Workers’ compensation is an important part of protecting employees but can be confusing and overwhelming to navigate. If you have been injured at work, it is important to understand your rights and the potential benefits.
- Workplace Accident Statistics
- Lowes Worker Hazards
- Lowes Worker Wages
- Lowes Severe Injuries and Fatalities
- Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits Through Your Employer
- Pursuing Third Party Liability Claims Through the Workers’ Compensation Court
- Want to Make Sure You Are Fully Compensated for Your Injuries After an Accident Working at Lowes?
- Contact A Lowes Workers’ Compensation & Injury Law Firm
Failing to file a workers’ compensation claim can mean missing out on crucial financial assistance. Lowes employee workers’ compensation provides comprehensive coverage for lost wages and medical expenses if you are harmed at work.
The experienced personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can help guide you through the process and ensure that you receive the workers’ comp benefits you deserve. Our law firm can also ensure you can promptly pay for all medical expenses related to your work injury.
Contact a Chicago premises liability lawyer at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice and schedule a free consultation. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
The typical Lowes warehouse-style store worker spends their day stocking shelves, unloading truckloads of cargo pallets, cutting lumber, making keys, watering plants in the garden section, gathering carts from the parking lot, cashiering, and answering questions as a customer service rep.
Some workers perform their duties in specialty departments, including the kitchen cabinet section, appliances, gardening, paint department, and contractors’ desk.
Many workers are hired because of their interpersonal skills. Typically, they worked a previous or second job for a contracting firm as a plumber, electrician, carpenter, pain, or other occupation.
The information they provide consumers is invaluable in helping customers purchase all of the materials they will need to complete a home improvement task.
Many of their customers follow a ‘do it yourself approach’ looking for help to complete the whole process.
If you or a family member was harmed while working at Lowes in Illinois, you are likely entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Contact the workers’ compensation attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC for more information and a free review of your legal rights and options.
Workplace Accident Statistics
Statistics revealed by the US Bureau of Labor reveal that home improvement sales associates earned slightly more per hour than workers and other retail sectors.
The average entry-level worker is knowledgeable in building materials or garden equipment will be paid slightly more than $12 per hour and as high as $20 an hour or more in a senior position.
Nearly every position in the Lowes store requires the employee to perform manual labor. Work duties include lifting heavy objects, climbing ladders, moving heavy boxes, making deliveries, unloading and loading tractor-trailers filled with merchandise, and stocking shelves during the day, evening, and night shift.
Lowes Worker Hazards
Over the last two decades, millions of homeowners and small business contractors have shopped in the crowded aisles of their local improvement centers, like Lowes, Ace Hardware, and Home Depot.
The low prices and instant accessibility of many hard-to-find products make shopping at Lowes enticing for those who want to complete a weekend project or contractors needing an extensive list of building materials.
The popularity of Lowes and other improvement centers requires the stores to overstock their shelves and stack additional merchandise on racks above the items for sale.
This task requires forklifts and mechanized lifting jacks to move merchandise through the retail warehouse store during business hours when many customers are busy shopping.
The dangerous scenario of mixing warehouse equipment with consumers in crowded aisles is a deadly combination that has resulted in serious injuries and fatalities over the years.
The supervisor, managers, and corporate office of Lowes have a legal obligation to ensure that everyone remains safe in the retail portion of the store, out on the loading dock, and in the storage areas in the back.
Many accidents happening at Lowes, Ace Hardware, Home Depot, Menards, and other improvement centers result from poor work practices and inattention to safety details necessary to prevent a work injury, chemical exposure, and other serious work-related harm.
According to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), there are significant risk factors for working and shopping in improvement centers, including Lowes. The federal agency in charge of maintaining the health and safety of workers offers recommendations to ensure safety in the job environment.
Some of these recommendations for Lowes to avoid head trauma, joint damage, neck injuries, herniated disc, or other work injury requiring medical care or physical therapy include:
- Personal Ergonomics: Heavy lifting and repetitive motion can cause significant health problems to every Lowes worker. Because of that, supervisors and managers should provide every worker with PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), including gloves and hardhats, and back and waist support belts. OSHA has cited many improvement centers, including Menards, Home Depot, and Lowes, for the failure to provide proper respiratory protection to safeguard the health of their workers. Additionally, the employee should wear steel-toed shoes and comfortable clothing that makes it easier to reach, bend and stretch.
