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The True Cost of Workers’ Compensation

It isn’t difficult to find information regarding dangerous occupations, the number of on-the-job injuries occurring each year, and even the cost of workers’ compensation. It can be difficult to find all of the information in one place. We did a bit of research into the true cost of workers’ compensation, and here is some information regarding the costs that you may find as eye-opening as we did.

1. Worker Injuries and Cost

Workers are injured in a variety of ways, but the most common are: Overexertion, fall on same level, fall to lower level, bodily reaction, highway incident, struck by object, compression, struck against object, repetitive motion and assault.

Taken from 2009 statistics, here are the costs, per type of injury per year:

  • Overexertion – $12.75 billion
  • Fall on Same Level – $7.94 billion
  • Fall to Lower Level – $5.35 billion
  • Bodily Reaction – $5.28 billion
  • Struck by Object – $4.64 billion
  • Highway Incident – $2.18 billion
  • Compression – $2.04 billion
  • Struck Against Object – $2.01 billion
  • Repetitive Motion – $1.97 billion
  • Assault – $0.59 billion

2. The Most Dangerous Industries

When it comes to workplaces, some are inherently more dangerous than others. In order by number of accident, these injuries are: air transportation, beverage and tobacco manufacturing, couriers and messengers, building materials dealers, transportation and warehousing, education and health services, manufacturing, natural resources and mining, leisure and hospitality, construction, retail trade, and utilities.

3. Cost to Businesses

Businesses who pay out for injuries incur direct and indirect costs. Examples of direct costs are those paid for legal services, workers’ compensation payments and medical expenses. Indirect costs include those paid for repairs of damaged or faulty equipment, investigating accidents, putting corrective measures into place, lost productivity, and the cost of training replacement workers. According to BOLT, indirect costs may surpass direct costs by 20 times.

In 2009, employer costs were $73.9 billion. Workers compensation benefits paid totaled $58.3 billion, medical benefits totaled $28.9 billion and other cash benefits totaled $29.4 billion. Employers also paid covered wages to the tune of $5.68 billion.

It’s important to remember that if you are hurt at work, your health insurance will not cover your medical expenses. Filing a claim for workers’ compensation is often one of the only ways to ensure that your expenses are covered. If you are hurt at work and need assistance with workers’ compensation in North Carolina, call our office. We will provide you with a free consultation and help you determine your next steps. Call now.

Posted In: Workers' Compensation
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