I Broke My Wrist at Work...
I work for a company that makes boxes and uses heavy machinery. I was working on the Corrugator Machine and the C-Clamp slipped off the belt that we were connecting together. I fell backward and landed on my hands, breaking my right wrist. I had a little pain in my left wrist.
The accident has been a life changing event for me. I am right handed and use it for everything. Now I need help from my fiance and others for things that I need done in my every day life, including eating, bathing, brushing my teeth, driving, dressing properly, etc.
I ended up with 3 broken bones in my wrist, 4 pins on both sides of my wrist and a 2 foot cast. The doctor is stressing that I might have arthritis for the rest of my life. I'm only 31 yrs old, and feel like my fiance and I are too young for this life changing event that will effect me well into the future.
I guess my question is, if I'm right handed and I broke my right wrist, are there extra benefits I can receive? Thanks for any help you can give.
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ANSWER for "I Broke My Wrist at Work...":
Murphy (Fayetteville, AR):
The advantages available under Workers Compensation laws in the State of Arkansas include guaranteed benefits for injuries sustained on the job, continued receipt of those benefits without having to sue anyone, and paid wages while recovering from your injuries.
The disadvantages of an in-place Workers Compensation system of insurance include prohibition against the recovery of amounts for Pain and Suffering or Mental Anguish.
Although from the facts you present you did not mention whether your company was covered by Workers Compensation insurance, we'll presume from your questions your company did have in place Workers Compensation insurance at the time of your injuries.
The benefits you're entitled to receive are those set out in the Workers Compensation Benefits Schedule for the State of Arkansas.
You will be able to continue receiving benefits until such time as your physicians clear you to return to work. If you are adjudged to be permanently disabled you may be able to receive adjusted long-term disability payments. You will also be eligible for retraining. If you're hoping to recover an additional amount over and above the negotiated settlement you will be disappointed.
There is some good news though. Although you are prohibited from filing a lawsuit against your employer, your are NOT prohibited from filing suit against the manufacturer of the Corrugators Machine.
If you seek the assistance of a skilled Personal Injury Attorne, you may be able to sue the manufacturer of the machine, IF your attorney can prove the machine was defective and as a result you were injured seriously.
We certainly would suggest you look closely at the issue of negligence and product liability. Your employer cannot prohibit you from filing suit against the manufacturer of the corrugated machine, and cannot take any punitive actions against you for doing so.
The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.
Best of luck,
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