How Companies Are Transforming The Workplace Dining Experience

There was a time when corporations weren’t horribly concerned about what was on the menu at their employee cafeterias. Those workers who weren’t brown bagging it from home were lucky to get a hot meal served at work. More often than not, they were fed from company leased vending machines.

But the “foodie” movement of the last decade that has affected how meals are served everywhere from restaurants to public schools has at last come to the business world.

Research has shown that businesses that provide filling, nutritious, appealing meals to workers are more likely to have productive and focused ones. And the disappearance of employee automats aren’t the only in house dining changes employers are making these days. Read on to learn of new changes impacting corporate food services.

1. Employee Expectations Are Greater

The “foodie” movement is no longer a novelty. One no longer needs to be a nutritionist to be aware of calories and the risks and benefits of certain kinds of food. The popularity of cooking television programs, classes, and books means that people are far more knowledgeable about how food is prepared and where it came from. This means that corporate food services need to offer workers not only more healthy eating options, but more ethnic and cultural choices as well.

2. Micro Meals

Research indicates that it’s healthier to eat many small meals throughout the day as opposed to three larger ones. Combine this trend with the on the go habits of many workers, and changes are being seen to dining facilities themselves. These areas are becoming smaller and more informal. The fare served at them seems to be more along the lines of snacks. But don’t expect soda and potato chips. Options include organic juices and teas, healthy salads, soups, and granola.

3. Eating Healthy

You are what you eat, and employers have been taking this saying very seriously over the last decade. As a result, many corporations have instituted “wellness programs” that focus on exercise and diet. These programs have proved very successful, with many companies reporting a near 80 percent employee compliance rate. In many cases, corporations are now hiring staff nutritionists in addition to offering healthy dining choices.

4. Knowing Where That Food Is Coming From

Restaurants are doing it. So are schools. And households are increasingly taking long looks at where their groceries are coming from and how they are produced. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that many businesses have adopted “responsible and sustainable food” policies for their own dining facilities. These include:

  • providing food histories to employees
  • responsible reuse and disposal of leftovers
  • investing in projects like community gardens

5. If You Build It, They Would Come

Surveyed employees have indicated that they would use a new or upgraded dining facility if their corporation offered one. Employees who have utilized dining facilities made available through employers report more chances to professionally collaborate, and companies experience greater overall workplace morale. As a result, employers are making increasing dining facility investments including better food, new furnishings, and even WiFi.

One additional trend as a result of these other trends is the increasing use of offsite food services. Flexible, trendy, and often cheaper than in house food services, the use of these businesses is expected to increase over time. This is good news for such business owners, as corporations increasingly and appreciatively take another look at that lowly lunchroom.

Article Sources:

http://www.corporatediningservices.com/cafeteria-management/food-services-for-companies.htm

http://www.foodservicedirector.com/research/big-picture/articles/impact-technology-foodservice

https://totalfood.com/technology-improves-organizational-health-healthcare-foodservice-operations/

Meeting Health And Safety Standards As A Business Owner

Those who own and run a company that inhabits an office or retail space and employ a number of staff need to make sure their premises and business practices meet health and safety standards set by local authorities and government bodies so that they steer clear of financial and legal penalties, as well as harm to staff. In order to keep your staff, yourself, and your business safe, owners need to make sure that they meet these standards in the property, or space that they occupy.

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

To ensure that their premises is safe, accessible and meeting the health and safety standards required, a business owner may need to make appropriate changes to the premises, or their daily routine, to guarantee that their company operates in a safe way.

Security and Safety

Businesses should make sure that their premises are both secure and safe so that they can prevent damage to property and injury to staff and customers. Business owner’s whose offices or retails spaces occupy the upper storeys of a building should make sure that their windows are safe and are only able to be partially opened to prevent serious injury from falling, and have suitable locks to help to help deter criminal activities.

Security measures also need to be applied to doors, and businesses that possess valuable items may want to make use of pin entry system as a precautionary measure. A business needs to also consider how they would evacuate a property and therefore management need to adhere to a building’s fire evacuation procedure, or create one of their own that will allow customers and staff to exit safely should an incident occur.

Access for All

Businesses in any industry need to make sure that their premises are accessible to all. In the UK, businesses need to comply with The Equality Act 2010 and make appropriate changes that allow for those with disabilities to easily enter and use the property and
space. Installing ramps and automatic doors will help those less able gain access to the premises.

