Every year a whole new batch of workers age up and become ready to enter the workforce in Minnesota. Working in your teenage years is fulfilling, not just because they suddenly have their own hard-earned money to spend however they want, but because a job can teach valuable work skills and other useful life skills such as time management. The employers of teens benefit too by potentially fostering themselves a future full-time employee. However, accidents happen, and they can happen at work to teen workers. When this happens, is a teen entitled to the same worker’s compensation as an adult worker would be?
The answer is a firm yes. As teens often work part-time jobs after school or temporary jobs to fill a few of those endless summer hours, parents may think that their teen, as an underaged part-time worker might not be eligible for worker’s compensation, but it is simply not true. Worker’s compensation covers almost all workers, save for a few select exemptions. Furthermore, as teens often work some occasionally dangerous professions, such as working in restaurants, construction crews, or landscaping, they may be more prone to getting injured due to their lack of work and safety experience.
Filing Worker’s Compensation for Teens
When a teen is injured at their job, the filing process for worker’s compensation works much like it would for an injured adult worker. As a parent, you will want to help your teen find a skilled worker’s compensation lawyer and both you and your lawyer will help them fill out the appropriate paperwork to seek compensation.
As it is unlikely your teen will be injured via repetitive stress or occupational illness injuries that take a long time to develop, it is important to make sure their injuries are covered. If they were in a fall accident or suffered another traumatic injury, they could have damage that could affect them for the rest of their still long working life. In this respect, worker’s compensation can help make sure they are taken care of appropriately.
Preventing Teen Injuries as a Parent
Let’s be honest, you hope your child never has to see how the worker’s compensation system works up close. You want them to be healthy and injury-free during their entire working life. In this respect, parents should take preventative measures in making sure their teen doesn’t get injured.
This prevention starts with talking about their job. Make sure you are familiar with what duties your child is in charge of each day and any equipment they may be using. You should also note any warning signs of a potentially dangerous workplace such as your child being unsupervised, working late hours, or stories of other injured workers.
Teen workers shouldn’t be given dangerous jobs, but it can happen. Whether it is another co-worker being lazy or a supervisor that just doesn’t care about safety, teens can be given pretty dangerous jobs that you would rather them not be doing. It is crucial to make sure that your child knows that they have the right to decline to work in unsafe conditions or doing what they feel is an unsafe task. In truth, it is better for the teen to lose the job then to risk injury because of it.
Do you have a teen that was injured at their job or were you the adult worker in question that got hurt? Contact us today to see what the Law Office of Joshua Borken can do for you. We are dedicated to representing Minnesota’s injured workers to make sure they get the compensation that their injuries deserve, no matter how young or old they are.