuit against the vendor themselves. The correct steps you need to take to maximize your recovery will be explained to you by your attorney, and if a lawsuit needs to be filed against the third-party, they will help you with that process.

    Filing a personal injury lawsuit against a third-party may be more beneficial to you as you can recover non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering, which are not allowed in a workers’ compensation claim. 

    #10 Your Employer Retaliates

    Employers are not legally allowed to retaliate against employees that file workers’ compensation claims. Even so, many do, although they may try to disguise it as something else. If your employer takes retaliatory action against you, you may be entitled to certain damages. Proving the actions of the employer are due to your filing the workers’ compensation claim can be difficult, and the help of an attorney is often required.

    Speak With a Lancaster Work Injury Lawyer at Vanasse Law, LLC

    Don’t try to negotiate your workers’ compensation claim on your own. Instead, retain a Lancaster work injury lawyer at Vanasse Law, LLC, to handle the process for you. Our legal professionals have the experience and knowledge you are looking for in your attorney. We may be reached by calling 717-397-1010 or via our contact page.

    Our Lancaster Workman’s Compensation Lawyer Answers Your FAQs

    Workers’ compensation rules and regulations can be entirely too complex for the average injured worker, and your employer and their workers’ comp insurance company are of no help whatsoever since their interests directly conflict with an injured worker’s interests. 

    If you’ve been hurt at work, your very first call should be to a Lancaster workman’s compensation lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC. Most injured workers are not aware that any statements made to their employer or insurance company may jeopardize their chances of obtaining full financial compensation for their injuries.

    Below are answers to injured workers’ most common questions regarding workers’ compensation.

    What is Workers’ Comp For?

    Workers’ compensation is, in its most basic sense, a state program designed to compensate employees who are injured on the job. These injuries are commonly referred to as “work-related injuries.”

    What is a “Work-Related Injury?”

    According to the Pennsylvania Workers Comp Act (the “Act”), a work-related injury is any injury, medical condition, or disease that is caused by a person’s job. There are no examples given by the Act, but it is clear that the condition must be related to the worker’s employment. Additionally, a work-related injury includes occupational diseases and pre-existing conditions that are aggravated by one’s job.

    When Do I Have to Tell My Employer I Was Hurt on the Job?”

    Section 311 of the Act requires notice to be given within 21 days after a work-related injury is sustained. But for a variety of reasons, you should inform your employer immediately.

    Do I Have to Go to the “Company Doctor?”

    Under Section 306(f.1)(1)(i) of the Pennsylvania Workman’s Comp Act, an injured worker must be treated by a “company doctor” for 90 days from the first visit, provided that:

    • The employer provides a list of at least six health care providers, 
    • The employer provides written notification of the employee’s rights and duties to the employee, and
    • The employer obtains written acknowledgment from the employee of the notice given. 

    An injured worker can receive treatment from any doctor or health care provider upon the employer’s failure to take these steps.

    How Much Compensation Will I Receive?

    The wage loss benefits are based upon the injured worker’s “average weekly wage,” which is generally 2/3rds of the amount the worker had earned before getting hurt on the job (although there are some exceptions). 

    How Long Will My Benefits Last?

    There is no hard time limit for receiving benefits. Injured workers may receive benefits until they settle their case or are ready to return to work. Nonetheless, many employers will attempt to limit how long a worker can receive workers’ compensation benefits in any number of ways.

    Will My Medical Bills Get Paid?

    Generally speaking, yes. Healthcare providers, doctors, and hospitals are paid for their services based upon a set fee schedule. You are never required to pay fees, including co-pays, for any medical care related to your work injury. Rather, medical care providers must submit their bills to the employer’s workers’ comp insurance company for payment.

    Can I Sue My Employer?

    Generally not. Injured workers give up the right to sue their employers, even if the employer’s negligence caused the injury, in exchange for receiving workers’ compensation benefits. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, you may be able to sue third parties that may have been responsible for your injuries, such as in a case where you get hit by a vendor delivery van. You may also be able to sue your employer for intentional torts at work, such as being assaulted by your boss.

    Do I Need a Lawyer to Represent Me in My Workers’ Comp Claim?

    Yes. The employer and the employer’s workers’ comp insurance company will have you at a serious disadvantage. Remember that any insurance company’s primary goal is to make money. They make money by denying or delaying your claim, or, most commonly, talking you into an undervalued settlement with the lure of quick cash.

