WORKERS COMP CLAIMS
There are several different types of workers comp claims. You may have claims for permanent disability, temporary disability, supplemental job displacement benefits, workers comp mileage, workers comp medical benefits, workers comp death claims, workers comp back benefits, workers comp medicare set-aside, workers comp psyche claims, workers comp specific injury, workers comp CT (continuous trauma), petition for discrimination, labor code 132a, serious and willful misconduct, and many others.
For the most part, injured workers suffer orthopedic injuries. A great majority of Orange County workers comp cases involve orthopedic injuries. In your typical orthopedic workers comp injury, the worker will suffer a specific injury or continuous trauma orthopedic injury. This means that some part of the workers joints, bones, or tissues get injured at work. Most of the time, these are workers comp back injuries, workers comp knee injuries, and workers comp hand injuries.
TYPES OF INJURIES
A specific injury or specific workers comp injury is one that arises on a specific and distinguishable date and time. For example, a workers lifts a heavy piece of concrete and feels a pain in his back and knee. On that date and time, the workers suffered a specific injury.
Another type of workers comp claim is a continuous trauma. This is a type of injury which occurs over time. For example, a worker who has a work station that is ill suited to her height and weight begins to develop carpal tunnel, neck pain, and back pain over time.
Some workers will have both specific injuries and cumulative traumas. It is very important to find the right type of workers comp doctor to address cumulative trauma injuries. Usually physiologists and sports trauma experts who deal with soft tissue and ligamentous injuries are best equipped to address cumulative traumas.
WORKERS COMP PSYCHE CLAIMS
Workers Comp Psyche claims are also very prevelant and necessary. If you have chronic pain, it affects the way you perceive the world around you. Chronic pain changes the way you interact with your family and friends. You become irritable, anti-social, irrational, short tempered and hopeless.
Additionally, many injured workers with serious career ending workers comp injuries become depressed and anxious. Can I ever work again after my workers comp injury? How am I going to survive with my workers comp injury? What is going to happen to my finances due to this workers comp injury? These types of questions will drive the injured workers in the ground. Making them unemployable, multiplying the consequences of their injury, and cause irreperable harm.
However, with the right doctor, treatment, counseling, and support, the injured worker can learn to cope with their injury. Moreover, there naturally should be a claim for psychological injury in the workers comp case.
You should be aware of certain limits by the Legislature to workers comp psyche claims. First, for current claims, you must be employed for 6 months or more. This does not necessarily mean continuously. However, if you are not employed for 6 months, you still could have a workers comp psyche claim if your injury was unexpected (spontaneous) and extraordinary. Generally, this means that your injury was uncommon for your occupation and occured unexpectedly. However, there are several cases that deal with this issue. You should consult with a orange county workers comp attorney for further information. Lastly, you still could be eligible to receive psyche treatment, although, you may not receive any permanent disability for your injury.
WORKERS COMP DEATH CLAIMS
What happens when a worker dies at his work place? What happens when an injured worker commits suicide? This is the most tragic type of work comp injury. Generally, the workers comp statute of limitations for a death claim is 240 weeks from the work injury. This is approximately 4.6 years from the date of injury. This limitations period can be different for certain types of injuries including cancers.
Also, the statute of limitations for workers comp death claims is for the benefits of workers comp dependents. Sometimes, the dependent will not know to bring a workers comp death claim for a workers comp injury until many years after the initial work injury. In this scenario, work comp death claim might still proceed.
For all workers comp death claims, you need to prove the work injury caused the death (or the death is the workers comp injury). Then, you need to prove dependency. There are two types of benefits in death claims. One is accrued workers comp benefits. The other is dependency benefits, or money for those the injured worker provided for. Also, you might be entitled to a workers comp burial expense.
WORKERS COMP POST-TERMINATION CLAIMS
I was fired, but I had a workers comp injury before I was fired. Employees are sometimes afraid to claim a work comp injury because they think it will upset their employer. They will work in pain, fighting their difficulties, because they dont want to harm their job and generally care about the company they work for. Then, they are fired. They might have alleged an injury before the termination, or realized it after.
Most attorneys will not take the case in this scenario. However, you should be aware that you might still have a valid workers comp claim. If your workers comp injury arose prior to the termination, and you are still within the workers comp statute of limitations period, you will still be able to bring your claim. It is wise to allege a continuous trauma injury claim, if you have one, in this scenario.