Will Workers' Compensation Pay For Your Work-Related Heart Attack?
When most people think about workplace accidents, injuries such as back pain and broken bones usually come to mind. However, injuries, such as a heart attack, can also occur as the result of a work-related injury. Whether or not you can receive compensation because of a heart attack depends on several factors though. If you suffered a heart attack and believe it was related to work, here is what you need to know.
What Do You Have to Prove?
To determine if you are eligible to receive workers' compensation for any injury, you have to prove that it was work-related. Heart attacks are more challenging to prove than a physical injury that results from an accident, such as a fall.
In order to qualify for workers' compensation after a heart attack, you will have to show that your work conditions led to your injury. For instance, you could argue that your work schedule was so brutal, that it led to a significant amount of stress on your physical and emotional well-being, which caused a heart attack.
It is important to note that your employer's insurance company will likely deny your claim if it is able to prove that other factors could have led to your heart attack. The insurance company will go through your medical history to look for pre-existing conditions, such as high blood pressure, that could have possibly led to your injury.
The insurance company will even delve into your personal life to look for situations that could have led to stress. For instance, if you recently suffered the loss of a loved one, the insurance company could point to that loss as the catalyst for your heart attack.
What Can You Do?
If you believe that your work is the cause of your heart attack, file a workers' compensation claim with the human resources department. Time is limited, so file your claim as soon as possible. The statute of limitations for filing a claim could provide only a small window and if you do not file in time, you could be left without options.
When you file your claim, do not sign a release authorizing the insurance company to obtain your medical records. Allow your workers' compensation attorney to review the release before signing. If you sign now, the insurance company will not look just at your recent medical history. An adjuster will review years worth of your records to look for a reason not to pay your claim.
A workers' compensation attorney should be consulted with early in the process due to the complex nature of your case. Contact a firm like Thompson Legal Services to learn more.