Regulate Breaks

When employing individuals, businesses should adhere to the legal requirements in regards to regular breaks and working hours. Anyone who is over 18 and works more than six hours a day or shift is legally entitled to a 20 minute break, but businesses whose employees work in manual labour or spend their day using a computer may want to provide longer, or more regular breaks to avoid reduction of productivity and health issues.

Clean Work Space

The area in which your business operates should be kept to a high standard of cleanliness so as to avoid illness, contamination, and pests. An unclean premises can lead to serious problems in regards to employee performance, customer satisfaction, and even building structure if neglected for an extensive period of time. All of these problems can leave a business failing and unable to make a profit. By ensuring that your workplace is regularly cleaned and tidied by a professional office cleaner, your business can avoid any financial and legal problems that may arise from an unkempt office space and ensure that daily running and productivity is maintained at a high level.

Trained First Aider

Having a trained First Aider who is employed by your business means that should any incidents occur that require medical assistance, there is instant help available. Businesses will want to provide First Aid training courses for a select amount of their employees so that accidents and incidents that happen in the workplace can be quickly taken care of and assessed as to whether further medical assistance is needed.


About the Author: Beth Stubbings thinks that it is important for all businesses to be conscious of health and safety not only because they need to meet legal requirements, but also because of the effect it has on profits and staff productivity. She would recommend Bristol Cleaners to companies that require an office cleaning service for their business.

Cheated By The Fine Print? Contractors And Worker’s Comp

Independent contractors are eligible to file for workers’ compensation if they have their own workers’ compensation insurance or if they were hired to do a job by a company that provides these benefits.Landscapers, skilled tradespeople, painters, construction and domestic workers, and other types of independent contractors are deceived into believing that they are not entitled to workers’ compensation because they are not regular employees of a company. However, they are entitled to workers’ compensation in certain instances. 

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

Companies who hire uninsured independent contractors to do a job must provide workers’ compensation insurance for them and anyone else the independent contractor hires to work on the job. So, independent contractors are entitled to workers’ compensation just like a company’s regular employees.

According to Stokes & Kopitsky, “Even if you work for a subcontractor who claims he is not responsible for providing
workers’ compensation, an experienced premises liability lawyer can help you find a general contractor or union that is. Independent contractors may have a personal injury claim for negligence that is not barred by workers’ compensation law.”

Independent Contractor or Employee?

Independent contractors differ from employees in the sense that they work for themselves whereas an employee works for a company. Independent contractors determine their own work hours, have their own tools or materials, get paid by the job, and pay their own local, state and federal taxes. Independent contractors are not covered by certain labor and employee laws. To cover themselves if they are injured on the job, independent contractors should purchase their own liability insurance and a workers’ compensation insurance policy.

Employees, on the other hand, earn wages and are obligated to follow the rules of the company who pay
s them. A company sets employees’ work hours, provides employees with tools and materials to do their job and withholds the local, state and federal taxes from their paychecks. Employees are protected by labor and employment laws and are entitled to workers’ compensation if they are injured on the job.

Misclassification of Employees

A debate has been raging for quite some time now over companies that classify an employee as an independent contractor. Companies save money in misclassifying employees because they are not obligated to withhold income taxes and provide benefits, such as overtime, unemployment insurance and family and medical leave.

The U.S. Labor Department has joined with states to look into this problem and is holding companies liable when they are found to have intentionally misclassified workers. Because the state and federal governments a
re working with the IRS over this issue, companies have been advised to review the status of each employee to make sure they are in compliance with federal and state labor laws.

Providing Benefits for Independent Contractors

Under the federal Fair Play Act, independent contractors carry the status of “employee” of companies who hire them. This is why a company who hires an uninsured independent construction worker to perform a job must provide workers’ compensation benefits.

If you are an independent contractor without workers’ compensation insurance, it would be to your advantage to purchase an insurance policy. However, if you have been told that you are not entitled to workers’ compensation, research federal laws and laws of your state or contact a workers’ compensation lawyer to get clarification before addressing the matter with the company who hired you

About the Author: Domonique Powell is an independent contractor who enjoys sharing information with others.

Is a Company Softball Team A Good Idea?