    Workers’ comp laws in Pennsylvania are very complicated and difficult to understand, but the insurance company lawyers know them by heart. Attorneys who focus their legal practice on workers’ comp, like a Lancaster workman’s compensation lawyer at Vanasse Law, understand the law every bit as well as the insurance company. 

    Our team is prepared to level the playing field on your behalf, and often, the fact that you have retained a workers’ comp law firm is enough to force insurance companies into a favorable settlement. If not, we’ll take them to trial. A little-known fact is that insurance companies hate to go to trial, and will settle favorably if put to the test.

    Let a Lancaster Workman’s Compensation Lawyer Answer All of Your Workers’ Comp Questions

    Vanasse Law LLC is a law firm that handles only workers’ comp claims in Pennsylvania. With us, you don’t have to worry about taking a back seat to the latest big payout personal injury client. If you have been injured at work or doing any work-related tasks, it’s very important that you call us first. 

    When the insurance company contacts you after reporting your injury, or even if your employer starts asking you questions related to the injury, you simply say: “Please speak to my attorney” and give them our phone number. We will represent you to your employer and the insurance company, and we will handle your claim for you so that you can realize your best possible outcome.

    Our Lancaster workman’s compensation lawyer understands the law surrounding workers’ comp claims in Pennsylvania, and our team will be by your side through what may be a long-term serious injury issue. We’ll work hard to get you all of the financial compensation to which you’re entitled. Contact us today for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    A Lancaster Work Injury Lawyer Discusses Compartment Syndrome and Workers’ Comp

    The Mayo Clinic defines chronic exertional compartment syndrome as “a…muscle and nerve condition that causes pain, swelling and sometimes disability in the affected muscles of the legs or arms.”

    Again according to the Mayo Clinic, the signs and symptoms may include:

    • Aching, burning or cramping pain in a compartment of the affected limb
    • Tightness in the affected limb
    • Numbness or tingling in the affected limb
    • Weakness of the affected limb
    • Foot drop, in severe cases, if legs are affected
    • Occasionally, swelling or bulging as a result of a muscle hernia

    Pain caused by chronic exertional compartment syndrome typically follows this pattern:

    • Begins consistently after a certain time, distance[,] or intensity of exertion after you start exercising the affected limb
    • Progressively worsens as you exercise
    • Becomes less intense or stops completely within 15 minutes of stopping the activity
    • Over time, recovery time after exercise may increase

    Taking a complete break from exercise or performing only low-impact activity might relieve your symptoms, but relief is usually only temporary. Once you take up running again, for instance, those familiar symptoms usually come back.

    Compartment syndrome is usually associated with athletes or crush injuries, and certainly may be a type of work-related injury, qualifying you for workers’ comp benefits. If you have developed compartment syndrome through work, let a Lancaster workplace injury lawyer help with your workers’ comp claim, so that your employer or their workers’ comp insurance company doesn’t talk you into an undervalued settlement.

    The Serious Nature of Compartment Syndrome

    If you’ve ever disregarded a simple sprained ankle or stubbed toe suffered at work, but then began to feel a fairly severe and uncomfortable pressure around the area hours later, this inflammation-type pain could easily turn into compartment syndrome. This complication can be deadly.

    Generally speaking, compartment syndrome is an injury complication that causes increased pressure and bleeding within muscle tissue groups, which are surrounded by strong connective tissue called fascia. When this fascia is injured, blood and fluids rush toward the muscle tissue group, causing pressure. Any dangerously high pressure in the muscle tissue may impede the flow of blood throughout the affected tissues, and if the pressure is not released, it continues to build up and cause severe pain and muscle deterioration.

    Compartment syndrome is a common complication with crush injuries. However, compartment syndrome isn’t confined to one area but may be caused by any number of work-related injuries. 

    Our Lancaster Workplace Injury Lawyer Can Help With Workers’ Comp Claims Related to Compartment Syndrome 

    Although compartment syndrome is relatively obscure, any number of work-related injuries may lead to it. After even a seemingly minor injury at work, you should ask your doctor specifically about it during your post-injury exam. The last thing you need is the discovery of compartment syndrome after your case has been settled.

    A Lancaster workplace injury lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC understands the dangers of compartment syndrome and can help you be sure your workers’ comp claim accounts for this dangerous condition. Contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    How to Prevent Deadly Scaffolding Accidents

    A large number of Pennsylvania residents work with scaffolding every day, most commonly in construction jobs or other building sites. If you are one of these workers, you know that scaffolding presents serious risks to workers. Many serious injuries and fatal accidents are caused by scaffold falls.