- Warehouse Ergonomics: Nearly every workday, the Lowes employee must lift heavy building materials, remove cargo off delivery trucks, store in the backroom, or stack the shelves.
- Floor Maintenance: Management is responsible for ensuring that the sales floor and storage area in the back of the warehouse remains clean and dry to avoid slip, trip, and fall accidents. Nearly one out of every eight accidents occurring in an improvement center involves slipping and tripping.
- Optimized Shall Stacking Practices: Approximately one out of every five reported fatalities your severe injury that occurs at Lowes, Menard’s, and Home Depot were caused by heavy falling objects that slipped or fell from significant heights above the items for sale on storage racks, requiring medical treatment for all workers injured in these events.
- High Level of Security: At least a few times a week, a local law enforcement officer arrives at Lowes to handle shoplifters caught in the active committing a crime. In addition to hiring loss prevention workers, the improvement center also utilizes surveillance equipment, including cameras, sensors, and alarms to help identify criminal activity.
- Ongoing Safety Training: Ensuring that every worker receives adequate training on minimizing workplace injuries when handling emergencies can minimize the potential for severe injuries, chemical exposure, and avoidable fatalities.
Employees need to remain alert of potential hazards that could cause significant harm, injury, or death to themselves or others.
While it is the responsibility of management to guarantee safety, many retail outlet workers have lost their lives and suffered injuries that could have been prevented had safety procedures and protocols been taught and followed.
Lowes Worker Wages
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics 2016, data concerning the employment statistics of the previous year, 4660 Lowes injured workers were harmed in a workplace accident in the Chicago, Naperville, and Arlington Heights metropolitan areas.
On average, Lowes employees in northeastern Illinois earn $34,030 every year (mean wage), at $16.36 per hour. The wage is significantly higher than the national average. See Chart
Lowes Severe Injuries and Fatalities
Each year, customers and workers at Lowes Center are killed or suffer serious injuries from preventable accidents and violent attacks. Unfortunately, the cases represent a small portion of the serious issues at Lowes and other home improvement stores.
- Case 1: Charlotte, North Carolina: A Carolinian Lowe’s worker died after being crushed by a garage door at the improvement center. The incident occurred in a warehouse area next to the store, away from shoppers. Local EMT responders transported the 35-year-old worker to the Carolinas Medical Center, where the injured worker was pronounced dead less than an hour after the accident occurred.
- Case 2: Lexington, Kentucky: A 61-year-old Lowes worker fell to his death after climbing a 15-foot ladder. The worker fell more than 12 feet before suffering a fatal head injury. EMT responders transported the injured Lowes worker to the local Georgetown Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
- Case 3: Union Township, Pennsylvania: A worker loading appliances in a semi-truck storage trailer from a delivery truck at the Union Township Lowes got caught between both vehicles before suffering crushing injuries to the abdomen. EMT responders transported the injured victim to the local Jameson Hospital emergency room, where he later died. After loading the truck, the truck driver moved the vehicle forward so the doors to the truck could be closed. However, the trucker’s foot slipped off the pedal, causing the truck to drift backward, crushing the worker. The company’s insurance policy made the payment.
- Case 4: Las Vegas, Nevada: A Nevada jury awarded a customer approximately $13 million to settle a lawsuit filed against Lowes after she slipped and fell in a Las Vegas store in July 2013. The plaintiff’s victory is a small reward after she fractured her skull during the incident and permanently lost her ability to smell and sense of taste due to her brain injury. The 38-year-old woman was shopping in the facility’s Garden Center just before slipping on a “slimy, wet substance” that had drained from various planters. The skull fracture resulted in a frontal lobe hemorrhage, chronic headaches, neck pain, and increased depression and anxiety. The insurance company providing coverage for large companies paid the award.
