Occupational Claims for Work Injuries
Many are surprised to learn workers’ compensation claims are not necessarily confined to specific events. If the workplace environment causes issues, the law allows for the pursuit occupational claims for work injuries. Similarly, a workers’ compensation claim may exist for harm caused by repetitive motion. The overall term for both these types of injuries is often referred to as occupational disease. The New Jersey statutes define a compensable occupational disease as something that occurs “…out of and in the course of employment, which are due in material degree to causes and conditions which are or were characteristic of or peculiar to a particular trade, occupation, process or place of employment.”
Employees may pursue a claim for occupational exposure for a variety of work-related injuries. For example, the perils of asbestos exposure are well documented. The federal government did initiate actions to regulate this exposure; however, asbestosis is still a concern for those who inhaled the fibers. Asbestosis can be mild or severe and includes lung and breathing issues. The exposure can also cause cancer. Unfortunately, death claims may arise as a result of occupational exposure. Here are some other examples of occupational exposure:
- Chemical exposure: Anytime a worker is exposed to deleterious substances, there is a chance of side effects. Employers are required to produce material safety data sheets for all products used at their worksites.
- Noise exposure: Although employers should provide their workers with appropriate earplugs to lessen noise exposure, many do not. Claims may be made for hearing loss.
- Exposure to dust and debris: Claims may be made for injuries caused by excessive exposure to dust and debris.
These are just the highlights of occupational exposure claims. Individuals who suspect their injuries may be related to their work environment should meet with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to discuss their case.
For many, repetitive motion is an integral part of their job. Secretaries type. Laborers lift and carry heavy equipment. Assembly workers often perform repetitive hand motions. All of these types of jobs create a risk for repetitive motion injuries. These can include carpal tunnel syndrome, bursitis, and back issues. The general term for these types of injuries is repetitive motion disorder.
If you suspect that you or a loved one has an occupational disease claim, it is important to seek legal counsel. It is not unusual for insurance companies to initially deny benefits for these types of claims. The Law Offices of Anthony Carbone has over two decades of experience in workers’ compensation cases. Contact us to set up a complimentary appointment.