    If you have suffered an injury at work in Pennsylvania due to faulty scaffolding, let a Lancaster workplace injury lawyer help with your workers’ comp claim so that your employer or their workers’ comp insurance company doesn’t talk you into an undervalued settlement of your claim.

    OSHA Guidelines

    Due to the inherent dangers involved in scaffolding work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) (PDF) has developed strict guidelines for the setup and use of scaffolds on job sites. Employers must follow the guidelines set out by OSHA as part of the requirement to provide all employees a safe work environment. Some of the topics covered by the OSHA guidelines include:

    • Fall protection or fall arrest systems
    • Guardrail height
    • Crossbracing
    • Midrails
    • Footings
    • Guying ties and braces
    • Capacity
    • Training
    • Inspections
    • Erecting and Dismantling

    Safety Tips for Working with Scaffolding

    The OSHA guidelines are comprehensive and detailed, but, as is the case with many government agency documents, they are formal and complex. Most construction veterans focus on common-sense safety tips, such as:


    • Make sure a competent person; i.e., an experienced scaffolding veteran has thoroughly inspected the scaffold before anyone climbs it
    • If you’re not sure that a scaffold is safe, ask a supervisor 
    • Use a personal fall arrest system whenever required
    • Wear sturdy shoes with nonslip soles
    • Always wear a hard hat upon or around any scaffold
    • Be aware of any co-workers sharing the scaffold as well as other workers below
    • Move around the scaffolding slowly and carefully
    • Use common sense! If it doesn’t feel safe, it probably isn’t


    • Don’t overload a scaffold
    • Don’t leave debris, tools, and other materials lying around the scaffold where someone could accidentally knock them off the platform or trip over them. Keep tools where they’re supposed to be
    • Be careful driving anything heavy, such as a forklift or refuse truck, too close to a scaffold.
    • Avoid using a scaffold entirely during windy or stormy weather, or if the scaffold is covered with ice or snow
    • Don’t take chances! It’s not worth it!

    Let a Lancaster Workplace Injury Lawyer Help You Understand Scaffolding Safety 

    Scaffolds on the worksite are among the most dangerous tools at any construction site. Many construction workers simply won’t use them. If you’re a construction worker who has been injured by a scaffolding accident, a Lancaster workplace injury lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC can help you with your workers’ comp claim. After all, workers’ comp is all we do. Contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    Are Total Knee Replacements Used Too Often?

    According to the Center’s Orthopedic & Neurological Care & Research:

    • By 2030, total knee replacement surgeries are projected to grow 673% to 3.5 million procedures per year
    • About 60% of all knee replacement operations are performed on women
    • Approximately 85% of knee replacements will last for 20 years
    • Nearly half of American adults will develop knee osteoarthritis in at least one knee in their lifetime
    • 80% of osteoarthritis patients have some degree of movement limitation
    • More than 90% of people who have knee replacement surgery experience a dramatic reduction in knee pain

    If you have suffered from an injury at work in Pennsylvania that requires total knee replacement, a Lancaster job injury lawyer can help you with your workers’ comp claim so that you can recover all the financial losses related to such extensive and extended medical care. We understand the laws in Pennsylvania and have experience dealing with severe, long-lasting injuries of all types.

    About Total Knee Replacements

    Total knee replacements have become a regular culprit in Pennsylvania workers’ comp claims. They may occur when a worker has a preexisting condition, such as arthritis, which is then aggravated by a work injury, or when the work injury itself causes damage to a previously healthy knee.

    Part of the problem is unrealistic expectations. Candidates for the procedure are often told that total knee replacement is the “cure” for their chronic knee pain or that the procedure will “reduce knee pain by X%.” However, research has suggested that a significant number of total knee replacement recipients are unhappy with the results and that a substantial number of recipients weren’t even ideal candidates in the first place.

    Still, it cannot be discounted that most people do well with their total knee replacement. Nonetheless, as is the case with any type of surgery, the procedure does carry certain risks, which may include:

    • Injury to related nerves
    • Unexpected bleeding
    • Infection
    • Clots
    • Limited motion of the knee

    As discussed, all of this comes with the risk that the procedure simply won’t relieve your pain in any meaningful way.

