Due to your Social Security disability and retirement benefits being determined by an average of your historical earnings, having little or no income for a period of time can lower your monthly Social Security benefits when you need to use them. To decrease the impact of these little or no income periods on your overall benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) created a “disability freeze.” A disability freeze is a period where the SSA won’t consider your income when calculating your future benefits. Read the rest »
When a decision is made regarding your application for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will inform you of their decision as to whether or not they have agreed to grant you SSDI benefits by mail. If the SSA has denied your SSDI claim, you will receive a “denial letter.” If the SSA has approved your SSDI claim you will receive an “award letter.” Read the rest »
There are many hazards on construction sites that can result in serious and even fatal injuries. Here are four of the most common types of incidents on Los Angeles construction sites that lead to worker fatalities:
- Falls: Falls from ladders, scaffolds, and roofs are particularly common and dangerous. According to the Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA), of the 828 total fatalities in the construction industry that occurred in the year 2013, 291 involved falls to a lower level. These types of accidents are often preventable through the use of proper safety measures. Employers must plan projects in a way to ensure that workers are safe and workers must be provided proper training and fall safety equipment.
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Many homeowners in Los Angeles use the services of domestic workers such as babysitters, nannies, housekeepers, and gardeners. While this homeowner-to-client relationship is often beneficial for both parties, it can lead to complications when and if an accident occurs. It is not always clear if the homeowner is an employer or if the worker is simply a contractor with no recourse for support through workers’ compensation benefits. Read the rest »
In November, the American Association for the Advancement of Science named 347 fellows. But, one of the fellows has lost that post. A UCLA chemist was removed from the list because of his involvement in a fatal laboratory fire that took place on campus.
In the accident, a 23-year-old UCLA staff research associate sustained extensive burns and died 18 days later. The young victim wasn’t wearing a protective lab coat while transferring a chemical compound that ignites when exposed to air. The UCLA chemistry professor was charged with four felonies. He was able to come to an agreement in which he could defer prosecution by teaching chemistry to inner-city students. However, accusations that he willfully violated state labor codes by failing to provide proper safety training and gear has stayed with him, costing him his new fellowship. Read the rest »
A California-based water well services company has been cited after one of their workers was killed and another was seriously injured. The fatal electrocution accident occurred in June 2015 in Santa Maria. Officials say one worker was killed and another was serious injured when a pump hoist made contact with a live overhead power line carrying between 600 to 50,000 volts. In December, California’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited M&W Pumps Inc. for failing to maintain the minimum 10-foot distance requirement around overhead power lines. The company received six violations, including one related to a serious accident. Read the rest »
It has been about six months since same-sex marriage became the law of the land. Yet, there are still legal hoops for same-sex couples to jump through. The Social Security Administration has still not implemented changes regarding benefit eligibility for same-sex spouses. Many are now caught in legal limbo regarding same-sex eligibility and retroactive spousal benefits.
Spousal benefits are an important part of Social Security. So, it is crucial for the SSA to get this right. Difficult cases that must be determined include same-sex married couples that want to seek benefits back to the date they originally filed, even if that date was before their state recognized their marriage. The SSA also has to determine what to do with widowed spouses who were married before the Supreme Court ruling. Read the rest »
The owner/operator of a California theme park has been found at fault for a roller coaster accident that resulted in serious injuries to a ride mechanic last summer. The Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA) cited California’s Great America theme park for the accident that resulted in critical injuries to a 66-year-old mechanic on June 12, 2015.
Officials with OSHA say the amusement park owner/operator failed to have safety protocols in place to ensure that the coaster was shut down while lost articles were being retrieved. Furthermore, the company failed to train workers how to shut down the ride to retrieve lost articles. Read the rest »
California employees are protected by workers’ compensation benefits. Employers are required by law to pay workers’ compensation benefits to any worker injured on the job. What many people don’t know is exactly what their workers’ compensation benefits will cover.
California workers’ compensation insurance provides these basic benefits: Read the rest »
In what has proved to be a complicated case, a California workers’ compensation appeals board determined that the New York Knicks are liable for injuries suffered by one of their former players in California.
The board affirmed an award determining that the Knicks are liable for cumulative trauma suffered by a former player even though some of that injury happened in California and not New York. The court determined the Knicks are partially liable for his cumulative trauma because they were his employer for a portion of his career. Read the rest »