7 Great Tips For Preventing Workplace Accidents

While most individual industries are subject to strict safety regulations enforced by government agencies, many accidents in the workplace are the result of human error. Preventing accidents caused by human error is something that is easily overlooked as employers don’t have any legal guidelines to meet.

Many times, employers urge employees to rush work to meet deadlines and this can result in workers not paying close attention to tasks. Meanwhile, employers or managers often just aren’t aware of some of the hazards present in the work environment.

It’s time to make safety your number one priority. Here are 7 top tips for preventing accidents and injuries in the workplace:

1. Regularly Tidy And Clean Workspaces

While some may struggle to see the link between cleanliness and a reduction in accident rates, keeping a workplace tidy can significantly diminish the risk of injury.

An unclean, cluttered working area makes it more difficult for workers to move around safely and exposes them to more hazards. The importance of ensuring computer cables and telephone cords are properly routed through cable channels can not be overstated. Cables are a major tripping hazard.

Regardless of whether the work environment in an office cubicle, reception desk, or manufacturing warehouse, keeping the area and surfaces well-maintained will decrease the risk of accidents. In a recent interview, Attorney Marc. S. Albert explained how simple precautionary practices go a long way when it comes to preventing accidents.

2. Install High-Quality Proper Signage

It’s crucial that employees install hard-wearing, highly-visible signs in key production line areas to remind employees of the need to follow proper safety procedures. 

3. Keep Company Vehicles Maintained

For employees that provide workers with company vehicles, it’s vital that said vehicles undergo regular inspection and maintenance. The cars should be serviced on a routine basis.

While keeping company vans maintained seems obvious, data from Bankrate shows that the cost of accidents caused by lapsed vehicle maintenance procedures exceeds $2 billion annually.

4. Reports All Accidents And Hazards

Many employees don’t release the importance of reporting minor accidents such as work-related shoulder injury or back injury but reporting is important as it can result in changes to prevent any future injuries. Any identified hazards should also be brought to the attention of the management.

5. Offer Proper Training

All employees need to receive proper training for their positions. They should be trained on safety protocols and how to properly operate any equipment they need to use for their work. Just speak with any personal injury attorney, and they’ll tell you how important it is to provide adequate training.

6. Ensure Adequate Equipment

All employees also need to be supplied with any safety equipment necessary for their job, such as gloves, boots, safety harnesses, etc. Employees should never be allowed to carry out work without proper equipment.

7. Don’t Cut Corners

A lot of workplace accidents are the result of workers taking short cuts as opposed to them being ignorant of core safety protocols. Once a worker gets familiar with certain tasks, it’s can be tempting to take shortcuts when under pressure.

An employee, for example, might decide to climb up a storage rack without wearing a safety harness if they only need one item and know that putting on the correct gear takes a lot of time. The truth is that taking the time to put on safety gear no matter how small the task can prevent a life-threatening accident.

If you have any questions at all, we are here for you. Feel free to reach out anytime and speak with one of our attorneys.

5 Things to Avoid During a Divorce

divorce suggestions and tips

Divorce may be the only way out when things get nasty in marriage. People file for divorce following desertion, conviction, separation, insanity, and cruel treatment. Having to bid farewell to a partner who has been part of one’s life is a tough moment. One needs the courage to weather the coming storm. The top five things that divorce attorneys discourage include;

  • False Accusations
  • Issuing Threats
  • Social Media Rants
  • Fighting
  • Ignoring Court Orders

During a divorce, one may lose their cool and choose to offer false accusations. Whether for a good reason or not, lying will jeopardize the result of the case. Attorneys know that the court can detect lies. If the court gets to suspect that you are presenting false accusations, it may investigate specific legal info and find out the truth.

The result is that the jury will not believe any other thing you say, even if it is truthful. While it may seem an excellent trick to report falsely about child abuse during a divorce, the consequences are dire. The judges will not be amused if proved to be false. Instead, you will be limited and even supervised in accessing your children. 

Domineering partners may think that they can issue threats to get things done their way during a divorce. However, the truth if the matter is that it is a foolish move to stage at such a time. The best way to handle a divorce is to leave it in the able hands of the attorneys and judges. Saying things like “You will regret” or “You will suffer” can be used against you in court. 

