July 14, 2014

OSHA Claims New Confined Space Rule Will Prevent Hundreds of Construction Injuries

According to the Industrial Safety Training Institute (ISTI): "65% of all confined space fatalities are due to hazardous atmosphere In 139 deaths, there were no detectors and no ventilation One-third of all deaths were supervisors 60% were rescuers 25% of spaces were toxic before entry" Unfortunately, many of these incidents occur because workers and employers do not know what constitutes a confined space and are unaware of the possible dangers that exist. In the event of an emergency, those that are faced with the dangers of entering a confined space are improperly trained and going in without the proper safeguards. […]
November 19, 2013

Disability Benefits for Mental Health Conditions:

Typically, industrial injury or occupational disease claims begin with a traumatic physical injury or the development of a physical condition over time from repetitive activity at work. As a result, many benefits payable under the Washington State Industrial Insurance Act are contingent upon the existence of “objective findings” substantiating disability based upon physical injuries or conditions. However, it is not uncommon for injured workers to develop mental health conditions that are causally related to the industrial injury or occupational disease. Unlike physical conditions, medical evidence of objective findings of mental health conditions and the extent of disability stemming from mental […]
July 30, 2013

The Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals: Its Purpose and Importance in Workers’ Compensation Appeals

In the State of Washington, the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals (BIIA) is an independent state agency charged with the responsibility of hearing and deciding appeals from decisions of the Department of Labor and Industries (Department). The BIIA hears three principle types of appeals: (1) industrial insurance or workers’ compensation appeals; (2) appeals from safety citations under the Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act; and (3) appeals involving crime victim compensation. The BIIA’s mission is to serve the public by resolving appeals in a consistent, impartial, timely, and efficient manner. According to the BIIA, it is committed to providing a […]
June 13, 2013

OCCUPATIONAL DISEASES: What are they and when should you file a claim?

In the State of Washington, claims may arise in one of two ways: (1) because of an industrial injury or (2) because of the development of an occupational disease. Industrial injuries are often easy to identify because they are the result of a sudden and tangible event that produces the injury. Occupational diseases, on the other hand, may be much more difficult to recognize because they often develop over time. An occupational disease is defined as “such disease or infection as arises naturally and proximately out of employment.” RCW 52.08.140. For a claim for occupational disease to be allowed, an […]
April 26, 2013

WAGES: How does the Department of Labor and Industries calculate my time-loss rate?

The Industrial Insurance Act defines monthly wages as the earnings the worker was receiving from all employment at the time of injury (or the date of manifestation of an occupational disease). Wages must also include the reasonable value of board, housing fuel, or other consideration of a like nature received from the employer as part of the contract of hire. If the injured worker has a second job at the time of injury or date of manifestation, the earnings from the additional employment must also be included when computing the worker’s gross monthly wage. This provision of the Industrial Insurance […]
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