Do repetitive work injuries count as work-related injuries in Pennsylvania?
Yes! Whether your injury was sustained suddenly, or from repetitive work activities, it is a work injury so long as 1) you were an employee at the time, 2) it occurred in the course and scope of your employment (ie, while you were working), and 3) your doctor agrees that it was caused by your work activities.
Now, this doesn’t mean that your Employers’ doctors or an IME doctor won’t have another opinion. For example, in carpal tunnel cases, many times the medical experts will have different opinions as to what caused the condition. These claims are frequently denied. Do not let this discourage you! You can, and should, pursue any repetitive work injury. How is this done? Hire an experienced Pennsylvania repetitive work injury lawyer. I am here to help!
If my injury occurred from repetitive work activities, what is the date of my injury? Good question. If you are not working currently, it’s usually the last day of work-since each day of work is considered a new injury under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Law. If you are continuing to work, it’s often the day you gave notice of the injury to your Employer. Sometimes, the date of injury is the day of the diagnosis by a doctor. It’s obviously not as cut and dry as a traumatic work-related injury, but it’s just as valid as a matter of law.
The most common repetitive trauma work injury that I see in Pennsylvania is carpal tunnel syndrome. Some other repetitive work injuries in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation cases are low back injuries from repetitive lifting, or shoulder injuries from repetitive lifting or assembly line work. These are just a few examples.
It is very important for an injured worker in Pennsylvania to describe the specific mechanism of injury– that is, a description of what work activities caused the symptoms. This is a key foundation for the medical expert opinions. Sometimes the doctors will race through the history portion of the examination, so be sure to slow them down to explain and document what you were doing at work which caused your problem.
Repetitive work injury cases in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation cases are not treated any differently regarding the litigation process. You still need to produce a medical expert who opines, within a reasonable degree of medical certaintly, that the work activites caused the diagnoses- or were a substantial contributing factor. In addition, the injured worker wil have to testify about the circumstances surrounding the injury.
If you need a Repetitive Work Injury Lawyer in Philadelphia or Pennsylvania, call one of Pennsylvania’s Best Work Comp Lawyers Michael W. Cardamone 7 days a week at 215-206-9068 to reach him directly or email Michael@cardamonelaw.com for a free analysis of your case.
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