Workers' Comp For Respiratory Injuries: Issues That Can Challenge Your Claim

Law Blog

From paint fumes to toxic chemicals released during processing, there are so many things that can injure the delicate respiratory system of the human body. Unfortunately, some people who work in specific industries face these risks on an almost daily basis. It is not at all uncommon for an American worker to sustain injuries or damage to their respiratory system due to exposure to some kind of damaging agent in the workplace.

Even more unfortunate, workers' comp claims for respiratory injury can be especially complicated, and the insurance company will use a lot of things to challenge your claim. Take a look at some of the issues you may face as an employee that may lead to the need for seeking an attorney for help. 

1. Respiratory issues can have a combination of root causes. 

Unlike injuries in the workplace that can be straightforward like a malfunctioned machine that caused the direct injury, respiratory injuries may not always be so straightforward. For example, it may be toxic fumes that caused the injury, but other factors may have been at play, such as lack of protective gear, lack of ventilation, or something else. Since respiratory issues can have so many root causes to blame, it makes it easier for an insurance company to try to wiggle out of paying a claimant what they deserve. 

2. You may be blamed if not following company safety protocol. 

Say you slipped off your mask momentarily to speak to an associate. Maybe you stood too close to an outlet point when you should've been standing in another location. It is tiny, seemingly unimportant factors like this that the workers' comp insurer may try to use to disprove the employer's liability. If some wrong move you supposedly made was directly related to your injury, your claim may be denied. No matter how much you are made to feel like the injury is your fault, it is important to speak with a workers' compensation attorney for advice. 

3. Insurance companies will dig into your history. 

It is not uncommon for workers' comp insurance companies to be pretty investigative when they have a claim they do not want to pay. Unfortunately, with claims associated with respiratory issues, this means the company may dig deep into your history as an employee and as a person. For example, if the company finds out that you have been a smoker in the past, they may try to use that information to prove they are not fully liable for your injuries.


16 July 2020