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Study shows retail is a high risk for workers' compensation

Small businesses often seem like small boats. They are light protection from the stormy seas of business, and people in them can end up feeling very much alone. But small businesses are never alone. They are part of a big system, and there is often as much help and support as there is competition.

Businesses with a small or medium number of employees may find themselves in a tricky position while trying to support the people who work for them. Costs like workers' compensation insurance and labor regulation compliance can take a heavy toll on small operating budgets.

Retail is not as safe as it seems in this regard. A recent study showed that retail is in one of the highest hazard classes among workers' compensation claims. Businesses with large and diverse stocks of products are especially prone to worker injuries and worker claims.

The study also claimed that men are more likely to file claims for workers' compensation. Older and more experienced workers were injured less frequently, but the size of claims for workers' compensation was often higher when injured occurred for older workers.

Longer hours universally raised the rates of claims. The study covered claims, however, not just approved or undisputed claims. The numbers may, therefore, contain claims that were unsubstantiated.

It is a difficult choice to make, but businesses do occasionally need to defend themselves in a claim for workers' compensation that they consider to be untrue. An attorney may be the best ally for small businesses who need to think about defense in workers' compensation issues.

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