SEEKING WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS FOR OSTEOARTHRITIS CAN BE CHALLENGING. A SKILLED WORKERS’ COMPENSATION LAWYER CAN HELP YOU SEEK THE BENEFITS YOU NEED AND DESERVE.
On-the-job injuries and conditions that can develop because of job-related duties can qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. Osteoarthritis can result from overuse and repetitive movements at work.
Osteoarthritis (OA) is when the cartilage between the bones at joint locations begins to wear down, eventually causing those bones to move and rub together. This can result in stiffness, swelling, and pain. Sometimes, OA can progress to a point where it leads to reduced function, and some affected people are no longer able to work or do other daily tasks. The Centers for Disease Control estimate that approximately 32.5 million adults in the United States suffer symptoms of osteoarthritis.
WHO CAN GET OSTEOARTHRITIS?
Medical professionals have determined several risk factors for developing OA. These include:
- Age – 50 percent of sufferers are over the age of 65.
- Gender – Women are at higher risk of developing osteoarthritis than men; however, men tend to develop OA more than women before the age of 45.
- Weight – Overweight individuals are more likely to suffer from OA due to the added stress on joints.
- Genetics – Like many other conditions, there is a hereditary component with OA.
- Overuse – Repetitive motions can lead to an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis. Consequently, some occupations may cause or contribute to OA.
Symptoms of osteoarthritis tend to worsen over time, and while they can be managed, joint damage cannot be reversed.
CAN YOU CLAIM OSTEOARTHRITIS WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BENEFITS?
While most people think of workers’ compensation in terms of accidents on a job site, workers’ compensation benefits can cover any job-related injury or illness. This can include osteoarthritis.
If a work injury, working conditions, or workplace duties have caused, aggravated, or accelerated your OA, you may be entitled to file for workers’ compensation. But proving that workplace conditions or tasks are responsible for your osteoarthritis can be challenging. Your employer or their related insurance company will likely say that your condition was pre-existing or hereditary to try to avoid paying an arthritis workers’ comp claim. This is when having the guidance of an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer can be beneficial.
SUCCEEDING IN AN ARTHRITIS WORKERS’ COMP CLAIM
Because osteoarthritis can be caused by so many other non-job-related factors, employers and their insurance companies routinely deny these claims. To succeed in an arthritis workers’ comp claim, you must be able to prove that your OA was caused or aggravated by your work.
You must have a clinical diagnosis of OA, and your condition must be severe enough to prevent you from working. Your physician should provide you with documented evidence to prove that severity. If your claim gets denied, you still have options. You might be able to file an appeal or a workers’ compensation lawsuit to ensure you get fairly compensated for your condition.
GET LEGAL ASSISTANCE
If you are struggling to get osteoarthritis workers’ compensation, our experienced workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of Craig A. Altman can help. Contact us today to speak to an attorney about your case.