- Case 5: Winnebago County, Illinois: Local law enforcement stated that the 52-year-old Lowes delivery truck driver lied to police about how his coworker died. Investigators concluded that the decedent had been crushed in a truck accident when hit by the vehicle moving in reverse, pinning him between two vehicles. The Lowes trucker has been charged with obstruction of justice.
Every Lowe’s supervisor, management staffer, administrator, property owner, and crew chief must ensure the safety of every worker at Lowes. Any failure to do so could make the employer legally liable for any incident that harmed, injured, or killed a worker, customer, or visitor.
In some incidents, injured workers have taken the initiative to hire personal injury attorneys to represent them in filing Lowes workers’ compensation claims and seeking additional monetary compensation from third parties that might also be responsible for their damages.
Hiring an attorney is often necessary because filing a legitimate claim is often extremely complex based on state laws.
Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits Through Your Employer
When you’re hurt while working at Lowes, you can apply immediately to receive awarded benefits under this worker’s compensation program.
Under the program, Lowes is required to cover your medical expenses and at least two-thirds of your average weekly salary through workers’ compensation benefits.
However, the company is not responsible for any liability claims made against you by third parties or any other related damages.
For example, typically, if a customer was injured in the store after slipping on a wet spot on the floor, Lowe’s insurance company is not responsible for paying out damages.
Since the company will be watching your every move, any suspicious behavior could result in employment termination, followed by an investigation into whether workers’ compensation benefits should still be paid.
Were you terminated before your employer-provided all medical benefits and paid all medical bills owed to you? If so, you can take legal action to resolve your Lowe’s workers’ compensation case.
In some circumstances, their attorneys have advised injured workers to file against third parties that contributed to or caused the employees’ injuries at Lowes. In almost every case, these lawsuits are filed in addition to a workers’ compensation claim instead of as a replacement.
Pursuing Third Party Liability Claims Through the Workers’ Compensation Court
Are you pursuing claims against a third party not covered by the workers’ compensation system?
If so, your attorney can petition Lowes to allow you to step out of the workers’ compensation claim process and file directly in civil court. If they refuse, you can appeal their decision with your state’s workers’ compensation board.
Lowes’ attorneys will defend the company and argue that they should not be required to cover your claim.
Should the board decide in your favor, you can file directly through civil court without returning to work for Lowes. While this is normally a faster process, not all jurisdictions have these courts yet, making it necessary to file in the regular civil court system instead.
Injured workers have also received additional help from their attorneys filing claims against third parties from groups such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).
The OSHA is a federal agency that has the power to investigate companies that violate its standards for workplace safety, while the DOL investigates complaints involving pay disputes with employers.
In some circumstances, filing a complaint can provide closure on an incident while compensating you for damages.
Want to Make Sure You Are Fully Compensated for Your Injuries After an Accident Working at Lowes?
Our law firm helps Lowes employees recover financial compensation through civil lawsuits and the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act. Call Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers today to schedule a free case review and claim consultation.
If you have been injured in a workplace accident, never gamble with your family’s future and financial security.
Our team of legal experts can ensure you receive all available workers’ compensation benefits and possibly through other third parties that might also be responsible for your damages, including medical bills, ongoing medical care, and lost earnings.
Your attorney can ensure that you file all the necessary documentation for your workers’ compensation case on time. Then, our law firm working on your behalf will build a case and negotiate a settlement or take your Lowe’s workers’ compensation claim to trial.
Contact A Lowes Workers’ Compensation & Injury Law Firm
No upfront payments are necessary because our personal injury law firm accepts all wrongful death lawsuits, Lowe’s workers’ compensation claims, and third-party injury cases for compensation through contingency fee agreements.
Are you entitled to workers’ compensation-covered medical benefits and lost wages? Call our law firm today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) for a free case evaluation to discuss maximizing your workers’ compensation claim to pay for your medical care, get back your lost wages, and pay your medical bills.
This arrangement means that legal fees are paid after our attorneys have successfully resolved your compensation case by negotiating an out-of-court settlement on your behalf or by winning your case at trial.
We guarantee if your workers’ compensation attorney from our law office does not win, you do not pay!