One of the types of workers compensation injuries in Southern MN results from exposure to certain chemicals or toxic substances. When an employee suffers a toxic chemical injury, he or she is typically entitled to workers compensation benefits.
In filing a claim, an employee does not have to prove that his/her employer was at fault or negligent in any way. The claim has only to do with one’s injury, its treatment and time away from work. In cases of more severe chemical exposure, workers may qualify for partial or full disability benefits.
Toxic chemical exposure is possible in a wide variety of workplace environments:
- Demolition sites
- Oil and natural gas wells
- Chemical manufacturing facilities
Under the terms of federal work safety laws enforced by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), employers must ensure a safe work environment even when workers are routinely around dangerous chemicals.
Worker safety is often addressed with equipment like gloves, goggles, helmets and even full body suits. Added ventilation via exhaust fans or heavy-duty air exchange systems is another way of minimizing exposure to toxic levels of substances.
Numerous Toxic Substances
Just as the number of workplace environments in which toxic chemical exposure toxic substances closure is possible it is more wide-ranging than many imagine so too are the number of chemicals that workers are exposed to more diverse than one might initially imagine:
Injuries typically occur through skin contact, inhalation or accidental ingestion.
The most common chemical exposure injuries include rashes, burns, throat and lung injuries. One of the more concerning types of toxic chemical exposure injury is neurological damage, including brain damage. This can result from either acute or long-term exposure. For example, fumes given off by paint and solvents can cause brain damage when inadequate protection or ventilation results in exposure at toxic levels.
Tips for Success With a Workers Comp Claim
Should toxic chemical exposure lead to injury, it is important for a workers compensation claim to go as smoothly as possible. Here are a few tips to get the best results:
- Immediately report the chemical exposure to a supervisor
- Explain precisely how the exposure happened
- Note any and all witnesses
- Seek appropriate medical treatment
- Emphasize to healthcare providers that you suffered a toxic chemical exposure
In general, thorough documentation is wise, from the initial injury to treatment to filing a claim.
Potential Third Party Involvement
In many complex work sites, there are often responsible parties other than one’s employer. If the negligent conduct of any one of these one or more of these individuals or businesses contributed to your toxic chemical injury, it is often possible to file a personal injury claim against that so-called “third party.”
Such claims are based on personal injury statutes that establish liability for negligent conduct. Unless it is reasonable to assert that negligent conduct lead to an injury, there is no basis for a personal injury claim.
An attorney focused on relevant areas of worker’s compensation and personal-injury law can help to determine any and all parties that might bear responsibility for your injury. Keep in mind that, when a personal injury suit is possible, such suits are often settled without a trial. Compensation may also increase, because a personal injury claim can seek monetary damages for pain and suffering as well.
If you or a family member is a victim of toxic chemical exposure, it is possible to get the help you need to obtain the full compensation you deserve under the law. Our firm offers a complimentary consultation with an attorney focused on relevant areas of workers compensation law. To learn more about our legal services for workers, please contact us.
Contact A Mankato Workers' Compensation Lawyer Today
Contact the law office of Chesley, Harvey & Carpenter today at (507) 625-3000 for a free case review. We are located in Mankato, Minnesota.