Malden Workers' Compensation
The Massachusetts workers' compensation system is designed to provide benefits for employees injured or made ill by their jobs. Without these benefits, an employee might be reluctant to take time off or seek medical care, and his or her injury could worsen. By law, a Massachusetts worker can recover benefits even if he or she is partly or fully to blame for an accident. If you are seeking benefits in Malden, you can consult the workers' compensation attorneys at Pulgini & Norton.Workers' Compensation Benefits and Pre-Existing Injuries
Sometimes workers' compensation insurance carriers try to argue that what you identify as a work injury is actually a pre-existing condition. For example, it is not uncommon for a worker to throw out his or her back while lifting heavy objects on the job. The insurer might require the worker to have an independent medical exam. The doctor doing that exam may find degenerative disc disease, leading the insurer to issue a denial or termination of benefits, stating that the worker threw out his or her back due to degenerative disc disease, not a work injury. Similarly, if a worker has a heart attack, the insurer's doctor may point out his or her smoking history.
Pre-existing conditions are any injuries or illnesses that predate a workplace accident. Contrary to popular belief, the Massachusetts Workers' Compensation Law requires an employer to accept the employee as he or she is. Under Massachusetts General Law c. 152 § 1(7A), when work plays a "major" role in exacerbating or aggravating a pre-existing condition such that disability is caused or prolonged or treatment is required, you can potentially receive benefits.
The condition is compensable only to the extent that the work-related part of the injury or illness remains a major contributing cause of the disability or need for treatment. You can show that your injury was exacerbated by showing a need for emergency medical care, loss of consciousness, prolonged disability, restricted work hours, inability to handle your usual duties, or physical limitations that require a job change. A major cause of harm does not need to be a predominant or the primary contributor to the harm.
Common pre-existing conditions are back pain, carpal tunnel, depression, ankle injuries, knee injuries, PTSD, and muscular degenerative disease. Whenever a pre-existing condition combines with a current workplace injury and the job injury is a major cause of harm, you will be entitled to benefits.
Although workers' compensation is frequently associated with injuries, it also covers diseases that arise from exposure to toxic substances. Occupational illnesses are particularly common in manufacturing and construction. Contagious diseases are covered by workers’ compensation if the risk of infection is inherent in the type of employment.Enlist a Malden Attorney after a Workplace Accident
If you suffer a job-related mishap or illness in Malden or the surrounding communities, the knowledgeable workplace accident lawyers at Pulgini & Norton may be able to represent you in a claim for benefits. Call us at 781-843-2200 or contact us via our online form to set up a consultation.