Can I Claim Workers’ Compensation for a Burn at Work?
December 15, 2021
Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Philadelphia, PA Explains Burn Injuries and Workers’ Comp
One of the most notoriously painful injuries is a burn injury. Depending on the severity, the damage from a burn can affect tissue and the sensitive nerves underneath the skin, destroy blood vessels, and damage ligaments, tendons, and even bone. Most burn injuries also result in a prolonged absence from work, usually due to grafting surgeries, subsequent infections, and disabling pain requiring a person to take time off to heal and rest. One of the most common places where people may suffer a burn injury is at work, especially for individuals who are in construction, auto-repair, technician jobs, HVAC, and other physically demanding careers. But any employee could suffer a burn injury at work, and our workers’ comp lawyers in Philadelphia, PA, know that injured workers may be entitled to compensation for their lost wages and medical bills.
This is because Pennsylvania has a strong set of workers’ compensation statutes aimed to protect workers who suffer work-related injuries and illnesses. Our WC system is a no-fault benefits program that pays two-thirds (2/3s) of lost wages and medical bills to injured workers who are hurt on the job. Nearly all employers must have workers’ compensation insurance, and virtually all workers are covered—even part-time, seasonal, and temporary workers
Understanding WC and Burn Injuries
Workers who suffer a burn injury at work may be entitled to WC benefits. A burn is defined as “damage to your body’s tissues caused by heat, chemicals, electricity, sunlight, or radiation.” This means that individuals who have nothing to do with heat and fire could still suffer a burn injury from other sources, particularly electricity or chemicals.
There are three levels of burns, known as:
- First Degree Burns – mild but still quite painful, only to the outer layer of skin
- Second Degree Burns – moderate and very painful, causing damage to both the outer layer and under layer of skin
Third Degree Burns – severe and extremely painful, causing damage or destruction to layers of skin and tissue, affecting the deepest layer of tissue including the bone
Common Causes of Burn Injuries in Pennsylvania
There are several ways that an injured individual could suffer a burn injury at work. Many of these ways could be preventable, but some of these ways are due to unavoidable accidents. Some may even be partially the fault of the injured worker. However, workers’ compensation benefits are a “no-fault” benefits program. This means fault does not matter when it comes to assessing who is liable for a burn injury, only that it is caused to an employee due to work-related functions.
Some of the most common causes of burn injuries include the following:
- Cleaning agent burns
- Manufacturing chemical spills
- Friction burns
- Excessive work outside in the sun without protection
- Faulty equipment catching fire or exploding
- Injuries from microwaves that short-circuit (especially old, office kitchen ones), and
- Many other common sources of burn injuries in Pennsylvania.
Are You Out of Work From a Burn? You May Be Entitled To WC Benefits
If you suffered burns at work that keep you from working and cost you money in unexpected medical bills, you may have a workers’ compensation claim. Our experienced workers’ compensation lawyers in Philadelphia, PA, can help burn victims recover compensation for their lost wages and medical bills due to a workplace accident. Learn how Larry Pitt & Associates can help you by calling (888)-PITT-LAW or (877) 748-8529, or by sending us a message on our easy-to-use contact us box available here to schedule your FREE consultation.