CGA-BC Softball Team 2011

If most of us are honest with ourselves, we’d much rather be out with our friends having fun than at work. Even when we like our coworkers, it’s preferable to meet outside of the confines of work. While it’s true that coworkers sometimes find time to hang out away from the office, it’s hard to get everyone together at once. Many companies, however, have solved this issue by starting company softball teams. Workers all over the country get a kick out of participating in these “leagues,” but it’s important to remember that, with everything in life, a little bad always comes with the good.

Benefits of Company Softball Leagues

1) Morale  Some benefits of hosting or being involved in a company softball league are rather obvious. Most people would automatically, and correctly, assume that this practice can increase worker morale. Additionally, a great deal of good publicity can come when the surrounding public recognizes that the company is engaged in enjoyable events. Honestly, who wouldn’t want to frequent an organization that takes the time in life to have fun?

2) Networking  There are, however, a few lesser known benefits that those involved in a softball league can gain. For instance, these gatherings are a great way for employees to meet others to whom they’ve yet to be introduced. Knowing more people in the company is a quick way to get called on for special projects and even potential promotions.

3) Teamwork  Additionally, the company will also benefit because the games will strengthen the relationships between workers and increase their ability to work together. This is really a priceless benefit when it comes to team and worker productivity. Some of the benefits for the employees, however, are even more important than they could imagine.

4) Performer Rewards  Employees who choose to participate will also see benefits if the company ever falls onto difficult times. If employers have to choose a few specific people to let go, they’re much less likely to lay off those who actively made an effort to be part of the company’s social network.

Disadvantages of Company Softball Leagues

1) Behavior Issues  Sadly, there are going to be some disadvantages related to company softball leagues, but most of these issues are related to mistakes and outright misbehavior by those in attendance. Bad sportsmanship, for instance, can ruin the entire atmosphere of the day and turn a fun event into a serious issue. Even worse, if the general public sees an employee act out of line, it will reflect badly on the entire company.

2) Injuries  It’s also a problem when employees become injured during these games. A bit of unfair play or a simple misstep on the field can lead to a serious injury. This is bad for the employee, but it can also be detrimental for the company. Asking a Calabasas or a Charlotte personal injury attorney, you’ll find that laws governing work-related injuries not really “work-related” are complex, and this can lead to serious legal issues for the employer and their injured worker.

3) Compensation Disputes The bigger problem for an employee will arise after they’re injured at the game. They are often entitled to one form of compensation or another, but considering the fact that the injury didn’t actually happen during the course of one’s work duties, it’s likely that an employer will want to avoid paying extensive benefits. This makes it likely that an injured worker will want to get an injury attorney.

It’s a great thing for coworkers to come together and enjoy each other through a bit of outside-of-work competition. Even with the potential hazards of hosting a company softball team, the act itself carries numerous benefits which usually outweigh the potential risks. It’s simply important to have a few ground rules laid out, including sportsmanship and safety issues, to ensure that a company softball game is an enjoyable success.

A recreational athlete, Ann Bailey posts these notes to encourage company team sports, for benefit to both the business and the employee. Working to protect the rights of clients in injury cases, the Charlotte personal injury attorney group, Auger & Auger Attorneys at Law, advises both business owners and workers in all aspects of resolving compensation issues in company sports incidents.

Team Building Motorcycle Trips: How to Plan Ahead

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There are multiple team building exercises that a small business staff can utilize to become a tighter unit, but going on a motorcycle trip is one of the most effective. After all, most people love going on an adventure, and the positive feelings that they develop while they are riding a bike will become associated with all of their co-workers. Additionally, this is a great way to get everyone out of the office so that they can get away from the stress and begin looking at each other as unique individuals.

What is the Best Way to Plan the Trip?

It is easy to plan a group outing by utilizing one of the many online motorcycle trip planners. These comprehensive websites enable you to select the state of your choice so that you can see all of the best options in your targeted area. For example, if you want to take a motorcycle trip in Florida, you will find 33 different routes throughout the state. However, before you begin looking through routes, you should determine how long you want the trip to be. Florida’s routes range from just a couple of miles to loops that will take several days, so it should be easy to find exactly what you are looking for.

How can We Keep Everyone Safe?

Business owners often worry about liability issues, and this might make the idea of going on a motorcycle trip seem intimidating. Instead of letting this get in the way, you should simply take steps to protect the company and each employee. The first step would be to get everyone to sign an agreement that they cannot sue the company if something happens to them during the trip. You can discuss your state’s local laws with a motorcycle accident attorney West Palm Beach to Fort Walton Beach based to ensure that everyone remains compliant. Aside from that, you should make it mandatory for everyone to wear a helmet.

