Carefully documenting your pain, collecting as much supportive evidence as possible, and teaming up with a lawyer to argue your case and represent your rights is the best way to prove that your chronic pain is related to your work duties. Chronic pain, although subjective and difficult to prove, is undoubtedly real and can be quite disabling.
Causes of Chronic Pain
Chronic pain can be related to dozens of conditions, many of which may be work-related.
Causes of chronic pain can be:
- repetitive movements;
- overuse injuries;
- on-the-job accidents; or
- a combination of these causes.
Many cases of work-related pain can be traced back to some originating factor, such as a slip and fall accident at work that caused damage to a worker’s back.
The American Chronic Pain Association lists nearly 100 conditions that can cause pain, many of which are invisible and difficult to prove:
- pinched nerves;
- herniated discs;
- facet syndrome;
- carpal tunnel syndrome;
- myofascial pain syndrome (MPS);
- stress and post-traumatic stress disorder; and
Proving a Workers’ Comp Case
It’s quite difficult to successfully prove that a pain condition merits workers’ compensation benefits. Employers and their insurance companies don’t want to shell out money for fraudulent claims. And that’s understandable.
It’s important for the entire workers’ compensation system that everyone – employers and workers alike – remain honest and that only true, work-related conditions are compensable. But if you are experiencing debilitating chronic pain that you know is attributed to your job, how do you go about proving it on a claim?
Your lawyer can help you build a strong case by using applicable, convincing evidence, including:
- your pain journal (an excellent form of documentation);
- expert testimonies (for both proving your condition, as well as for explaining how it can be related to your work duties); and
- records of your medical appointments (the more dedicated to diagnosis and treatment you are, as evidenced by frequent visits to doctors and specialists, the more apt the insurance company or courts will be to believe your pain is legitimate).
If Your Claim is Wrongly Denied
If you are the victim of work-related chronic pain, every day can be a struggle. Many people in that predicament just want answers; they want to feel better; they want to move on with their lives. If your condition is such that you are physically incapable of performing your job duties or if the pain is so bad that you require frequent breaks just to deal with the pain, you should be entitled to workers’ compensation.
If you’re unable to work because of your pain, find legal counsel to prove your claim. If the insurance company already wrongly denied your claim, talk to an attorney about taking the case through the proper administrative and legal channels. For legal counsel in or around the Des Moines area, contact Walker, Billingsley & Bair today. We can discuss your claim and provide the legal counsel you need. Call us at (641) 792-3595 today for a free consultation.