Saws are extremely useful in carpentry, construction, and other industries, but they are also dangerous and may cause catastrophic injuries. Lacerations are the most common injury, but amputations may also happen. Kickback may occur, which is when wood suddenly propels toward the operator of a table saw, hitting the face, chest, or torso of the operator. When wood is set against the fence of the table saw, it may lose its pressure there, drifting away from the fence and getting caught on the back of the saw so that it jerks in the direction of the blade toward the operator of the saw. If you are injured in a saw accident on the job, the experienced Boston workers’ compensation attorneys at Pulgini & Norton may be able to help.Pursuing Benefits After a Saw Accident
Saw accidents that result in a laceration, an amputation, or another serious injury may also be disabling. For example, if your thumb is cut off by a saw while working as a carpenter, you may no longer be able to work at your job, or you may not be able to do certain tasks that your job requires you to perform. The workers' compensation system in Massachusetts was designed to make it easier for workers to recover benefits after suffering job-related injuries, such as those inflicted by saws.
Most employers in Massachusetts are required to carry workers' compensation insurance. This is a type of no-fault insurance that should provide benefits even if you are partially or fully to blame for the injuries that you suffered. Unfortunately, many valid claims are denied by insurers, even claims when the injuries are obvious, such as lacerations or amputations. You should not assume that a denial of your claim is valid. When you receive a denial form, you may take the matter to the Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA), which runs administrative courts that decide workers' compensation claims.
Among other benefits, you may qualify for disability benefits if you have been left unable to work for five or more days. These are awarded based on the extent of the disability—whether it is permanent or temporary and partial or full. The benefits for a temporary and total disability, for example, are 60% of your pre-tax and pre-benefits average weekly wage. The amount of your gross earnings for the 52 weeks before you were hurt is divided by 52 to get the average weekly wage, and then this is multiplied by 60% to determine what you would get per week. The most that you may receive, however, is the average weekly wage for the state at the time that you were injured.
You may get these benefits for up to 156 weeks. You are only compensated for the first five days of disability starting on the sixth day, unless your disability lasts 21 or more days. If your injuries turn out to be permanent, you may receive permanent disability benefits.
Sometimes a saw may cause the permanent loss of a bodily function, such as the use of a limb, or disfigurement. This is compensable. For example, you may get a one-time disfigurement or scarring benefit if you are disfigured on your hands, neck, or face. The amount of this benefit depends on the severity of the disfigurement or scarring.Explore Your Options with a Job Injury Attorney in Boston
If you suffer injuries in a job-related saw accident, you likely are entitled to workers' compensation benefits. The Boston lawyers at Pulgini & Norton may be able to provide you with legal representation and advice. We handle claims in Waltham, Braintree, Cambridge, and elsewhere in Massachusetts. For a free consultation with a job injury attorney, contact us online or call us at 781-843-2200.