What Should We do if an Accident Happens?

If one or more of the motorcycle riders are involved in an accident, it is important for the entire group to pull over in a safe location. However, if you are on the freeway, it is not a good idea for everyone to stop on the side of the road. Therefore, you should agree in advance that everyone will get off at the next exit and pull into a parking lot until the situation has been resolved. Meanwhile, the supervisor of the group should contact the police immediately, and it is important to write notes about the accident in case someone ends up in court.

Should We Call an Attorney?

If anyone is injured as a result of the accident, it is definitely a good idea to contact a motorcycle injury attorney. This is especially important if the responsible party is not a member of your group. After all, it can be very expensive to pay for the necessary medical assistance, and the injured person’s insurance may not cover everything.

Going on a motorcycle trip with your small business team is a good way to encourage teamwork because it will give everyone a chance to get to know each other outside of the office. As long as you take the proper precautions to keep everyone safe, your group should return from the outing refreshed and with a stronger bond.

As an event planner for a small non-profit business, Ann Bailey offers these tips for a unique road trip and business team building experience. Keeping riders safe, and defending their rights if injured, the Steinger, Iscoe & Green motorcycle accident attorney West Palm Beach based group represents all manner of injury claims for motorcycle enthusiasts in Florida.

Alcohol Addiction on the Job: Is the Company Liable for a DUI?

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For both practical and legal reasons, employers cannot control the actions of an employee when the employee is off the clock. Employers may proscribe certain behaviors such as drug usage or speech that reflects poorly on the company, but employers can only react to wrongful conduct after it has occurred. Such is the case with an employee who is charged with driving under the influence. This unexpected development can be unpleasant for both the employer and the employee.

Alcohol Addiction and the Law

While an employer’s first reaction to an employee who is intoxicated at work is usually to terminate the employee, employees have some rights under the law. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, employers may not discriminate against employees with certain disabilities if the employee can perform his or her essential job functions with reasonable accommodations made for the disability. If there is a legitimate business purpose to exclude employees with a certain disability, employers may do so; for example, a trucking company looking for drivers may reasonably decline to hire the visually impaired.

The Americans with Disabilities Act applies to a wide array of disabilities, including alcohol addiction. If an alcoholic can perform the essential duties for which he or she was hired without the disability affecting his or her performance, the employer may not make hiring or termination decisions based upon that disability. However, if the disability affects the employee’s work and cannot be reasonably accommodated, the employee may be terminated.

Driving Under the Influence and the Five-Minute Meeting

An employer will almost certainly terminate an employee who is arrested for driving under the influence while on the job. The primary reason for this is liability. Employers are vicariously liable to third parties for the actions of their employees assuming that the employee was acting within the course and scope of his or her employment when he or she committed the tortious act. Intoxicated motorists are a hazard and a lawsuit waiting to happen for the employer.

Additionally, an employee who is convicted for driving under the influence will be unavailable to perform the essential duties of his or her job. While it’s true that, as offered by The Wilson Law Firm, “There are many possible defenses to a drunk driving charge,” in Virginia, persons convicted of driving under the influence face a license suspension for up to one year. If an employee is driving while acting within the course and scope of his or her employment, it is likely that the employee is involved in an occupation in which driving is an essential duty. In such a case, the employee may be released from his or her employment.

Assisting an Employee with a Legal Defense

Mounting a legal defense to a charge of driving under the influence can be expensive for the employee, and most employees should expect no assistance. Very few employers would even consider contributing to the legal defense of an employee charged with driving under the influence while on the job. However, it can happen. If the employee is particularly valuable to the firm and his or her absence from the company would cost the firm significant revenue, an employer may provide assistance to the employee.

If the employer does elect to retain and assist the employee, the employer must proceed carefully. A jury may consider an employer who knowingly allows employees accused of driving under the influence to operate vehicles for him or her to be negligent. If an accident occurs, the employer may be liable for negligence, which can result in an award of punitive damages. Punitive damages can greatly exceed the cost of the injury.

