The History Of Workers Compensation In The US

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries workplace injuries were common and often fatal. This increase in injuries had a lot to do with the rapid growth of industry at that time and the demands placed on the workforce for increased productivity. There was no organized way to compensated workers that were injured and a way was needed to compensate those injured by machinery or a result of the working conditions. Workers compensation insurance was born and along with it the need for a worker’s compensation attorney in El Monte to stand up for those that were denied their rightful benefits.

Before workers compensation laws were enacted if a worker was injured on the job he either suffered in silence or hired an attorney in an attempt to sue the employer. At that time the attorney was tasked with recovering the employees lost wages, recovering all medical expenses paid and if the injury warranted it, compensation for future lost income. Rarely did these cases prosper; unfortunately for the injured worker rarely was a decision rendered in favor of him. In any event, regardless of the way the decision went the trust between worker and employer was broken, never to be repaired.

If the case went to court, the lawyers of the employers had their defenses prepared, the normal defense they used included:

* The job is risky but the employee accepted the job regardless
*  The injury was caused by a negligent co-worker, the company was not at fault
* It was worker who was negligent, it was this that lead to the accident

In the rare case when the court awarded a settlement to the worker he would often have to wait a very long time to see the money. For a worker who could no longer earn a living, plus the legal fees he accrued, the effects were devastating.

The first workers compensation law to take effect in the United States was passed in 1908 and between then and 1920, most states had firmed up their own complimentary laws.

What are the benefits of workers compensation?

Today, if a worker is injured or killed on the job; workers compensation provides either the worker or his heirs with compensation. At times the compensation covers all the conditions but there are times when it does not. The downside of workers compensation is that, unless the circumstances warrant it, the injured worker cannot sue the employer. In most cases if he accepts the workers compensation deal, by default the worker gives up any future recompense.

If you are injured at work you should consider consulting with a workers compensation attorney in El Monte as you may wish to challenge the compensation granted or the employer position is that the claimed amount is excessive.

In many cases it is difficult to foresee if a workplace injury will give long term problems or not and it may not be in your best interest to accept workers comp. If you wish to discuss your situation with a workers compensation attorney in El Monte you are invited to contact the Law Offices of Norman J. Homen.

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