An inability to afford retirement has prompted many older Minnesota workers to stay on the job. Longer lifespans have added to the trend as well for people who desire to remain employed. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has identified these two factors as major contributors to the aging of the nation’s workforce. It estimates that people age 65 and older will be the fastest growing segment of employees through 2024. The proportion of workers in the 25-to-54 age group will increase at a much slower rate.
A vice president at an insurance company said that accidents could rise among new employees because companies are investing less time in training the younger workers who will replace more experienced workers. Severe injuries for younger workers translate into payment of disability claims over a longer period of time.
As for older workers, he said that they have a greater risk of injury on the job. Declining health among the population also exacerbates injuries. He noted that about half of workplace injury claims involve people with pre-existing chronic conditions like cancer, diabetes or obesity. The presence of one chronic condition doubles the claim costs for a worker. People with two or more chronic problems have claim costs that are five times higher.
When someone is hurt at work, the injury must be reported to the employer to start the workers’ compensation insurance claim process. An injured worker who cannot get information about benefits from an employer might choose to speak with an attorney. Experienced legal counsel can explain the procedures involved in filing a claim as well as the benefits that might be available.