Pre-Existing Conditions and Workers’ Comp
If you’re injured while on the job, workers’ compensation can make the process of healing and recovery much easier. These benefits can cover living expenses and some medical expenses while you are recuperating and not earning a normal wage. Unfortunately, these benefits may be denied to people even if they have a legitimate claim to them.
The Indianapolis, IN work injury lawyers of Golitko & Daly would like to consider how pre-existing injuries and medical conditions can affect your workers’ compensation claim. We’ll cover different scenarios below so you can see just how complicated these matters can become.
Pre-Existing Condition Aggravated by a Workplace Injury
In these situations, a person may have a previous injury that has been made worse or re-injured due to an accident or mishap at work. Say that someone suffered a shoulder injury while playing sports in college. Years later, that person suffers an injury to the same shoulder while at their job.
In these cases, insurance companies may claim that the workplace injury is really just an aggravation of the previous injury. Workers’ compensation benefits will be reduced, covering just the worsening of the condition rather than the workplace shoulder injury per se.
Pre-Existing Condition Related to a Previous Workers’ Comp Claim
In physically demanding jobs, it’s possible for employees to suffer repeated injuries to the same part of the body on separate occasions. It’s something that our Indianapolis work injury lawyers have noticed a fair amount in some industrial and manufacturing jobs. If you injure part of your body, you may be more likely to suffer subsequent injuries to that part of the body despite surgery and physical rehabilitation.
As with the previous scenario, workers’ compensation benefits may be reduced by the insurance company as a result of the previous injury. If you are permanently impaired by the injury, your benefits may also be cut based on the amount given for permanent impairment in the previous workers’ compensation claim.
Pre-Existing Condition Unrelated to the Current Injury
Our medical histories can be varied and complex, which means it’s likely that you may suffer from some pre-exisitng medical issue that’s unrelated to a current work injury. An example of this is if you injure your shoulder while on the job but have a previous history of back injuries.
In these scenarios, it’s unlikely that the pre-existing condition will affect your workers’ compensation benefits in any substantial degree.
Why Working with an Attorney Is Crucial
If you have aggravated a previous injury while performing your job duties and are seeking workers’ compensation benefits, it’s advisable to work with an attorney. If your claim has been denied, the work injury attorney can help with the appeals process.
Your workers’ compensation attorney can also help with reduced benefits due to a pre-existing condition. They can help you receive more for your aggravated injury, and ensure that the insurance company gives you fair consideration.
Speak with Our Team of Work Injury Attorneys
For more information about workers’ compensation claims and whether or not you qualify for benefits, be sure to contact our team of work injury lawyers. The team at Golitko & Daly can be reached by phone in Indianapolis at (317) 942-3596.