Workers’ compensation is intended to help injured workers pay for their medical care. It also provides workers with replacement wages while they’re recovering from their injuries. Normally, workers comp doesn’t cover job-related stress.
However, there are times when your Spring Hill workers comp lawyer can get you benefits for severe stress and anxiety because of a physical injury. If you have any questions about your own claim, contact us for a free consultation.
Normally, You Must Suffer a Physical Injury to Qualify for Workers Compensation Benefits
While there are different rules for first responders with PTSD, normally, you must be able to show that you suffered a physical injury in order to qualify for workers’ compensation. It is not enough to complain that you’re experiencing extreme stress or anxiety.
One of the reasons for this is that anybody could say that their job has caused them stress and anxiety. Your workers comp attorney will also have difficulty proving when you developed the condition. For all your employer knows, you’ve been suffering from stress and anxiety for years, or even decades.
Some Workers Suffer Stress and Anxiety in Addition to Physical Injuries
Now, there are times when an employee suffers anxiety or depression as a result of their physical injuries. For example, if you were involved in a forklift accident and lost a limb, you’ll surely experience mental anguish.
However, your Spring Hill workers comp attorney still needs to prove that a licensed psychiatrist diagnosed you with a mental psychological and that your workplace accident was the main cause of this condition.
Your Spring Hill Workers Comp Lawyer Must Prove You Meet the Criteria for Benefits
First, your work injury lawyer will need to demonstrate that you meet the basic criteria for workers compensation. For example, if you don’t report your injury within thirty (30) days, you’ll lose your right to receive workers comp benefits.
The same is true if you were using alcohol or drugs at the time of your workplace accident. All employers require their workers to take a drug test immediately after reporting an on-the-job accident. If you fail this test, you won’t receive workers compensation benefits.
What Does Florida Law Say About Collecting Workers Comp for Anxiety or Stress?
Even if your workers comp lawyer is confident that you are, in fact, suffering from anxiety or stress, it’s not enough. According to Florida Statute §440.093(1), workers are not entitled to benefits for stress, fright, or anxiety.
The only way you’ll qualify for benefits is if your workers comp attorney in Spring Hill can demonstrate the following:
- You suffered a physical injury while on the job.
- Your physical injuries caused you to suffer extreme anxiety or stress.
- You’ve been diagnosed by a licensed psychiatrist.
- Your mental anguish was directly caused by your workplace accident.
- Your stress and anxiety are so great, it interferes with your ability to perform your job duties.
Even if your workers comp lawyer can prove these things, there’s no guarantee your claim will be approved. Most claims for mental anguish are denied.
What Does Your Spring Hill Workers Comp Attorney Need to Prove?
It’s worth taking a look at how your workers comp attorney in Spring Hill can get your claim approved based on stress or anxiety. The first thing they’ll need to do is demonstrate that you suffered a physical injury in addition to mental anguish.
They’ll also need to show that a psychiatrist diagnosed you with a mental health condition. This condition must somehow be tied to your workplace accident. They’ll also have to show that your mental anguish is preventing you from doing your job.
For example, imagine that you are a bus driver and were in an accident. Several passengers died and you were also severely injured in the crash. You feel such grief and anxiety over what happened, you cannot get behind the wheel of your commercial vehicle.
What Evidence Can Your Attorney Use to Prove Your Workers Comp Case?
As with any other workers’ compensation case, your Spring Hill workers comp lawyer must submit evidence to prove your case. Some of the evidence they’ll use include the following:
- Copy of your medical records
- Description of the workplace accident
- Witness statements
- Testimony by your psychiatrist and doctors
- Your own statement as to what happened
- Testimony from friends and family as to your anxiety, stress, and depression
- Performance reviews
- Work history and personal history
Since every case is unique, the specific evidence used in your case will depend on the facts. Your workers comp attorney in Spring Hill will make sure they have sufficient evidence to prove you’re entitled to benefits.
Let Us Help You Get the Benefits You Deserve
If you aren’t sure whether your workers comp claim will be approved or if you think your claim was unfairly denied, you should speak with a legal professional. Our Florida workers’ compensation lawyers know insurance companies operate. We can help you get the benefits you deserve.
We offer all new clients a free, initial consultation. This gives you a chance to discuss your claim with someone who knows the law. All you have to do is call our office at (954) 324-COMP or contact us through our website.