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Archive for the ‘workers’ compensation benefits’ tag

Workers’ Compensation for Mental Illness

October 14th, 2019 at 7:23 pm

mental-illnessIt is recommended to get a physical once a year for healthy adults, but how many times do we check in on our mental health? Mental illnesses can run in the family, but the trauma and stress can also cause mental problems. When we think about cases where workers’ compensation is received, we think of catastrophic physical injuries. However, if a mental condition is developed because of work conditions, it is eligible for workers’ compensation like any other injury or illness.

The difficult part about mental illness and workers’ compensation is proving the illness is work-related. Compensation is much less up to interpretation when someone loses a limb or has otherwise physical markings. It is easy for an insurance company to claim that mental illness has been pre-existing before claimed and that work conditions have nothing to do with it. This is why, like any other work caused illness or injury, it is important to seek medical care right away. If an employee has experienced something traumatic at work, a licensed professional will be able to diagnose the problem and relate it to the workers’ compensation claim.

Mental illness can affect a person’s ability to work. Illnesses that may be covered by workers’ compensation include anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These can either be developed on their own due to witnesses a traumatic event or develop alongside a physical injury caused by an accident. For example, if someone watches their co-workers die during a construction accident, they may be eligible for workers’ compensation if they develop PTSD because of that specific traumatic event. If another worker is injured, and cannot immediately return to work, they may develop anxiety after the accident, and workers’ compensation can be extended to cover the mental illness.

Developing a mental illness from a non-emergency situation will not likely result in being qualified for workers’ compensation benefits. Having a verbally abusive employer can cause anxiety or depression, but unless the disorder can be pinpointed to a time where the employee feared for their life, they are not eligible for compensation.

Contact a Cook County Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Proving that mental illness was developed from trauma experienced at work is an uphill battle. For the best chance of receiving compensation for work-related mental illness, contact an experienced Illinois workers’ compensation attorney. Contact us at 630-574-2288 to arrange a free consultation today.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2430&ChapterID=68

https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/depression

 

Mental Health And Workers’ Compensation for First Responders

January 15th, 2019 at 12:26 pm

Chicago PTSD workers' compensation lawyerPost-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, is often associated with soldiers returning from war, but it is also something that first responders can develop due to traumatic experiences at work. First responders are a broad category of people who work as firefighters, paramedics, police officers, and similar professions. With these jobs, workers are exposed to high levels of stress and trauma that most people are not accustomed to. In some cases, they may not have been personally affected by trauma, but are present for disturbing events, and this can have negative effects on their emotional health, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

What Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

After a person has witnessed or experienced a traumatic event, they may develop a mental health condition in which they struggle to deal with the emotional trauma that is affecting them. Those who suffer from PTSD often experience nightmares, anxiety, and flashbacks to the event. Immediately after a traumatic experience, people may have a hard time adjusting to their regular life, but the onset of PTSD can happen at any time after the incident.

Although first responders’ work can take a mental toll, they may also experience physical harm such as broken bones, burns, gunshot wounds, sprains, and joint injuries. These injuries can also lead to PTSD, and workers’ compensation may be needed for mental health treatment in addition to the treatment for physical injuries.

How to Identify Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Unlike a physical wound, mental health disorders are not always obvious. Sometimes, it takes a loved one to realize something is wrong. Being mindful of your mental health as a first responder may help you realize that you are suffering because of a traumatic experience.

Additional symptoms of PTSD include avoidance, detachment, depression, irritability, guilt, self-destructive actions, and insomnia. However, the symptoms can vary wildly for people diagnosed with PTSD, so it is important to be aware of any emotional issues you may be experiencing.

Getting Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation should cover the costs of treatment for PTSD related to experiences which occurred while on the job. For example, an Illinois firefighter received workers’ compensation benefits after developing PTSD following the death of another firefighter. Although the plaintiff was not in the dangerous house, it was ruled that he did not need to be among the flames to be disturbed by the death of one of his own.

Getting compensated for job-related mental health disorders is often less straightforward than a physical injury. When it comes to certain jobs, it could be argued that experiencing trauma is something a person voluntarily signed up for. However, mental health disorders can affect one’s ability to work safely in stressful conditions, and workers should not only receive the treatment they need, but they should have that treatment covered by worker’s comp benefits.

Contact a Cook County Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Mental health is an essential part of your well-being, and when that is disturbed due to a traumatic event at work, you deserve to be compensated. Get in touch with an experienced Chicago workers’ comp lawyer who will advocate on your behalf to help you receive the benefits you deserve. Call our office at 630-574-2288 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.alcohol.org/professions/first-responders/

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20355967

How Safety Training Programs Can Prevent Workers’ Compensation Claims

April 27th, 2018 at 4:17 pm

DuPage County workers compensation attorneys, safety training program, workers' compensation benefits, workplace injury, workers’ compensation lawIt is your legal right to work in a safe environment. If you work in an environment that is full of hazards, you are likely to suffer from a work-related illness or injury and are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.

Creating a safety training program is one of the most effective ways for employers to create a safe environment for their employees. Unfortunately, safety training programs are not as common as they should be. Let us take a closer look at how these programs can ensure safer work environments and prevent workers’ compensation claims.

What is a Safety Training Program?

A safety training program in the workplace can give employees the skills and knowledge they need to protect workplace facilities and equipment. The information they learn in this type of program can prevent injuries and death while reducing employer costs.

Following the completion of a safety training program, employees should be able to recognize hazards and correct them, avoid incidents that may lead to serious injuries, and understand the safety expectations and best practices of the employer.

The OSHA’s Role in Safety Training Programs

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA requires employers to provide their employees with safety training as soon as they get hired. All training programs must meet the OSHA’s standards which ensure that work is conducted in the safest manner possible. Training programs should also warn employees of any hazards they may be exposed to in the workplace. The OSHA believes that an effective safety training program features these elements:

  •         Hazard identification and prevention;
  •         Training and education;
  •         Employee participation;
  •         Management leadership; and
  •         Evaluation and continuous improvement.

They encourage employees to implement their safety training programs in a classroom setting or one-on-one environment that is more detailed and addresses safety concerns that are related to an employee’s specific position.

Employee Rights

As stated, you have the right to work in a safe environment. In the event you suffer from an injury or illness while on the job, you should file a workers’ compensation claim so that you collect workers’ compensation benefits that can pay for medical bills and lost wages. If your workers’ compensation claim gets denied for any reason, you do have the right to file an appeal.

Contact the DuPage County Workers’ Compensation Attorneys

Workers’ compensation law can be complex. Therefore, if you have been hurt while on the job, you should reach out to our experienced DuPage County workers’ compensation attorneys. We can help you file a claim and make sure that your rights as an employee are protected.

Source:

http://www.nsc.org/learn/Safety-Training/Pages/workplace-training-train-your-employees.aspx

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