Workers Compensation and Chronic Pain: Rights and Benefits in Florida

Not all workplace injuries result from a single accident. Poor ergonomics and repetitive movements can lead to conditions that cause chronic pain. For injured workers, the big dilemma is, how do I benefit from workers comp for chronic pain? The first step is consulting with a Spring Hill workers comp lawyer.

In this article, we will discuss the most important aspects related to proving work-related chronic pain and the benefits you are entitled to receive.

What Work-Related Conditions Cause Chronic Pain?

Many professions involve manual work and repetitive movements. But even office workers who sit down before a desk and work on a computer can develop chronic pain due to poor ergonomics.

The most frequent conditions related to work activities that result in chronic pain are:

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome, affecting the ability to use the hand and causes pain and numbness
  • Slipped disc causing lower back pain
  • Bursitis causing joint pain
  • Complex regional pain syndrome which can appear after a workplace injury, causing disproportionate pain compared to the initial accident

Challenges in Proving that Your Pain is Work-Related

The most common problem workers face when they want to file a claim for workers comp for chronic pain is proving the source of their pain. As you may know, workers compensation covers only accidents which:

  • Happened while you were on the clock (lunch breaks and traveling to and from work are excluded)
  • Occurred in the course of your usual job duties
  • Were not caused by the fact that you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs

Insurance companies dispute even clear-cut situations involving accidents. Thus, proving that your condition was caused during years of wear and tear at the job is even more difficult.

This is why you should consult with a Spring Hill workers comp lawyer to start building a strong case. Before you talk to a lawyer, here is what you should remember to do:

1 Get Your Chronic Pain Diagnosed as Soon as Possible

See your doctor as soon as you start experiencing pain. Through diagnostic tests, the doctor will be able to formulate a likely cause for your condition. Do not forget to specify the type of work you do. Your job duties will tally with the doctor’s observations related to the causes of your chronic pain.

some work activities lead in tine to chronic pain

2. Report Your Condition to the Employer

As soon as you have a clear diagnosis, notify your employer. In most cases, you will be told that you do not have a valid case, but insist on doing everything by the book. Once you report the work-related condition, your employer must provide you with the necessary paperwork to fill in and submit.

3. Document Your Condition

Evidence is essential in a case of workers comp for chronic pain. So make sure that you keep every medical record related to diagnostic tests, treatments and refilling prescriptions. At the same time, it is a good idea to start a journal and write down your symptoms, noting situations when certain activities become difficult to perform.

4. Submit to the Independent Medical Examination

The workers compensation insurer has the right to get a second opinion from an approved doctor. Since this doctor is technically paid by the insurance company, they will probably try to downplay your condition.

However, you must refrain from exaggerating your symptoms. You are faced with an experienced healthcare professional, who can detect signs of faking pain and reduced mobility. Be honest and perform all the physical tests to the best of your abilities.

Types of Benefits You May Receive

Florida workers compensation benefits cover medical care costs for the work-related injuries, replacement wages and disability benefits. The medical care is compensated provided you see only the doctor appointed by the insurance company. If you seek treatment elsewhere, you will pay for it out of your own pocket.

Replacement wages represent 2/3 of your usual weekly wages. As for disability benefits, they are available if you are left with a form of impairment after the workers comp doctor states that you reached maximum medical improvement.

You can also benefit from vocational rehabilitation services, if you need to retrain for a new job.

Consult with an Experienced Spring Hill Workers Comp Lawyer!

If your job duties result in a condition that causes chronic pain, you may have the right to file a workers comp claim. An experienced Spring Hill workers comp lawyer at our firm will guide you through the entire process and negotiate your benefits with the insurance company.

The first step towards getting your benefits is to schedule a free case review with us, so call us at 954-324-COMP!

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