May new and inexperienced employees apply for workers’ comp?

Blogs from August, 2022

Attorney Mark Rufo PC

Under the New Hampshire Workers’ Compensation Statute, employers must cover all injuries that occur in their workplaces. If you experience an on-the-job accident after starting a new job, you may apply for workers’ comp benefits to treat your injuries.

Employees accept a certain degree of reasonable risk when starting a new job and while learning how to perform their duties. Your employer, however, owes a duty of care to train you to carry out your tasks safely and correctly.

How often do new employees experience injuries?

According to a study reported by Insurance Journal, 35% of workplace injuries occur within 12 months after employees start their jobs. Researchers discovered that overexertion caused the greatest number of work-related injuries during a new employee’s first year.

Between 2015 and 2019, 22% of first-year accidents came from falls, slips and trips while working. New employees also experienced serious injuries from objects striking them and from punctures or cuts. The most expensive claims that employers covered related to new employees experiencing severe harm such as electric shocks or amputations.

Which workers face the greatest risk of injuries?

Employees starting new jobs in the restaurant industry filed 53% of the workers’ comp claims filed by first-year workers. The other half of the claims represented on-the-job injuries affecting first-year construction workers. Many workers experienced accidents while driving vehicles related to their duties. Travelers Insurance found that injuries within one year of starting a new job contributed to at least six million days off from work. The injuries occurred during a five-year study period.

Regardless of your unfamiliarity concerning your duties as a new hire, your employer must cover your workers’ comp claim even if your inexperience caused your injury. Your claim may not result in a rejection if you have not yet completed an employer’s training program.

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