Whether hiring or firing, companies have an obligation to prevent North Carolina work accidents

The job market continues to give out mixed signals. Job openings are at their highest level in 2 years and the majority of the nation’s 372 metro areas reported year-over year increases in employment. Yet the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this month that the nationwide unemployment rate edged up to 9.8 percent, even as worker productivity increased by more than 2 percent.

Our North Carolina workers’ compensation lawyers understand the challenges many employees face in the current job market. Too often, they are being asked to do more with less than ever before. They are doing multiple jobs due to layoffs and downsizing. Often they have had their pay cut or have not received raises in recent years. In many cases, work-safety personnel have been downsized and employee wellness programs have dried up and blown away.

In such environments, employees can be hesitant to report a North Carolina work accident for fear of job loss or retaliation. However, reporting an injury while on the job is critical to protecting your rights and the financial well-being of you and your family. Rules are in place to prevent employers from retaliating against injured workers. Of course, you will need to assert your rights. The best bet if you or a loved one is seriously injured on the job is to contact a work injury lawyer in North Carolina to discuss your rights.

The employment picture is a little brighter in North Carolina, where the unemployment rate has dropped in 66 of North Carolina’s 100 counties, the North Carolina News Network reported.

“Over the year, we have seen unemployment rates decline in 90 counties,” said state Employment Security Commission Chairman Lynn R. Holmes. “We continue to face economic challenges with respect to job growth, but we at ESC continue to assist those looking for work and those who qualify for unemployment benefits.”

Thirty-seven counties still have a jobless rate greater than 10 percent. Forty-five counties had a rate at or below the statewide rate of 9.1 percent. Scotland and Edgecombe counties had an unemployment rate of more than 14 percent.

When companies return to hiring mode, they are also responsible for making sure that new employees receive all of the proper training and safety equipment necessary to help reduce their risk of a work accident.

If you are dealing with a work accident in North Carolina or are dealing with a worker’s compensation or disability claim, contact the Law Offices of Lee & Smith today for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call 800-887-1965.

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