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Anchorage Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Most workers face the same risks for on-the-job injuries

What do people who work here in Alaska have in common with people who work anywhere else in the country? They all share the risk of suffering from certain on-the-job injuries. Even when employers and employees take precautions to prevent these common injuries, they can still occur and require time off work and medical care to properly recover.

Construction workers are already aware that falling is one of the most common injuries they can suffer while working, but this threat is not limited to those who work in this industry. Anyone who works at a height, or slips or trips, runs this risk. People suffer injuries from falls that range from bumps and bruises to spinal cord or head injuries to death.

Elder law emcompasses more than just your estate planning needs

The population of the country as a whole is getting older, and Alaska is no exception. As part of that process, the needs of those individuals change. Many people assume that elder law focuses solely on estate planning for older people with different needs than their younger counterparts have, but that is not necessarily the case.

Of course, estate planning is a large part of this area of law. Even if you do not think you will need Medicaid in order to get the care you need as you age, preparing for that eventuality does not hurt. There are different avenues you can take to make sure you can pursue government benefits should you need them.

The data for workplace injuries may surprise some in Alaska

Anchorage's employers are required to provide a safe workplace to their employees. When that does not happen, the potential for workplace injuries increases when compared to others who take the safety of their employees seriously. Even so, the data regarding on-the-job injuries may surprise some people.

Most people do not realize that somewhere in the United States, a worker suffers a workplace injury every seven seconds. Some of them are probably right here in Anchorage. That equates to around 510 injuries every hour and approximately 4.5 million a year. 

What estate planning documents make up a good plan?

Like other Alaska residents, you may be considering taking steps to care for your family in the event of your death and you in the event of your incapacitation. You may know that estate planning could accomplish these goals, but you may not be familiar with the documents that make it happen. Below is a brief description of the documents that make up a good estate plan.

A last will and testament represents the cornerstone of an estate plan. This document outlines who receives what portion of your estate. You can also include specific bequests (gifts) of certain items to certain individuals. It also appoints someone to handle the administration of your estate, including probate proceedings.

Suspicions that could delay probate and estate administration

Did one of your loved ones choose you to serve as executor of his or her estate? In this position, you will be responsible for the completion of numerous tasks that could present a challenge -- and that is if everything goes smoothly. When someone has suspicions about the validity of the will or your dedication to your duties, it could delay probate and estate administration, which could further complicate your duties and your dealings in an Alaska court.

It is not enough that someone is not happy with an inheritance. The individual expressing suspicions can only bring a case before an Alaska court for certain reasons. Several common reasons for contesting a will exist. For instance, someone may dispute your fitness to serve as executor or could allege that you are not fulfilling your duties.

Don't jeopardize your workers' compensation benefits

Like others here in Anchorage, you go to work every day expecting to go home safe and sound at the end of your shift. Most days that may happen, but then something happens and you suffer injuries while at work. You know that you can receive workers' compensation benefits, but you are not sure what you need to do to get them.

If you fail to follow the proper procedures, you might not get those much needed benefits. Did you know that you have to report the injury to your employer as quickly as possible? This may not be easy if you suffer from a repetitive motion injury such as carpal tunnel, but as soon as a doctor provides you a diagnosis, you need to let your employer know. If you suffer an acute injury, which means that it just happened, you need to medical attention right away.

Study: Silica exposure risks high in chipping and crushing work

Major health risks can come with exposure to certain substances in the workplace. Silica is one such substance. Inhaling particles of it can create risks of developing serious respiratory conditions, such as silicosis.

Silica exposure is a particularly big safety concern in construction. According to OSHA estimates, a vast majority of the workers who face silica risks on the job are in construction.

What should estate planning accomplish?

When it comes to the big picture, the answer is the same for every Anchorage resident. Estate planning should provide for surviving loved ones upon death and provide for the individual upon incapacitation. It is the details that make this process different for everyone.

For this reason, each Anchorage resident would need to take stock of his or her situation and assets. Nothing can be done until an individual determines who will inherit and figures out what assets each person will receive. Moreover, he or she would need to choose trusted individuals to fulfill key roles in the estate plan such as an executor and/or a trustee if a trust is included in the plan.

Alaska: A particularly dangerous place for workers?

It appears that fatality risks may be particularly high in workplaces here in Alaska. Recently released federal data points to the state leading the nation in workplace deaths.

The statistics, from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, regard workplace death rates in the U.S. in 2017. According to this data, that year, Alaska saw 10.2 workplace deaths for every 100,000 full-time workers. This was just a little short of three times the national rate, which was 3.5 per 100,000. It was also the highest rate of any state in 2017.

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Law Office of Justin S. Eppler LLC

2525 Blueberry Rd
Suite 102
Anchorage, AK 99503

Phone: 907-302-5930
Fax: 907-677-6066
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