While employers can be liable for injuries to third parties for an employee’s act, the employer will generally owe no duty to the employee to assist him or her if he or she is arrested for driving under the influence. Employers have a strong interest in terminating such employees from employment and the few employers who choose not to will usually reassign the employee to a position in which he or she is not responsible for operating machinery. However, talented and highly trained employees are difficult to come by. Employers with an indispensable employee may consider providing assistance to the employee in the form of legal counsel or funds to pursue an independent legal defense.

Ann Bailey posts this research for employers with workers who are facing a DUI charge, particularly in Virginia. The Wilson Law Firm vigorously represents clients of intoxicated driving charges, aggressively fighting to keep their personal rights intact, within all boundaries of the law.

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/elvissa/339081965/

 

Business Partners: Are You Responsible For Their Ethics?

business

Friction between business partners is common without a clear delineation of duties. Partners frequently have different ideas as to how to run the business and invest capital. Unfortunately, some businessmen seek to enrich their companies by committing fraud and tax violations. Whether an unwitting business partner is liable for that malfeasance depends upon the circumstances surrounding the people involved, the act, and even the company itself.

Privately-Held Companies and the Mens Rea

A wide array of federal crimes, including tax evasion and false claims made under the False Claims Act, require a certain level of intent to commit the act or knowledge that they were committing the act. Mens rea means “guilty mind” in Latin and is used to denote intent leading to culpability. Strict liability offenses do not require a mens rea, as intent is not required.

This means that individuals are generally not personally liable for the actions of their business partners, as the intent to commit the offense lies with the partner. Such actions can harm the company by resulting in regulatory backlash such as hefty fines. Since many business owners have not only an income interest but have also personally invested in the business, this can be painful to the partner. However, direct regulatory action against the innocent victim is unlikely.

Public Companies and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act

The matter becomes considerably more complicated if the company is public. Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 after a series of accounting scandals around the turn of the century, most notoriously involving Enron and WorldCom. Sarbanes-Oxley imposed significant requirements upon publicly traded companies, most of which were aimed at ensuring the integrity of the company’s financial reports.

Among other requirements was the mandate for certain executives to certify the company’s periodic financial reports. The executives must certify that the statement contains no misstatements or omissions of any material facts pertaining to the company and its subsidiaries and fairly represents the financial condition of the company and its condition. Executives must also certify that the company has internal controls and that these controls have been audited in the last 90 days.

This means that if one company’s principal officers is involved in an ongoing fraud against the company and the other officers know about it, they are personally liable if they sign off on the corporate financial statements. Penalties range from a $1,000,000 fine to 10 years imprisonment or both per violation. This ensures that the controlling officers at a company cannot misrepresent their company’s financial position, including tax liability, without incurring personal liability.

Blowing the Whistle

Blowing the whistle on ongoing fraud is a personal decision with benefits and detriments. From a financial standpoint, whistleblowing activities aimed at a company in which one has a controlling interest are likely to reduce the value of that company as the government not only demands compensation but also high punitive damages. On the other hand, whistleblowers are generally entitled to a sizeable portion of the funds received from government actions. Additionally, from an ethical standpoint, fraud and misrepresentation are morally reprehensible activities that cost the taxpayers money.

Individuals interested in blowing the whistle on unlawful activity should contact an experienced false claims attorney such as Goldberg Kohn,Ltd. The whistleblowing process usually starts with a qui tam action served upon the Attorney General of the United States. The government will have the opportunity to pursue the claim itself or reject the claim, in which case the plaintiff may pursue it privately. In either case, the plaintiff is entitled to a percentage of the recovery.

No matter the source, federal investigations targeted at a company in which you own a sizeable stake are not fun. A prolonged investigation will take time and if the fraud is big enough, the ensuing regulatory action, lawsuits, and negative publicity against the company can destroy it. However, by failing to take action, executives who mistakenly went into business with a criminal condone such conduct. When a source of liability is discovered, the correct course of action is to stop all illegal activity and seek legal counsel immediately. Anyone who fails to do so may find that a lawsuit for a breach of a fiduciary duty is the least of his or her problems.

A former news journalist, Ann Bailey reports on this issue of ethics and consequences for anyone suspecting their partner of underhandedness. Goldberg Kohn,Ltd is an aggressive legal voice of protection for any client choosing to become a whistleblower to seek right from wrong in their business arena.

