Former State's Attorney With Over 38 Years of Experience

Worker’s Compensation: Area Safety Protocol Violations

If workers get injured on the job due to violating workplace safety rules, they are still eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, this is as long as the workplace safety rule violation is not a purposeful act.

Your workplace and employer in any industry are subject to various safety regulations under federal and state laws, in this case, Illinois. The sole purpose of these laws is to protect you from unnecessary risks on the job.

Workplace Safety Guidelines

Employees must adhere to certain safety guidelines put in place by their employers in many workplaces. Depending on the type of employment and company, these rules often take on different forms.

However, they all typically outline how workers should perform their job to prevent workplace injuries and accidents and to stay safe. If an employee violates one or more of these rules and is injured in the process, they are still eligible for workers’ compensation benefits if the violation was not intentional.

Workers Comp Claims Requirements

If an employee violates work safety rules by mistake and suffers an injury, he or she may need to provide proof that the violation was not an intentional act so that they can claim workers compensation benefits. The worker may face serious consequences if it is determined that they violated the company safety rule on purpose.

If you claim compensation under such circumstances, it is a Class E felony offense. You are liable to pay an amount that is double the worth of the fraud or a $10,000 fine, whichever amount is higher. Additionally, your workers’ compensation claim may be dismissed if you are aware of the violation but choose to ignore the risks.

Common Types of Safety Protocol Violations

Below are some of the most common safety protocol violations committed by workers, as recorded by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA):

Insufficient Hazard Communication

This occurs when workers are not adequately warned about the risk associated with hazardous chemicals and substances. All workers with hazardous substances in their place of work must have safety data sheets for their exposed employees and labels. According to OSHA, they must also train the workers to handle the chemicals appropriately.

Insufficient Fall Protection

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), falls are the third leading cause of workplace injuries. They are also the second most common cause of construction site deaths. Falls often occur due to temporary or permanent unsafe and missing railings, walkway obstructions, uneven surfaces, and other factors.

Faulty, Defective, and Dangerous Scaffolding

Scaffolding-related accidents account for a substantial portion of construction site fall-associated injuries. Falling objects from inadequately protected scaffolding can injure workers and other people below too. Approximately three-quarters of all scaffolding accidents involve the following, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

  • Employees slipping on scaffolding
  • Supports or planking giving way
  • Employees getting struck by falling objects

Insufficient Respiratory Protection

Workers are at risk of various illnesses and occupational injuries if they do not have proper respiratory protection. These can be from lung damage, burns, different types of cancers, and more. Proper protection must be provided to all workers exposed to harmful particulates and fumes.

Insufficient Face and Eye Protection

Employees in different industries require face and eye protection to prevent injuries on the job. In addition to protective eyewear such as goggles, they can also use face shields and masks to protect them from debris, flying objects, flashing lights, electrical currents (e.g., from welding) noxious fumes, and other dangers

Factors Affecting Illinois Worker’s Compensation Claims

A few factors can impact your lawsuit if a worker’s claim gets denied due to a violation of a workplace safety rule. Workers comp lawyers will want to know the following:

  • Were they aware of their normal job task?
  • At the time of the injury, were they performing the task for the benefit of their employer?
  • Were they aware of their injury risk?
  • Were they aware of violating the company safety rule at the time of the injury?
  • Were they performing their normal assigned job tasks?

The answers to the above-mentioned questions can negatively or positively affect your workers’ comp claim and benefits. Consult your workers’ comp attorney about the matter. In some instances, a worker’s compensation claim may be denied because you were not performing your normal job task at the time of the injury.

This is regardless of whether or not the violation was an honest mistake. When this happens, an experienced Illinois workers’ compensation attorney can file an appeal to review your claim. In this state, workers’ compensation claims can involve various self-inflicted, intentional injuries or death that do not qualify for compensation benefits.

Notice of Discovery – Illinois workers’ compensation law states that workers should file their compensation claim within a certain time frame based on the injury date.

Notice of Injury – An injured worker must notify their employer of the injury as soon as possible after suffering it, but not later than 45 days after the incident.

Filing Procedures – Your workers’ compensation lawyers will file a claim with the Illinois Workers Compensation Commission. An arbitrator will be assigned to the case to review it. If they deny the claim, your workers’ compensation lawyer can file an appeal within 30 days from the date of denial.

Hire an Experienced Workers’ Compensation Attorney in Illinois Today

Workplace safety protocol violations can result in serious injuries with long-term impacts on the quality of your life. Contact Michael J. Brennan if you have suffered workplace injury because you deserve full and fair compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and more.

As an experienced workers’ comp lawyer, he has been offering unequaled personal injury attorney services to injured workers in Illinois and the surrounding neighborhoods for years. You can rest assured your workers’ compensation claim and negotiations with the workers’ compensation insurance company are in the best possible hands with him.

For information, visit our Chicago office, or call 708-694-9728 for a free case evaluation.

Get a Free Case Evaluation

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.