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Older workers suffer more severe injuries than younger workers

New Jersey employees may be interested to learn that the number of older workers who remain on the job has been increasing over the last few years. While older workers bring experience into the workplace, they also increase the risk of injuries and fatalities that can occur.

According to an economist working with the Bureau of Labor Statistics Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections, approximately 25 percent of the nation's workers were expected to be at or over the age of 55 by 2022. The increase in age is partly the result of the baby boomers as they tend to work longer than earlier generations. The economic downturn and the change in employee benefits also have played a part in the increase in older workers.

Studies have shown that workers over the age of 65 are less likely to be injured on the job overall. The reports suggest that this is because older workers have the knowledge or experience to avoid certain risks and may be more likely to speak up if there are certain risks involved. However, older workers are more likely to slip, fall or trip. An older worker who does suffer an injury is likely to take longer to recover from the injury than a younger worker. This is usually because any injuries that are suffered by an older worker are more likely to be more severe.

When a worker is injured in a workplace accident, the employer's workers' compensation coverage may be available to provide benefits that would include medical care and treatment. In some cases, however, the claim may be denied or disputed by the employer or its insurer. In such an event, an attorney can often provide assistance to the injured party at a subsequent appeals hearing.

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