According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, hand and finger injuries are the second most common injuries in the workplace. But the nature of these types of injuries can vary in severity. That’s why workers comp settlement for hand injuries tend to vary widely too. In most cases, the injured worker can claim anywhere from $12,000 to as much as $200,000.
Most work-related hand injuries are caused by cuts and lacerations. But repetitive strains can also cause wear and tear to your wrist joints leading to carpal tunnel syndrome. This is why hand injuries tend to be more common in factory workers and those working desk jobs.
They may not seem that of a big deal but hand injuries can get you off work for days at best. Or lead to permanent disability at worst. Either way, it can affect your finances and may even leave you homeless. Not to mention the amount of medical fees you’ll have to contend with.
That’s what workers’ compensation benefits are for. It ensures that you’ll have food on the table and pay for your medical expenses even if you can’t work for months. And if you can prove that your injury is work-related, then you should be eligible for workers comp benefits.
Common Hand Injuries
In addition to more than 20 tiny bones, each of our hands also consists of tendons, ligaments, nerves, and muscles. It’s also the most used part of the body, particularly when we’re working. From picking up small things to lifting heavy objects, we use our hands for basically everything. It’s no wonder why it’s also the most prone to injuries.
Here are some of the most common hand injuries in the workplace:
1. Cuts and Lacerations
This is one of the most common types of hand injury and sometimes it’s inevitable. But some cuts and lacerations can be so deep that it leads to permanent disability.
Most amputation injuries are caused by improper use of tools and equipment. Though they’re quite rare, amputations almost always lead to permanent disability.
Like cuts and lacerations, sprains are also common in the workplace. It happens when our hand is subjected to a sudden and extreme strain that tears the ligaments.
Fractures and broken bones can take months to heal and usually requires surgery and rehabilitative treatments.
A dislocation happens when a bone is forced out of its usual alignment.
People working in jobs that involve handling hot objects, toxic chemicals, and high-voltage electricity are at a greater risk of burning their hands while at work.
7. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a type of nerve injury that when left untreated can have serious consequences. It’s usually caused by repetitive motions for a long time that compresses the median nerve.
How Workers Comp Settlement is Computed
There are a lot of factors that affect your workers comp settlement amount. This includes the severity of your injury, the required treatments, and how it affects your earning capacity.
In general, your workers comp settlement will include medical benefits and compensation for lost wages. The latter may include both temporary and permanent disability benefits depending on your injury. In Florida, for instance, you can receive temporary disability benefits for more than 104 weeks.
When you’ve reached your Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), your disability will be assessed. If your condition is deemed permanent, you may be entitled to permanent disability benefits.
Calculations for permanent disability benefits vary per state. Most states follow a schedule of losses which lists specific injuries and how many weeks worth of compensation you can get for each. But some states like Florida use an impairment rating to calculate benefits.
If you choose to receive a lump sum settlement, the total amount will include all benefits you’re entitled to. You won’t be able to ask your employer for more once your money runs out. But if you choose staggered payments, you’ll receive just a small initial amount and a monthly payment until you can get back to work.
Should You Hire a Lawyer?
Technically, you can settle your workers comp claim by yourself without the help of a lawyer. But remember that employers and insurance companies are out to make money. So expect that they’ll pay you as little as they can legally get away with.
Besides, some hand injuries can be difficult to prove that it’s work-related. That’s why most workers comp claims for hand injuries often get denied.
Hiring an experienced workers compensation lawyer like Victor Malca will give you the best chance at getting the benefits you rightfully deserve. He has decades of experience negotiating with employers and fighting for the rights of injured workers in Florida. He can fight for you too. Call us now for a free consultation.
VICTOR MALCA LAW – A TRUSTED NAME IN FLORIDA
Victor Malca Law has over 25 years of litigation experience, we are the most trusted workers’ compensation lawyers in Florida. Our area of expertise is in representing injured workers on compensation benefit cases and disabled individuals claim social security disability benefits.
Our unwavering advocacy for employee rights and privileges are also recognized by our peers. Book a free consultation today.
About The Author
Judy Ponio is a writer for Victor Malca Law P.A. and enjoys helping people with questions about social security, workers compensation, and other serious matters involving people’s livelihood. She is not an attorney and her writing should not be considered legal advice.