Your Georgia Workers’ Compensation Case: Special Considerations If You Suffered A Chronic Injury Or Illness
When most people picture workplace injuries, they imagine acute afflictions such as broken legs or torn ligaments. Far fewer give proper consideration to the equally painful chronic injuries that appear after years of hard work. Chronic conditions deserve equal attention, as they can cause considerable pain and inconvenience for hardworking employees, leaving them out of the workforce for years. Workers’ compensation addresses wage loss attributed to both acute and chronic injuries.
Repetitive Stress Injuries
The repetitive nature of many positions leaves employees vulnerable to carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, and other cumulative trauma disorders. Repetitive stress injuries are particularly common among factory and office employees, who constitute a growing segment of the American workforce. Research indicates that over sixty percent of workplace injuries can be classified as repetitive stress disorders (RSDs). Job duties that lead to RSDs include:
- Keyboard use
- Prolonged gripping of machinery
- Barcode standing in retail environments
- Assembly line work
- Meat packing
Establishing Work-Related Injuries
Unfortunately, because chronic conditions cannot be attributed to a single, verifiable incident, they are much more challenging to prove for compensation purposes. A physician approved by your employer must provide written verification indicating that your job either caused your chronic condition or worsened a pre-existing condition. If your employer’s physician denies the existence of your chronic condition, you may seek an independent medical assessment. With strong legal advocacy, the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation can be convinced to accept independent assessments.
In addition to meeting with an employer-approved physician and an independent medical professional, keep detailed records of your condition and the suffering it causes, as well as your responsibilities in the workplace. Take note whenever your pain worsens. This information can help your attorney prove the link between your job and your chronic condition.
If you have suffered a chronic injury or illness due to your duties in the workplace, contact Smith, Wallis & Scott, LLP. Our team can help you secure the compensation you deserve.