Can I Receive Workers’ Compensation Benefits for My Occupational Disease?
Ask yourself this simple question: If you won a 100 million dollar lottery at 18 years old, do you think your body would feel the way it does today after years of doing hard work?
Picture it – that lottery winner version of you would have had a life of luxury – personal assistants, homes all over the world, maybe even a personal shopper or three – and never do a single day of physically demanding or dangerous work. Okay, maybe skiing in Switzerland – for a long weekend.
Now your reality – years of hard, dedicated work. Waking up each morning with aches and pains that grow worse each day. Or after years of exposure to toxic fumes, then a diagnosis of asthma. Or worse.
Now, it’s easy to blame age for the health challenges you’re facing today. But do you really think you would be facing those same health challenges if you had won that lottery? Most people I talk to say “no way!”. Yet, you’d be the same age in both scenarios.
California is one of the few States in the entire country that protects its workers if they suffer a “wear and tear” injury, also known as a cumulative trauma. The law provides that if the work duties contributed to your injuries or conditions, the employer must provide medical treatment, wage replacement benefits, and pay permanent injury compensation for the damage the employment caused.
Common types of Cumulative Trauma could include:
– Wrist pain / Carpal Tunnel syndrome
– Heart attack
– High blood pressure
– Neck pain
– Radiating pain into arms or legs
– Premature Death (whether at the job, or off the job)
In my 30 year career, I have seen many other injuries and conditions that are found by the Workers Compensation Judge to be work-related that are not on this list. It is also important to note that the entire injury or condition DOES NOT have to be entirely work-related – all that is required by the law is that work contributed to the worsening of the injury or condition.
While some injuries and conditions have nothing to do with work, it usually takes a qualified and independent physician that understands workers compensation to make the determination what is work-related, and what is not.
We Are Here To Help You
A consultation is free and confidential. Many people I meet with only want to know what their potential rights are – then decide if they want to pursue a cumulative trauma claim. That’s smart – gather the information and figure out what’s best for you.
When you are ready to take a closer look at your circumstances, give us a call at 714-547-5025.
And hey, it’s okay that neither of us won the lottery. I love what I do for a living anyway.
When filing a workers’ compensation claim for a disease, serious illness or debilitating physical ailment that hinders your ability to work, it is best to not go through it alone. You will want to hire a workers’ comp attorney who knows the ropes and will help you every step of the way. From gathering medical information and preparing all the necessary documentation to fight any claim denials or appeals, an experienced lawyer will help you get the best possible results. Contact Thomas F. Martin today for professional legal services and support for your California workers’ compensation case.