    Minimally Invasive Total Knee Replacement

    There is a procedure called “minimally invasive total knee replacement,” during which a smaller incision is used and is often performed under general or spinal anesthesia. This procedure causes less damage and is easier to tolerate and recover from. It may not, however, provide adequate repair or relief from pain. A Lancaster Job Injury Lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC can help you discuss your options with your doctor and select the best procedure for your particular circumstances.

    Learn More About Knee Replacement Surgery From a Lancaster Job Injury Lawyer

    Whether you’re considering total knee replacement or minimally invasive total knee replacement, you need to look at all of your options and how each impacts your workers’ comp claim. A Lancaster Job Injury Lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC can help you with your claim; simply contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    Employer Responsibility for Job Availability Under Pennsylvania Workers’ Comp Law

    Many states have seen the gradual erosion of workers’ comp benefits in favor of employers and their workers’ comp insurance carriers. In Pennsylvania, one of the mechanisms available to employers or their insurance companies is to “modify;” in other words, reduce workers’ comp benefits through the Labor Market Survey (LMS), also known as the “Earning Power Assessment” (EPS). 

    If you have suffered from an injury at work in Pennsylvania, a Lancaster workers comp lawyer will help you recover the maximum benefits allowed by law. This is particularly important as laws change or benefits are reduced, in that understanding your rights under the law is critical in recovering all of the benefits you are entitled to.

    What is the LMS/EPS?

    An issue arises when injured workers have physical limitations that prevent a return to their previous occupation. One of the changes negatively affecting workers was the creation of the LMS or EPS. Before the change in Pennsylvania law, if an employer or their workers’ comp insurance company wanted to reduce a worker’s benefits, the insurance company was required to refer the injured worker to jobs that were open and available. 

    If the injured worker made good faith applications to these jobs and was not hired, these jobs were deemed unavailable, and the worker’s benefits would continue. Employers and their workers’ comp insurance companies determined that this process was not favorable enough for them, and subsequently lobbied for changes to the Pennsylvania workers’ comp law.

    So, in 1996, the Pennsylvania legislature passed Act 57, which allows benefits to be reduced as long as the employer or insurance company can show that suitable LMS/EPA employment is generally available to the injured worker in the worker’s usual area of employment.

    Has There Been Any Legal Reaction?

    Pennsylvania courts have litigated the LMS/EPA issue and decided that the employer or insurance company may reduce benefits and only has to address the LMS/EPA issue if an injured worker offers evidence that a suitable job is available with the employer, at which point the employer or insurance company has to show no such job exists. This ruling ignores the fact that it is far easier for an employer to show an absence of a job than it is for an injured worker to show a suitable job exists. This seemingly small change to workers’ comp law is reflective of the ways in which the law continues to slowly erode the rights of injured workers. 

    Let a Lancaster Workers’ Comp Lawyer Help Explain How Workers’ Comp Benefits May be Reduced 

    A reduction in workers’ comp benefits can have a substantial impact on the quality of life for workers who have been injured on the job. A Lancaster workers comp lawyer at Vanasse Law LLC can help you with your claim and be sure that you are receiving all of the benefits allowed by law. Contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    How Can I Help Prevent Scaffolding and Ladder Accidents at Work?

    Scaffolding, also known as staging, is a temporary metal structure used to provide a platform for a work crew to perform its work at heights that are too high to work on from the floor. It can be a supporting structure made of poles, frames, or platforms that are suspended from above. Because scaffolds are high up by their very nature, they are also inherently dangerous.

    According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 2.3 million construction workers, or 65% of the U.S. construction workforce, work on scaffolds. With numbers this high, scaffold and ladder-related accidents are, for the most part, inevitable. 

    In Pennsylvania, OSHA safety regulations regarding scaffolding apply to those who work in the construction industry, but there are also additional legal options for such workers. For example, construction workers may also be protected by Pennsylvania’s product liability laws. A defective product can cause serious injury, and unfortunately, if scaffolding is defective, the end results can be deadly.

    If you have suffered from an injury at work In Pennsylvania, a Lancaster workplace accident attorney at our law firm can help. Whether it is a workers’ comp claim or a legal claim, we understand the Pennsylvania workers’ comp laws and strategy behind the burden of proof and will use these standards to help you establish your claim.

    How Can We Avoid Scaffolding and Ladder Accidents?

