When workplace hand injuries make it impossible to use one or more hands, it limits your ability to work and continue earning. Workers’ comp insurance should pay for your medical costs and loss of earnings.
Commonly occurring hand injuries can be serious
Hand injuries impact many aspects of life and can trigger costly claims. Most hand injuries occur from broken bones, soft tissue injuries, cuts and lacerations. The injuries often occur suddenly but also can build up over time due to repetitive motions and related injuries. Carpel tunnel syndrome among cashiers and other workers who commonly use their hands to grasp and lift is especially pervasive. Treatments can range from simple time off work to lifelong issues that reduce your ability to work and use your hands.
Some trades are riskier
Some jobs require greater use of hands with tools that could cause serious injuries or in conditions that can lead to accidents. Farming, installation and maintenance, construction and transportation are among those industries that run much higher incidences of injuries than other occupations. That means more hand injuries occur per work hour and pose even greater risks of workplace injuries.
Using heavy machinery often to do repetitive tasks makes such jobs risky in nature. Human error and other factors are bound to lead to occasional mishaps that could injure a worker’s hands or cause other workplace injuries. Older workers represent a slightly larger risk than younger workers with about 16% of all workplace hand injuries afflicting those age 55 and older. Older workers also tend to take longer to heal than younger counterparts, which compounds the medical and recovery costs.
Hand injuries can be very costly
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that workplace hand injuries cost an average $6,000 in medical costs and another $7,500 in lost wages. Workers’ comp should cover those costs, but some employers might fight claims. An experienced California workers’ compensation attorney may be able to help appeal your injury claims and work to obtain fair compensation for you.