Carpenters are exposed to a number of potential injuries that are typical of the job they do. Some carpenters are much more likely to be injured than others, but accidents can happen in any workplace and so can chronic sickness caused by long term exposure to noise and pollutants.
Fortunately, most states have laws that ensure that the vast majority of workers, including carpenters that do not work for themselves, are insured by their employers’ workers’ compensation coverage.
A successful workers’ compensation claim following a workplace accident or illness can help pay expensive medical bills as well as compensate for lost wages or temporary or permanent disability.
Lost Wages as Part of a Carpenter’s WC Claim
Carpenters are skilled tradesmen and women. They may be eligible for workers’ compensation if they are not self-employed, but work for an employer and are injured at work or suffer from a chronic workplace related sickness. Carpenters’ hourly and annual wages vary considerably from one part of the country to another, but on average earn $23.40 an hour and $48,340 a year.
If you are a carpenter and are claiming workers’ compensation your wage at the time of the injury will be used to calculate the lost wage component of your claim. A successful claim will usually include a portion of any wage that you have lost through an inability to return to work.
Payment Based on Injuries While employed as a Carpenter
Carpenters are exposed to a number of potential injury/illness scenarios at work. These include:
- Exposure to excessive noise from machinery or tools they use;
- Cancer risk from prolonged exposure to wood dust or glues;
- Burns from combustible material in the workshop;
- Entanglement with machinery;
- Eye injury from pieces of wood, broken tools, metal or plastic;
- Dermatitis, or other allergic reactions to wood resin, glues, solvents and other chemicals;
- Illness from prolonged exposure to moulds, fungi and bacteria.
Injuries and illnesses may mean temporary or permanent disability benefits being paid out in a successful workers’ compensation claim.
Temporary disability usually means a return to work, but it may mean that the carpenter cannot do exactly the same type of work for a short period (temporary partial disability) or cannot return to work at all for a short time (temporary total disability).
Permanent disability for a carpenter may mean that he or she cannot return to work at all (permanent total disability) or may never be able to do the same type of job again yet still do some of the work (permanent partial disability).
How Convincing Evidence Can Help Back Up Your Claim
An injured or sick carpenter who is claiming workers’ compensation will find that there is a lot of paperwork they have to complete. It usually helps to provide evidence of what went wrong and how much it has cost you. For example:
- Doctor’s bills, hospital bills and any other bills relevant to the injury or illness including the cost of transport to and from a medical institution;
- Evidence of what the specific injury was and how it was caused as well as the fact that it happened at work. Doctors’ reports can help here. So can any statements from fellow workers who saw what happened or were witnesses to the events that led to your injury or illness developing.
Talk to an Attorney if Struggling With Your WC Claim
Being injured or feeling sick because of a workplace accident or illness is bad enough, but having to wade through paperwork and argue your case for adequate workers’ compensation can be trying. Sometimes it all becomes too much and then it may be easier to leave the claim to an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
If you discover that your employer was uninsured or your claim is denied by your employer’s insurance carrier, this may be the only way forward to recover compensation for a workplace injury or illness. A workers’ compensation attorney can assess your case dispassionately and suggest the best option going forward.