The North Carolina Industrial Commission announced the maximum weekly benefit for 2011 is $836. This is a mere $2 increase from last year and is the smallest increase in over 25 years.
North Carolina workers’ compensation attorneys continue to fight for the rights of workers injured on the job throughout the Carolinas. Each year, we help countless clients who come through the door in need of workers’ compensation cases in Greensboro, Asheville and Winston-Salem.
Injuries in the workplace are a common occurrence in North Carolina and throughout the country. We previously posted on our North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog that recent statistics indicate over 4,000 people die in the workplace each year. Nationwide, there are over 7 million jobsites with more than 130 million workers.
Almost 4 percent of workers today suffer from a serious workplace illness or injury. Most people may think this is a positive, but be reminded that unemployment rates are still far below what they should be and companies have cut the hours worked by an average of 6% in 2009.
The United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the following additional fatal occupational injury statistics:
-Wholesale trade industry reported a higher number of fatal work injuries than most private industry sectors.
-Workplace suicides were reportedly down by 10% from 2008, but were still reported at over 200 deaths in 2009.
-Non-Hispanic or African-American fatal work injuries were down in 2009, but the number of hours worked for this work group was also down substantially.
-Building and grounds cleaning, and maintenance jobs saw a rise in fatal workplace injuries by 6% from 2008.
-Transportation incidents accounted for two-fifths of all fatal work injuries in 2009.
According to North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC), the weekly compensation for injured workers was maxed out at $228 per week in 1982. By 1992, the weekly compensation almost doubled at $426 per week. Ten years later, the maximum weekly compensation for injured workers was $654 in 2002. Each decade has seen an increase of nearly $200 or more. Based on the recent $2 increase for 2011, North Carolina is looking at a 10 year low by 2012. The increase in weekly compensation stands right now at $182 over the last 9 years which is well below the 10 year average increase of the last few decades.
North Carolina workers injured on the job should seek the advice of legal counsel. Knowing your rights is the first step in protecting yourself so make an appointment today.
If you have been injured or have a question about a workers’ compensation claim, contact the Law Offices of Lee & Smith. Call for a free initial consultation at 1-800-887-1965.