The world would be a less healthy, less beautiful place without custodians and other janitorial workers. People in this industry are true professionals at their jobs, working tirelessly so others can stay safe and well. However, janitorial staffers may put themselves at risk to serve everyone else.
Are All Janitors Covered Under Workers’ Compensation?
All employers who hire janitorial personnel must provide their employees with Workers’ Compensation benefits. This is true regardless of if the janitor or cleaner works full-time, part-time, or just once in a while. As long as the janitor is legally an employee, the janitor can make a claim for any injuries that happen while at work.
What Makes the Janitorial Business Risky for Custodians and Cleaning Professionals?
Most people take for granted how physically demanding the cleaning industry can be. Cleaners spend their shifts bending, lifting, and twisting. They may have to reach up high or down low to scour surfaces. At the same time, they often carry buckets and equipment that can weigh quite a lot.
Additionally, janitorial staff frequently come in contact with chemicals. Plenty of cleansers rely on harsh, toxic ingredients that can irritate or burn exposed skin. Fumes from some cleaning solutions can aggravate conditions such as asthma, or lead to other respiratory problems. All in all, janitorial work is demanding on the body, which is why around 50,000 workplace injuries are annually reported by cleaning professionals.
What Types of On-the-Job Injuries are Common Among Janitors?
Owing to their constant movements and exposure to aerosols and chemicals, janitorial staff tend to suffer many of the same types of injuries at work:
- Concussions, head trauma, and broken bones: A slick floor that has not dried after mopping can easily become a slipping hazard.
- Bruises and lacerations: Many janitorial team members work in tight spaces where it can be easy to bump anything from the head to an elbow, leading to bruising.
- Sprains and strains: One of the biggest Workers’ Compensation claim complaints from janitorial workers is muscle, ligament, or tendon sprains and strains. These can end up becoming permanent disabilities, especially without early diagnosis and treatment.
- Respiratory illnesses: When custodial employees inhale aerosol products on a constant basis, they may end up with lung or esophageal problems. In some rare but notable cases, janitorial workers have developed cancers from inhaling asbestos particles while cleaning in unsafe spaces.
- Burns: Chemical burns are not uncommon among janitorial staff. Neither are electrical or heat burns, both of which can come from cleaning equipment or its contents, such as scalding hot water.
How Long can a Janitorial Worker Get Workers’ Compensation?
Every injury case is unique. That means every janitor who submits a Workers’ Compensation claim and receives benefits will be receiving Workers’ Compensation for a personalized amount of time. For instance, a relatively minor workplace injury may end up in a week or two of Workers’ Compensation. On the other hand, a more serious or permanently disabling injury could require a large settlement to make the worker financially whole.
Regardless of how long a worker is covered by Workers’ Compensation benefits, the benefits should cover all medical treatment and care, as well as about two-thirds of any missed wages.
Do All Injured Janitors Receive Workers’ Compensation?
It would be wonderful if every injured janitorial employee received Workers’ Compensation on their first try. Unfortunately, not all Workers’ Compensation claims are approved initially. Some are denied, and for a variety of reasons. Insurance companies are sometimes very creative in their excuses for not covering Workers’ Compensation for janitorial staff.
Consequently, many custodians and cleaning professionals who have been hurt will get help from Workers’ Compensation lawyers. Workers’ Compensation lawyers and firms understand how to negotiate with insurance providers. They also are better equipped to take Workers’ Compensation claims cases to trial, if necessary. This allows the injured janitorial worker to concentrate on healing instead of gathering evidence or presenting a case.
West Chester Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Wusinich, Sweeney & Ryan, LLC Aim to Help Injured Cleaning Staff Members
If you were injured at work and had your Workers’ Compensation claim denied, the West Chester Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Wusinich, Sweeney & Ryan, LLC are ready to assist. We will focus all our efforts toward getting you the compensation for which you are entitled. Contact us online or call us at 610-594-1600 for a free consultation today. We are located in Exton, Pennsylvania, and we serve residents of Downingtown, West Chester, Exton, Coatesville, Phoenixville, Malvern, Lyndell, Wagontown, Uwchlan Township, Parkesburg, Chester Springs, Lancaster County, Reading, and Morgantown.