Workers’ compensation is a financial benefit provided to employees who have become injured or ill due to their line of work. This aid may cover the cost of medical bills and lost wages. While it’s often administered after a sudden accident, such as a fall, it can also be given for occupational diseases, which develop over time due to work conditions.
What Are Examples of Occupational Diseases?
Occupational illnesses may result from job conditions that expose employees to hazards. For example, miners can experience lung disease after facing exposure to job site dust and exhaust fumes, which can be associated with long-term respiratory issues, including airway obstructions and chronic bronchitis. Employees who have been exposed to asbestos can also fall ill with serious diseases, including rare and aggressive forms of cancer.
Similarly, permanent injuries that were sustained as a result of long-term exposure to workplace hazards may also fall under the criteria for workers’ compensation benefits. For example, employees who weren’t given proper training or equipment to avoid hearing damage when operating noisy machinery could find themselves facing permanent hearing loss.
Similarly, employees who perform physical labor, like factory workers, may be susceptible to repetitive strain or stress injuries (RSIs), such as carpal tunnel syndrome. These injuries can make daily activities challenging and uncomfortable.
How Can a Lawyer Help You Pursue Compensation?
One of the challenges you will face when trying to receive workers’ compensation benefits is proving that your workplace led to your issue. In some cases, such as black lung caused by coal dust inhalation, the link is obvious and proven fairly easily with the support of your medical records and a description of your job environment.
In other cases, the link may be more difficult to establish. For instance, in the case of RSIs, you’d need to show that performing job-related tasks is what ultimately led to your painful or debilitating injury—not other lifestyle factors, such as participation in sports.
While this is certainly possible, it requires the help of a skilled lawyer who is familiar with workers’ compensation law and can make a strong argument in your favor. These professionals excel at collecting evidence to support their clients' cases and negotiating on their behalf.
If you suspect you have a work-related illness or injury, contact the team at Kidwell & Gallagher in Elko, NV. These professionals understand the challenges associated with persistent health issues caused by work conditions and are committed to securing the best possible outcome for their clients. They are especially well-versed in mining-related illnesses and injuries. Contact their office for a consultation by calling (775) 738-1000. You can also send them a message online.