A harrowing trench collapse in Montgomery County has left two workers injured. The men were part of a crew working at a residence in Potomac. They were down in the trench and working on the home's foundation when the ground beneath them collapsed. One man was reportedly buried in wet mud up to his waist, and the other man was buried up to his shoulders.
Under the Maryland Workers' Compensation Act, employees who have suffered work-related injuries or illnesses are entitled to the following benefits:
In May, at a former steel mill at Sparrows Point in Baltimore County, a building collapse injured nine workers who were removing asbestos from the site. At the time of the accident, the workers were reportedly 40 feet in the air, and an investigation by the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Administration is still underway.
It's a fact of modern life that people are always "coming and going." "Going and coming" is a concept in workers' compensation that means that workers cannot recover for the injuries they suffer when they are on the way to work or on their way home. The rule is based on the idea that compensation in such situations is not warranted because getting to work is the employee's responsibility and does not involve advancing the employer's interests.
Maximum medical improvement is an important concept in workers' compensation cases. Maximum medical improvement (MMI) occurs when an injured employee has reached the maximum benefit that can be obtained from medical care. At that point, a doctor can evaluate any lingering impairment to determine the extent of the permanent injury to the employee's body.
Workers' comp claims involving obesity could increase because of a recent ruling by the American Medical Association (AMA). The AMA declared in June that obesity is a disease.
An employee's firing does not bar workers' compensation benefits if the claimant's evidence demonstrates that his or her disability caused the subsequent inability to find work, the Court of Special Appeals has ruled. The court's ruling stems from a lawsuit involving an injured worker receiving benefits who was fired after his assertion that he had not worked for a business he owned on the side was contradicted by video surveillance.
There are several bills dealing with workers' compensation matters in the General Assembly this year. A bill that would allow commission decisions to be emailed and a bill that would expand punishment for employers who retaliate against workers who file workers' compensation claims are making the rounds in Annapolis.
Maryland was the first state to put into place workers' compensation laws, passing such a law in the early 1900s. All Maryland employers are covered under workers' compensation insurance or have insurance in place to satisfy such claims. Injured workers seeking workers' compensation benefits have to show that the injury or illness is work-related. In most instances, if you were doing something for the benefit of your employer and you were injured or became ill as a result of that activity, then your injury or illness is work-related and you can receive benefits.
One of the scourges of the modern-day world is mold and the impact of exposure upon our health. In a recent court case, Maryland's Court of Special Appeals decided that a doctor's opinion that exposure to mold led to a raft of problems for workers in a water-damaged building was not scientifically valid under the standard presently used in the Maryland court system.