The Allentown workers’ comp lawyers at Munley Law represent warehouse and distribution center workers in the Lehigh Valley
Warehouse workers provide a valuable link in the world of commerce. They ensure efficient distribution of goods from manufacturers to consumers. All types of businesses that create products utilize warehouses. Amazon and other distribution companies store these products and ship orders. Warehouse workers face risk daily. Warehouse facilities are filled with moving equipment which can cause debilitating, or potentially life-threatening injury.
Working amid conveyor belts and motorized vehicles for moving pallets and transporting orders for shipment is especially dangerous after long hours on the job. If you or a loved one has experienced an injury in a warehouse accident in the Lehigh County, Pennsylvania region, you may be eligible for significant benefits. Legal advice or action is sometimes needed to secure payment. Don’t hesitate to contact an Allentown workers’ comp lawyer for a free consultation.
Allentown offers job opportunities for many warehouse and distribution workers
In recent years, the Lehigh Valley has become a regional hub for warehouses and distribution centers. Over a short period of time, 26 million square feet of warehouse space have been developed throughout the Valley, including in Allentown and surrounding cities. These types of operations, along with transportation, employ nearly a tenth of the local workforce, according to a Workforce Board Lehigh Valley study. FedEx, Amazon, Home Depot, and other fulfillment and distribution centers have been some of the companies that are present in the region.
Allentown has rebounded since the days of the 1980s; the closing of the steel mills and the fluctuating economy that followed. Today, the economy of this city with the third-largest population in the state is growing. A leader in several important business sectors, the region offers bountiful opportunities for job seekers.
The most in-demand worker these days is the warehouse worker. Other positions that support inventory management and distribution are also receiving recognition, now more than ever since the pandemic showcased the importance of efficient supply chain maintenance.
A position in a warehouse or in a distribution-related profession that plays a role in keeping the engine of commerce running can be quite fulfilling. But these jobs do include risk. Lehigh Valley workers’ comp attorneys exist to help injured workers employed in warehouse and distribution, as well as all categories of employment, in obtaining the benefits they deserve.
Workers’ comp for warehouse workers in the Allentown region
All persons classified as traditional employees are typically covered by workers’ compensation, maintained by their employer. Employers are legally required, in most cases, to provide this coverage.
But warehouse workers, as well as all categories of employees, may encounter difficulties accessing benefits on their own. Insurance companies may deny claims. Employers do not always do their part to help workers receive the benefits they deserve.
Employers often misclassify warehouse worker status. Usually, warehouse workers serve as traditional employees, under Pennsylvania law guidelines. That status qualifies them for workers’ comp coverage.
But sometimes, they are mistakenly assumed to be working as independent contractors. Independent contractors are not entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. In some cases, they may be intentionally classified improperly in the intent to save money.
An Allentown workers’ comp lawyer can help determine how you should be classified by your employer. A skilled Lehigh County workers’ comp attorney can also evaluate what benefits you are qualified to receive, if injured on-the-job, and provide answers to questions concerning your claim.
Common injuries suffered by warehouse workers
A wide range of hazards threatens warehouse workers.
In addition to the dangers of:
- Slips and falls.
- Forklift accidents.
- Chemical and other hazardous spills.
- Burns from fires.
. . . there is always the danger of serious injury or fatality if large stacks of heavy objects become unbalanced and fall from above, landing on top of workers.
And warehouse workers often suffer acute injuries like:
- Sprains and strains.
Many injuries or simply the condition of overexertion result in chronic symptoms like:
- Back pain.
General working conditions can trigger ongoing symptoms of medical issues caused by overuse and repetitive motion injuries triggered by:
- Frequent lifting, twisting, bending, stacking, reaching.
Illnesses caused by workplace conditions may also qualify for benefits.
If you are uncertain whether your injury or illness can be connected to your workplace, but you believe that to be the case, call us to discuss whether you may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.
Working conditions have come a long way in recent years, but they are still far from optimal. Warehouse workers themselves, along with National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) representatives speak out on the dangers in this article dated December 31, 2020.
OSHA offers a pocket guide on Warehousing in its worker safety series, to help warehouse employees recognize unsafe conditions in the workplace. But even if complete compliance with safety requirements could be accomplished in every workplace, the job of warehouse worker will always hold a higher level of risk than many other professions.
So if you live and work in the Allentown region, you can count on a Lehigh County workers’ comp lawyer to serve as a knowledgeable resource regarding claims for work-related injuries.
Unique hazards for workers in the warehouse and distribution industry
Overexertion is reported as a particular danger at certain distribution centers, which are believed by some to maintain an unreasonably high-level focus on speed and response. Overexertion which results in reduced alertness, along with muscle weakness and fatigue, makes workers more likely to suffer accidents.
If you, a friend, or a family member is employed in a facility with high demands regarding speed and response of order fulfillment, you may want to obtain a copy of A guide to the details of Overexertion Claims and Workers’ Compensation. If you believe you may qualify for this type of claim, consult a Munley Law Allentown workers’ compensation attorney.
The Allentown workers’ comp lawyers at Munley Law handle all types of warehouse job-related injuries
No matter what type of injury you’ve suffered, if it’s directly job-related, you are entitled to seek workers’ comp benefits. Even injuries incurred while driving or being transported in a vehicle while on the job, qualify for workers’ comp benefits.