    Scaffold and ladder workers can maximize their safety with a few simple steps, including:

    • Always use a spotter for balancing heaving loading
    • Always use protective gear, including life jackets, and check your ladders and scaffolds
    • Organize power tools, toolboxes, and various types of clutter to keep a clean, safe workspace 
    • Clean up spills immediately to avoid slip-and-fall accidents
    • Use designated access areas to climb scaffolding and ladders, and never stand on storage trunks, old ladders, or boxes
    • Know the load capacities of the ladders and scaffolding and do not exceed them
    • Report safety violations or concerns to a supervisor
    • Use single-rail ladders
    • So not exceed the maximum intended load beyond any manufacturer’s rated capacity,
    • Secure ladder feet are on slippery surfaces
    • Use ladders with worn steps
    • Use ladders without nonconductive side rails, which increase the chances of exposure to electrical equipment

    Learn More About Workers’ Comp Claims From a Lancaster Workplace Accident Attorney

    Scaffolding and ladders have been extremely dangerous in the workplace for far too long and can be even more dangerous when they’re used together in unsafe conditions. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure you know how to use all equipment properly and in a safe manner. However, it is always best to lookout for our own protection and safety needs. That said, you are encouraged to use your own common sense based on the specific situation at your workplace and always follow any instructions or guidance provided to the letter. It’s a good idea for you to practice a bit with an experienced scaffold or ladder worker before you go up on your own.

    If you have been injured at work because of a scaffolding or ladder accident, let a Lancaster workplace accident attorney at Vanasse Law LLC help you with your claim. You can contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.

    Trench Collapses, Excavation Accidents and How to Prevent Them

    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHAs) regulations regarding trenching and excavations have made getting rid of potential and actual trench and excavation hazards on construction sites a top priority. Trench collapses and subsequent cave-ins pose a great risk to trench workers’ lives. That said, it is important for workers to know and understand their rights under the law.

    Some typical ways to prevent cave-ins include:

    • Sloping or benching trench walls
    • Shoring trench walls with supports
    • Shielding trench walls with trench boxes

    Employers should also provide safe ways to enter and exit. Additionally, all workers should be on constant lookout for hazardous materials or leaks. And if there’s ever any question or concern, NEVER enter a trench unless and until it has been properly inspected.

    There are other hazards related to trenching and excavations that workers need to know about before beginning any construction project. For instance, the atmosphere itself may be a health hazard for workers. OSHA requires testing for all excavations that are more than four feet deep, as well as in situations where oxygen levels may be low or other hazardous atmospheric conditions may exist. If this safety step is skipped, workers could be exposed to toxic chemicals or even worse — they could suffocate.

    Further, heavy machines, trucks, backhoes, etc. are typically used on excavation and trenching sites. Employers have an obligation to ensure all workers on the project know how to properly use such equipment, as improper use could result in serious and severe injuries.

    If you have been injured at work in Pennsylvania, a Lancaster workplace accident attorney can help you with your workers’ comp claims and review the circumstances surrounding the trench collapse and/or excavation accident. as well as advise on other potential legal claims you may have. We understand the laws and strategies needed for such cases and will use that to help you establish your claim.

    Is There a Way to Prevent Trench and Excavation Accidents?

    Construction site managers and workers can maximize their safety by ensuring the following has occurred:

    • Ensure proper protection is in place. To prevent workers from being injured in trenching and excavation incidents, it is imperative to have appropriate protective systems in place. As noted above, when such systems do not exist, workers are at a greater risk for injuries such as being crushed, toxic exposure and suffocation.
    • Make sure the site is prepared appropriately. Excavations areas should be inspected prior to any work being done, as well as ongoing during the project. Someone with adequate competence and training in soil analysis should be used when preparing the worksite.
    • Put equipment and work materials in their proper place. Excavation materials and work-related equipment can cause severe injuries to workers if they are put too close to the trench. That said, employers should be sure that all work materials and equipment are placed at least two feet away.
    • All access and exit areas should be made as safe as possible. Site workers typically use ramps and other equipment to access and exit trenches. When such equipment is not placed in an appropriate area or is left unmaintained, workers may fall and be subjected to all types of serious injuries.

    Learn More About Workers’ Comp Claims From a Lancaster Workplace Accident Attorney

    If you have been injured at work because of a trench or excavation accident, let a Lancaster workplace accident attorney at Vanasse Law LLC help you with your claim. You can contact us for a same-day response and a free consultation.