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dellphotos/8430831912/

 

How to Keep Your Best Employee Focused When Their New Baby Arrives

Best Employee Focus

A major goal of any small business owner is to hire intelligent, hard-working people and keep them around for many years to come. If you run your own business, you already know that attempting to find good employees can be a tiring and frustrating process. People can sometimes seem amazing during the interview, only to begin demonstrating a poor work ethic a few weeks into the job. Other times, major life changes, such as health problems, having a baby or returning to school, can drive your good employees away. If you have a beloved employee that is pregnant, you may want to consider doing some things to help keep her around after the baby is born.

Throw an Excellent Baby Shower

Throwing an office baby shower is a good way to support your employee during her pregnancy. Not only will the effort warm her heart and provide her with numerous gifts that she will need for the baby, but it will also show her that she is a valued member of your team. Just as it can be difficult to find good employees, it can also be difficult to find a good place to work. A baby shower could remind your employee just how special your place of business really is.

Be Understanding and Generous With Time Off

It’s important to understand that your employee is going to need plenty of time off both during her pregnancy and after the baby is born. Allow a good amount of time for pregnancy leave as well as plenty of sick days in case anything unexpected should come up.

Provide a Reasonable Work Load

Being a new mom can be quite distracting. If your employee has just returned to work after having the baby, understand that she may be more tired and spaced out than usual. Therefore, you may want to provide her with a less-demanding workload than she is used to. Start slow and help her ease back into her regular routine by adding a bit more work each week and talking to her about what she’s comfortable with.

Make Room for the Baby at the Office

Finding a babysitter can be difficult, and many new moms don’t feel comfortable leaving their newborn right away. By allowing your employee to bring her baby to work, you’ll be helping her get back into the swing of things without having to suffer the distraction of wondering how her baby is doing while she’s away. Plus, you’ll be making your other employees happy, because who wouldn’t enjoy having an adorable baby around? To help make the new mom comfortable, consider purchasing a sanitary changing table and play yard for babies and placing it in her office. That way, she wont have to waste time taking the baby to a different place to change him or her.

Running a small business is like being the leader of a tribe. When the leader is kind, generous and understanding, the entire group does well. The more love and support you give your employee during this changing time in her life, the more she will appreciate you as a boss and want to continue doing a great job.

Having been a TV reporter with a new baby on the job, Ann Bailey encourages support for any employee coming back to work as a new mom. A clean, modern play yard for babies is a powerful statement of support that business owners can easily provide for seamless continuity for their employees with new family additions.

 

 

Lone Star Liabilities: When The Company Truck Causes an Accident in Texas

Texas Business truck accidents

Business owners that are required to maintain business trucks as part of their company face different liabilities than those with storefronts that only require a client to enter the establishment to make a purchase. The very second that the ignition is started in the truck opens the door to new responsibilities and liabilities. The business owner must take into account that they are responsible for the driver and all of their actions on the road. Additionally, if the driver of their vehicle acts in a manner that causes an accident, the business owner is held liable for any and all damages they cause, even if the driver was not following company policy at the time the event occurred.

Legal Issues A Business Faces With Company Trucks

• Driving Records. You must diligently review the driving records of your company drivers. Drivers that have tickets or convictions off the clock can reflect poorly on your company. Insurance rates can soar if you employ a driver with a personal DUI conviction, and in the event of an accident, their personal driving records will be held against your business.
• Maintenance Issues. You must follow a routine maintenance schedule on your company fleet to ensure the safety of your employees and others. If an accident is caused by equipment failure, you can be held liable for the injuries to your employee as well as others involved in the accident.
• Employee Safety Training. Your company should establish a training program for all company drivers that is on-going. Safety issues relating to driving and operating the vehicle, road condition training, and defensive driving should all be included. As part of this training, you should also include company policies about how long a driver can be behind the wheel each day. Limiting the amount of time a driver can be behind the wheel each day will help avoid accidents and liability issues surrounding drivers that are too tired to operate a vehicle safely.

How A Texas Accident Attorney Can Help

When most people think of an accident attorney, they think of a lawyer that helps the injured party claim compensation. However, an accident attorney can also be very beneficial to business owners in preventing liability issues or handling them if they arise.

An accident attorney can help the business can review company policy for the prevention of accidents and make any recommendations that will decrease liability and stay within compliance of the law. They can also review current insurance policies to determine if the company is covered for all liable events.

