While working in an office may seem safer than elsewhere, office workers have many common injuries that qualify them for workers’ compensation. These injuries could result from accidents such as falling or tripping, from overuse or repetitive strain, or from environmental conditions.
Falling and Tripping Injuries
Office workers frequently fall or trip. The office can be a minefield of open filing cabinet drawers, poor lighting, hidden electrical cords, shaky chairs, falling objects, and wet floors. These hazards often lead to injuries that could include:
- Ankle sprains
- Bruises and abrasions
- Head injuries
- Broken bones
If you have been injured in a fall or by tripping, the insurance company could try to argue that there was no risk of falling in your office. See Dykhoff v. Xcel Energy, WCCA No. WC12-5436 (Dec. 26, 2013). You may need a workers’ compensation lawyer to help you build a case.
Overuse and Repetitive Strain
Moreover, repetitive strain or overuse injuries plague office workers. Many people use a computer mouse or type for hours on end without a break. This can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, among other arm and shoulder problems. Workers also may suffer from issues such as eye strain, muscle strains, back injuries from lifting, or back problems from uncomfortable seating. All of these injuries may qualify office workers for benefits. Even if you do not have an injury, talk to your employer about supplying more ergonomic working areas in the office.
Finally, environmental conditions are just as much of a concern in an office as in a factory. Offices tend to be poorly ventilated and could be very hot or very cold depending on the season. They may have mold, dirty carpets, or other conditions that lead to occupational diseases. Workers with allergies or asthma may suffer more than usual in poorly cleaned and ventilated offices. If you are suffering from these issues, talk to a workers’ compensation lawyer. Depending on your medical diagnosis and the office conditions, you could qualify for benefits to cover your medical treatment.
Need help getting workers’ compensation for your injury? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.