Making A Workers’ Compensation Psychological Injury Claim

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The most common type of workers’ compensation claims arise because of a physical injury, but a workers' compensation psychological injury claim may be just as valid. This type of claim is very rare, with only one percent of workers’ compensation cases falling under that description, but that does not mean that you shouldn’t make a claim for your work-related psychological injury. A workers' compensation attorney who is familiar with claims for psychological injuries can help you secure an approval.

What Is a Workers' Compensation Psychological Injury?

Though some are more common than others, this descriptive list of work-related psychological injuries should help get you started with your claim.

Depression

Clinical depression can arise as a result of many work-related factors. For example, if you’ve contracted a work-related injury, you could easily develop depression because of your resulting financial stress or inability to work, or you may feel depressed because of extreme and undue stress from the job. See your doctor about feelings of depression to discuss treatment options. If you have no prior history of depression, your doctor may rule that your depression came about because of work, entitling you to a workers’ compensation claim.

Workplace-Induced Stress

If you feel an inappropriate amount of stress in the workplace, you may be entitled to compensation from your employer. Because this particular form of psychological injury is very difficult to prove in a court of law, many do not attempt to make it even though it is a valid claim. However, keep in mind your rights and know that your chances of winning a workers’ compensation case heighten if your psychological injury has caused a physical injury, such as an ulcer, from the workplace-induced stress.

Workplace Trauma

A common type of psychological injury often results if you have seen or experienced a particularly traumatic event in the workplace. Perhaps you saw a co-worker killed while operating machinery, and you now harbor a debilitating fear of performing regular work. Other examples may include slight PTSD following a work-related accident in which you may or may not have been harmed. Any of these cases may put you in a position to receive repayment.

Properly Defending Your Claims

As you prepare to file your psychological workers’ compensation claim, consider the following pieces of advice:
  • Make sure that any and all doctor’s visits or psychological assessments related to your injury are well documented so that they can serve as evidence for your claims.
  • Before you waste your time and money, be sure that your psychological condition is actually a result of a workplace stressor. If there is evidence stating otherwise, recently instated psychological laws will likely throw out your claim before it reaches court.
  • Hire a workers' compensation attorney. As established previously, psychological court cases are very rare and difficult to win if you do not have the proper legal representation. A good attorney can help you receive the repayment you deserve.

What to Do If Your Claim Is Denied

If your workers' compensation claim for a psychological injury is denied, you may still be able to recover benefits. A workers' comp attorney can help you file an appeal for your work injury claim. Once you've filed an appeal, your attorney will prepare you for your hearing. At your hearing, you can present evidence that backs your psychological injury to a judge for review.

Additional Posts About Workers' Compensation Benefits

Photo of Niko Pothitakis
For the past 15 years Mr. Pothitakis has focused his practice on Workers Compensation and Personal Injury Cases. The firm has two locations, one being in Burlington, Iowa and the other in Keokuk, Iowa. Mr. Pothitakis works with many area unions and employee organizations to provide advice, assistance, and guidance as it relates to employment issues. Mr. Pothitakis provides free consultations to those with legal questions in the firm's areas of practice. In this initial meeting or conference potential clients are provided advice on their need for assistance and how they need to proceed.