Workplace Injuries

How Workplace Injuries Impact Families

When you think about workplace injuries, you likely think of how they impact injured workers. However, the consequences of an injury are far-reaching. An injured worker’s family often struggles in the wake of an injury, and it’s important to recognize and understand their losses.

What are your options after a workplace injury? You are likely entitled to workers’ compensation, but that doesn’t mean your company’s insurance provider will make it easy. If you experience issues with getting the compensation you are owed, call Thiry & Caddell at 251-336-3627.


The Emotional and Mental Impact on Families

It’s common for a workplace injury to leave family members mentally and emotionally drained. Their loved one—the injured worker—is likely angry, feeling stagnant while stuck at home recovering, and frustrated with their sudden loss of income. While workers’ comp does offer partial income replacement, it is capped at a weekly maximum that leaves many employees shortchanged. Family members may need to provide significant emotional support to the injured individual, which can take a toll on their own mental health.

Additionally, if there is another working adult in the family, they may suddenly need to work more to make up the gap between their loved one’s regular income and their current weekly payments. Any increase in work can lead to major stress, fatigue, and other issues.


Financial Effects of a Workplace Injury

The financial effects of a workplace injury can leave the entire family struggling. Even with partial income replacement payments each week, injured workers often struggle to cover their share of bills. Remember that the majority of American families live paycheck to paycheck, so a one-third decrease in earnings can have a profound impact on a family’s financial stability.

In some cases, another working adult can pick up the financial slack by working more hours, taking on a second job, or doing gig work. This can lead to the mental and emotional stressors described above. If there is no other adult to contribute or they are unable to earn more, the family often simply has to survive on less. That means spending less on groceries, going out less, and cutting back on activities they enjoy. For some families, it even means skipping bill payments and hoping that they can get caught up when the injured family member goes back to work. These issues can have a detrimental impact on the injured worker’s credit and overall financial stability.


Changes in Family Dynamics

Perhaps the most severe impact caused by a workplace injury is the change in family dynamics. Families that run smoothly with minimal fighting are full of people who fill specific roles. In some families, that means two parents who contribute financially and share the load at home. In others, the dynamic is one partner who works and brings in an income while the other partner handles domestic duties. Some families are run by a single parent who handles both the financial and domestic needs of the family.

No matter what the family dynamic is, you can expect it to change after an injury. The injured worker may suddenly find themselves unable to contribute as they are forced to focus on their recovery. When their partner is thrust into the breadwinner position, it can cause significant stress—and even resentment. If the injured person shares the domestic labor at home, it can force their partner to take on childcare, cleaning, cooking, and other tasks. Again, this can leave the non-injured party with too much on their plate and plenty of resentment.

In most cases, these issues are temporary. The injured worker generally makes a full recovery and is able to return to work and restore the family dynamic. However, the damage done to the family in the meantime can take significant time to repair.


Fight for the Benefits You Deserve with Thiry & Caddell

If you’ve been injured at work and you’re not sure how to get the benefits you are entitled to, rest easy. The team at Thiry & Caddell has represented thousands of workers just like you. Find out how we can help you now. Give us a call at 251-336-3627 or connect with us online.

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