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Younger workers may qualify for workers' compensation too

Workplace injuries can happen to anyone regardless of age. Even young people may take a job where there is the potential for an accident that could cause them minor or even serious injury. Fortunately, workers' compensation may be available in some cases so that the young employee is not left to cover the medical expenses.

In fact, according to a study published recently by the Colorado School of Public Health, injuries to youth may be more common in the workplace than many believe. In 2010, 20,000 young workers suffered from an occupational-related injury or illness that caused them to miss work. Tragically, 88 youths under the age of 20 were killed during the course of employment.

The types of injuries that young workers face range from burns at a fast food restaurant to accidents on the family farm. However, any time that a youth has to work with heavy or electrical equipment, there is the risk for injury. Moreover, in a recent survey, one-third of youths said they did not have any health or safety training for their job. A lack of proper training may further increase the risk of injury.

While workers' compensation may not always be available for work done on the family farm, it may nonetheless be available for jobs at a store or at a construction site. Colorado youths who find themselves injured during the course of employment might consider filing the necessary documentation to obtain the benefits. That way, not only may their medical expenses be covered, but the benefits may also cover any lost wages caused by having to miss work.

Source: Examiner.com, "Colorado researcher: stronger laws needed to stop youth labor injuries, deaths," Ken Green, April 10, 2012

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