Most people take their issues online to see what their friends will say. It’s important to note that not all friends on social media are friendly. Some are malicious, and they will use anything to harm you. Your spouse can get a printout of your Facebook posts and present them before the judge. You may be right about how bad your spouse was, but for the sake of peace, you should keep it to yourself. Otherwise, you will get judicial orders that will show that your rights to visitation with your children will be limited. 

Court Rulings

Before the final ruling in court, divorcees may be forced to live together. If you get angry, don’t fight. Fighting under one roof can be catastrophic. It may cause judges to rule in favor of your spouse and let them have full possession of the home. To avoid such losses, lawyers typically advise you to find a way to cool your tempers. Getting moody in the court is not a good idea since it will sabotage the case making you look bad. 

Divorce Suggestions

Regardless of how busy you become during a trial, never ignore court orders. Ignoring court orders will offend the jury. It is a sign of disrespect to the court. Sometimes your spouse refuses to pay their legal fees. Don’t take tricky matters into your own hands by refusing to appear in court. The only way to help your case out is to attend the court.

If you need any help navigating your tricky situation, always feel free to reach out to one of our divorce attorneys for a free consultation.

What to Expect From a CRA Investigation

Just like in the United States there is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), up in Canada, tax returns are governed by a government entity called the Canada Revenue Agency – also known as the CRA.

If you fail to file your taxes, file your taxes late, provide inaccurate information or attempt tax fraud or evasion, the CRA is responsible for investigating, correcting, penalizing or prosecuting the taxpayer.

If you do find yourself at the receiving end of a tax audit by the CRA, there is no need to assume that you are under criminal investigation. 

Receiving notice of a tax audit is vastly different from being placed under a tax criminal investigation.

And, when you do receive a notice of audit, the process of clarifying any confusion is fairly straightforward.

The Difference Between CRA Tax Audits and Tax Criminal Investigations

In Canada, income earning residents are responsible for filing their tax returns correctly and on time. The CRA is responsible for making sure that taxpayers properly and accurate file their taxes every year.

In order to do so, the Canadian Income Tax Act grants the CRA the ability to conduct tax audits. This can include inspecting accounting books, records, documents and even physical businesses and homes.

If the CRA finds a problem with a return, they conduct a tax investigation (or “audit”) to reassess returns as well as issue fines, penalties and interest. 

In extreme cases, a tax criminal investigation can be conducted to determine if a taxpayer should be prosecuted for tax evasion or tax fraud.

There is a legally significant difference between the consequences of tax fines, penalties and interest (which are monetary) and the consequences of tax evasion or tax fraud (which is up to 5 years in jail).

For this reason, tax audits and tax criminal investigations are treated differently based on the Canadian Charter of Rights.

Tax audits focus on determining the accuracy of a tax return whereas investigations are focused on finding criminal activity related to tax evasion.

What to Expect from a CRA Tax Investigation

If you have been selected for a tax investigation by the CRA, there is no need to panic. This simply means that they wish to verify information on your tax return to ensure the return is accurate.

Your income tax return may be selected by the CRA for review randomly or they may have noticed discrepancies between the totals you reports and those submitted from a third-party (such as your employer).

Changes in your financial activities, such as an increase in medical expenses, can also cause the CRA to investigate your return.

Generally, once you submit the information they are looking for, and the confusion is cleared up, the issue is resolved.

However, if you choose not to co-operate, the CRA is likely to go ahead and make adjustments based on the information they have. This could lead to you owing more in taxes.

If you have been notified by the CRA that you are under audit or review, be sure to follow these steps:

1. Read the letter carefully to ensure you know exactly what they are asking for.

2. Submit the requested information.

3. Check for another letter outlining the CRA’s reassessment details.

You then have 30 days to dispute or else the new tax assessment is processed.

Should you disagree with the updated assessment, you can dispute directly with the CRA. If this doesn’t solve the issue, you can file a notice of objection which will go to an appeals officer.

However, if that doesn’t work, you can always plead your case to the Tax Court of Canada where the issue can be further escalated to the Federal Court of Appeal and eventually the Supreme Court. On the other hand, if you need any help in the United States with regards to the IRS, contact us.