How a Lehigh County work injury lawyer can help
Munley Law Lehigh County workers’ compensation attorneys offer skilled and knowledgeable, risk-free assistance. Workers’ comp laws differ somewhat from state to state.
In Pennsylvania, as in other states, they are filled with confusing details. Often, claims are challenged by the Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers’ Compensation or by employers. Legal assistance can help you receive the benefits you deserve.
If you are qualified to receive compensation, a Munley Law workers’ compensation attorney can:
- Make certain your claim is submitted on time.
- Gather evidence to support your case.
- If necessary, discuss your injury details with medical experts to determine the potential impact upon your future working abilities.
- Negotiate on your behalf with insurance companies.
- If the initial claim is denied, your lawyer can file an appeal and represent you in court, if needed.
There is no need to worry about out-of-pocket, upfront expenses. If you’ve been injured at work in Allentown, Easton, Bethlehem, Whitehall, or anywhere in Lehigh County. Our Munley Law workers’ comp attorneys will be happy to offer a free consultation.
If you are entitled to benefits, we will represent you at no cost, until we are successful in securing payment.
Frequently Asked Questions About Workers’ Comp for Warehouse Employees
Q: What type of workers’ compensation benefits are provided by law in Pennsylvania?
Workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania, with certain restrictions, covers medical expenses, lost wages, disability benefits if the injury prevents return to work. Regarding the replacement of lost wages for the time a worker is unable to return to work, the Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers’ Compensation website states:
“. . . two-thirds of the workers’ salary for total disability (up to a maximum dollar amount provided by law) is paid for the time lost from work as a result of the work-related disability if the disability lasts longer than seven calendar days. There is no maximum payment period. Payments are made for the duration of the disability. These payments are tax-free.”
Q: What should I do after being injured in an accident as a warehouse or distribution worker?
As soon as possible after the injury-causing accident, report it to your supervisor. Fill out an incident report, explaining what happened. It is required that you notify your supervisor within 120 days from the date of injury.
Failure to report your injury promptly risks denial of your claim. Even if an injury seems minor at the time, it is advisable to report it. Symptoms may intensify as time passes.
You may be contacted by a workers’ compensation insurance representative, asking for details, following your report. Do not sign any insurance document or offer of settlement without consulting with a workers’ compensation lawyer first.
If your claim is denied, or if you have questions about details, contact Munley Law for a free consultation. A workers’ comp case must be filed within three years of the date the injury occurred.
Q: How soon will I receive benefits?
If your case is not delayed or denied, your benefits should be issued approximately 21 days after your injury was reported to your employer. However, insurance companies may delay the process or initially deny benefits.
Q: What if my workers’ comp claim is denied?
Don’t be overly concerned. But it’s time to call for expert help.
Workers’ comp claims are commonly denied. Skilled and caring legal representation, like that of Munley Law’s Allentown workers’ comp lawyers, can help ensure the best chance of receiving the benefits you deserve. They can help you navigate the workers’ comp appeal process and represent you if your case requires a court appearance.
Q: Am I covered by workers’ compensation even if I’m not a union member?
Yes. Unions protect the health, safety, and working conditions of workers. But many workers don’t have access to union membership.
Workers at Amazon, Chewy, and other warehouses cropping up across Lehigh County, may want to check out this post on how unionization efforts recently unfolded for Amazon workers, to better understand details surrounding unionization.
Without a union, it may be more difficult to obtain workers’ compensation benefits if you’re injured on the job, But even without a union, there is help. Workers’ compensation laws protect the safety and health of all employees of the many warehouse and distribution workers in Lehigh County and across the U.S.
Q: I am a member of a union. Is the process the same?
Not exactly. The process of filing for workers’ comp benefits differs slightly from that of a non-union employee.
A work injury lawyer must review your union contract and inform you of the proper manner of reporting your injury and how to file for wage and medical benefits before you begin the process.
You may then hire either a union lawyer or a private lawyer specializing in Pennsylvania workers’ compensation to help you obtain benefits.
Q: How will I know when to contact a workers’ compensation lawyer?
It’s never too soon for a free consultation. Don’t wait until the time limit to file a claim passes or the statute of limitations expires. Then it will be too late to take legal action if your claim was denied.
There is no reason to wait since Munley Law workers’ comp attorneys work on contingency. That means we will discuss your case without a fee and determine the best course of action. If we represent you, there is no payment due until you are awarded benefits.
A leading workers’ compensation lawyer in Allentown, Pennsylvania
With the assistance of a skilled workers’ compensation attorney, workers’ comp for warehouse workers serves as a valuable backup plan for obtaining medical care and paying the bills when working conditions cause or contribute to an injury, or other types of job-related, chronic, and painful conditions.
Still not certain how to proceed with your claim? Facing difficulties in collecting benefits? Contact Munley Law, a Leading Allentown Workers’ Compensation Lawyer by calling us, filling out a contact form, or via online chat, for a free consultation.
Our Allentown-based Lehigh County workers’ compensation attorneys offer the superior skill and dedication you need to obtain the compensation you deserve. If you or a friend or relative experienced an injury or health condition related to warehouse or distribution employment in the Allentown area, we will be happy to help.