On-the-job neck injuries are quite common and known for their long-term impact on the worker. These neck injuries often make life difficult for the worker long after the initial accident and sometimes require special care and intensive treatment.
Who’s at Risk for Workplace Neck Injuries?
Workplace neck injuries are usually the result of:
- Slips and falls
- Sudden movements
Since workplace neck injuries usually relate to physical movement, active workers in the following professions are at especially high risk of suffering this injury:
- Construction workers
- Hospital workers
- Warehouse workers
- Restaurant workers
Common Workplace Neck Injuries
Neck injuries do not occur with quite the same frequency as hand, leg, or back injuries. However, they still make up a significant share of standalone workers’ compensation claims.
Common workplace neck injuries include:
- Pinched nerves
- Herniated discs
- Bulging discs
- Cervical dislocations
Since many neck injuries are the result of sudden, unexpected movements, they may also lead to strains, sprains, and chronic conditions, including whiplash.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits
The Rhode Island workers’ compensation system is a special form of no-fault insurance designed to assist employees who are injured at work. Workers’ compensation can provide benefits for:
- Lost income
- Medical expenses
Types of Disability Benefits
Permanent Total Disability
Permanent total disability, or PTD, provides benefits for workers whose injuries are so severe that they are unable to ever return to work.
Permanent Partial Disability
Permanent partial disability, or PPD, provides benefits for injuries that prevent employees from returning to work at their former or full capacity.
Temporary Total Disability
Temporary total disability, or TTD, provides benefits for injuries that prevent an injured person from working initially but will eventually be fit enough to return to their original position.
If a death results from a workplace injury, the victim’s dependents—such as a non-working spouse or minor children—may receive benefits equal to the same rate that would have been paid for permanent total disability.
Until recently, the maximum weekly compensation rate was equal to 75% of the injured worker’s spendable base wage. However, injuries suffered after January 1, 2022, may only be compensated at 62% of the injured worker’s average weekly wage.
How to Receive Workers’ Compensation for a Neck Injury
While workers’ compensation is a publicly funded program, securing benefits can be challenging. Before filing a claim, you should:
Report the Injury
Rhode Island law requires that employees report injuries that require medical treatment, leave the employee unable to work for at least three full days, or result in death. Typically, fatalities must be reported within 48 hours, while non-fatal injuries must be reported within 10 days.
Seek Immediate Medical Attention
You should always seek immediate medical attention after any accident, even if you do not believe that your injuries are severe. In Rhode Island, injured workers have the right to choose their own doctor. However, they may be required to attend an “independent medical examination” if their employer or insurance company requests an additional opinion.
Contact an Attorney
An experienced Rhode Island workers’ compensation attorney could help you receive rapid relief, securing high-quality medical treatment immediately after you have been injured. When Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum accepts new workers’ compensation clients, we do everything we can to ensure that our clients understand their rights and their options for compensation.
Have You Been Injured on the Job in Rhode Island?
If you've been hurt at work, you need to speak with an experienced workers' compensation lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Warwick office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help work injury victims in Providence, Warwick, and all areas of Rhode Island.