If an accident does occur in Texas, hiring one of the accident lawyers in Houston to represent your business in any proceedings is also to your advantage. Experience and expertise in a specific field is always beneficial to a case.

What all business owners should remember is that there is a liability to the employees and the public that comes with business ownership. When you put a company truck on the road, you increase those responsibilities. Taking steps before any accident occurs, such as establishing a safety plan, checking driving records, and consulting with an attorney about liability, is the best way to avoid unnecessary problems if an accident occurs.

A former investigative news writer, Ann Bailey posts these reminders for any business doing truck service through Texas. The Doyle Raizner accident lawyers in Houston know every aspect of liability for trucking accidents and work diligently for their clients in all manner of accident fault issues.

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ptrdpictures/182586320/

 

Most Common Employee Injuries and How to Prevent Them

"Caution Wet Floor"There are certain occupations that automatically bring up visions of accidents and injuries by simply thinking of them. These jobs are often industry specific, and they can range from roofing to highrise building construction. It’s important to know, however, that an individual can be injured in absolutely any type of workplace. This fact becomes quite apparent after considering some of the most common workplace accidents and injuries.

Automobile Accident Injuries

While everyone knows the inherent dangers of traveling on America’s highways, those who drive for a living face this danger on a daily basis.  Sadly, accidents on the open road can lead to broken bones, whiplash, traumatic brain damage and even death. On top of this, personal injury laws usually mean that the driver and their employer will wind up in court in one way or the other.

Avoiding these accidents is imperative. The most important advice anyone can take is to pay attention to what they’re doing. Recent data shows that nearly 20 percent of all auto accidents are caused by distracted driving. By simply putting the phone down and paying attention, employees on the road can minimize their chances of being injured.

Lacerations and Cuts

Cuts and lacerations are a common injury in industries where employees use sharp objects. Luckily, most of these injuries are minor, but on occasion, not wearing protective gear can lead to serious accidents involving these dangerous objects. Whether working with meat slicers, butcher knives or even perforating cutting tools, wearing the appropriate safety gear can prevent otherwise infrequent accidents.

Slips and Falls

Slip and fall accidents are one of the most active areas of personal injury law in the legal system. Oftentimes, when these accidents occur in the workplace, they are covered under workers’ compensation insurance; but certain employees, such as seamen in the shipping industry, actually retain their right to bring personal injury suits against their employers.

In addition, when reckless negligence leads to a workplace accident in any industry, most employees have the right to sue. Between the injury and the possible settlement, both the employer and employee are going to be hurt in this scenario. This is why it’s important to immediately mark and cleanup liquid spills, correct any landscaping problems that present a tripping risk and also ensure that slip-resistant shoes are being worn in slip prone industries (ie. food service).

Sprains and Strains

Sprains and strains can occur easily when a person overexerts themselves. Overexertion is actually the leading cause of workplace related injuries. This means that there should always be proper techniques in place to minimize these risks. Workers who must move large or heavy objects, for instance, should always have help. It’s also important to not try to lift a heavy object that is over one’s head; a person should get on eye level with it, especially if on a ladder, before attempting to lift the object.

Struck by an Object

The Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety compiled some of the most common workplace injuries and accidents, and being struck by objects landed in the top five. This usually occurs when an object falls and strikes a person. This can lead to head, neck and other bodily injuries. Luckily, there are a few ways to minimize these risks as well.

Many industries have an inherent risk of objects falling on people. In these industries, proper safety gear (ie. hardhats) and warning signs should be utilized. A premises liability attorney, such the North Carolina law offices of Powers McCartan, can offer valuable advice about safety issues. It’s important for workers to receive proper safety training to learn how to avoid accidents, such as not walking under ladders, keeping a clean work site and, in certain industries, properly securing loads before they’re moved.

The simple truth is that anyone involved in any industry can be injured on the job. These injuries can lead to high medical bills, increased insurance rates, personal injury lawsuits and lost productivity. Only responding to these incidents in reactionary terms is a huge problem in every industry that can make the occurrence of the aforementioned consequences more likely. When proper safety measures are adhered to however, plenty of heartaches can be prevented for both the worker and the employer.

A former news writer, Ann Bailey encourages small business owners to be aware of these top employee injury areas. The law offices of Powers McCartan are experienced in all types of employee injury cases, and have valuable information for any small business in North Carolina wanting to avoid potential employee safety hazards.

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