If you are involved in a workplace accident and suffer injuries, you could be eligible for worker's compensation, even if you have a pre-existing condition. A pre-existing condition is an injury, illness, or impairment that an employee suffers from that is unrelated to the accident that happened while they were on the job. However, if an employee is injured on the job, and this aggravates a pre-existing condition, depending on the state’s worker's compensation laws, the employee is likely eligible for worker's compensation benefits.
When is a Pre-Existing Condition Eligible for Coverage Under Workers Compensation?
Worker's compensation provides benefits for employees injured on the job, and requirements vary from state to state. In most states, if an employee has a pre-existing condition and is injured at work, they are eligible for worker's compensation, but the number of benefits that they are awarded might be reduced to account for the pre-existing condition. Worker's compensation fully compensates employees for medical expenses and lost wages that are caused in workplace accidents, but if an employee has a pre-existing condition, coverage only applies to the worsening of the condition’s symptoms.
The process of obtaining worker's compensation can be challenging to navigate without adequate legal knowledge, but it becomes more complicated when it involves a pre-existing condition. Proving that a pre-existing condition was aggravated in a workplace accident, and wasn’t already in that state, requires substantial documentation of the victim’s pre-existing condition from before the accident. Generally, a copy of the employee’s medical records, confirmation from the employee’s treating doctor, and reports from previous employers or coworkers that can attest to the injured employee’s condition will suffice.
Common Pre-Existing Conditions Covered Under Workers Compensation
Workplace accidents are unpredictable. Depending on the severity of a workplace accident, and the status of an employee’s pre-existing condition, if a workplace injury causes worsening of the condition’s symptoms, they could be eligible for worker's compensation. The most commonly covered pre-existing conditions under workers compensation include:
- Repetitive strain and stress injuries, such as back pain and carpal tunnel
- Worsened respiratory issues
- Hearing loss, whether partial or permanent
- Worsened mental or emotional disorders, such as PTSD
It’s essential to keep in mind that acceptable illnesses and injuries for worker's compensation vary from state. While in one state, an employee might be able to recover compensation for PTSD, in others, this condition might not meet the state’s worker's compensation requirements.
Speak with a Workers Compensation Lawyer Today
If you or someone you love suffers from a pre-existing condition and has been injured on the job, you need to consult a lawyer about your situation. Obtaining workers’ compensation benefits for a pre-existing condition requires significant knowledge of your state’s injury and workers’ compensation laws, thorough documentation of your pre-existing condition, and substantial evidence of the accident, which can be difficult to accomplish when recovering from a workplace accident.
Christopher Dixon and the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at the Dixon Injury Firm know what it takes to recover workers’ compensation for your pre-existing condition, and understand the level of respect and support you need, and deserve, during this difficult time.
If you need a lawyer to determine if you are eligible for worker's compensation even though you have a pre-existing condition, don’t hesitate to call (314) 208-2808, or contact the Dixon Injury Firm today to schedule a free consultation. Our Workers Compensation Lawyers are available 24/7 for whatever you need and are dedicated to fighting for the best results for your workers’ compensation case.