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Summaries of workplace injuries and illnesses must be posted

Most employers in Louisiana and across the United States are mandated to post the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's "Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses" each year. Recently, the agency reminded companies to post their summaries for 2016.

Employers are required to post the summaries in work areas where employee notices are normally displayed. These summaries are supposed to remain up from Feb. 1 through April 30 of every year for the prior year's summaries. They are required even for employers that had no recordable injuries or illnesses. Employers that have 10 or fewer employees are not required to post the summaries.

OSHA reports that the recordkeeping and reporting rules are in place so that employees and employers are better able to evaluate the hazards that are present in their workplaces. The summaries are also meant to provide guidance to workers so that they can protect themselves and to employers so that they can implement needed changes. Some covered employers are also required to submit data from their reports to OSHA, a requirement that began on Jan. 1, 2017.

Workers who contract occupational diseases or suffer workplace injuries are able to file claims for benefits with their employers' workers' compensation insurance carriers. Some employers and insurance companies dispute employee claims for benefits. When this happens, the injured workers may want to consult with experienced workers' compensation lawyers. Attorneys may gather the evidence that may be needed to support their clients' benefits claims. They may also identify additional benefits categories to which their clients might be entitled. If the workers are left with temporary or permanent partial or total disabilities because of their workplace injuries, the attorneys may fight to recover monthly total or partial disability benefits.

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