Work Caused My Arthritis to Flare Up. Can I Still File a Workers’ Comp Claim?
If you’ve ever filed a workers’ comp claim, you may already know that the term “pre-existing condition” comes up a lot. Insurance companies are in the business of making money, and it’s their job to find a reason not to pay you the benefits you may be entitled to under the law. One potential tactic is to show that your injuries actually existed before your workplace accident. But what about arthritis? What if work caused your arthritis to “flare up” or get worse? Can you still file a workers’ comp claim, even though this is technically a pre-existing condition? Let’s find out:
Workers Are Suffering From Repetitive Stress Injuries
Repetitive stress injury (RSI) is becoming all too common among workers in New Hampshire and the United States. Arthritis is a type of RSI, and it can seriously affect someone’s quality of life. These injuries are becoming especially common in warehouses, including those owned by Amazon. Whenever a job involves a lot of bending, twisting, and turning, there is a risk of developing serious, potentially disabling arthritis.
Can You Still Get Workers’ Comp?
As long as you can prove that your condition worsened due to your work, or in other words, your work caused a “lighting up” or flare of your symptoms, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. The fact that your arthritis existed before the actual injury does not necessarily disqualify you from this important form of compensation. That being said, proving that your workplace duties worsened your arthritis can be challenging in some cases. This is why it’s important to work alongside an attorney who has experience with workers’ comp claims.
Various workers have successfully appealed denied claims based on the “pre-existing condition” argument. One example came in 1994, when the Supreme Court of New Hampshire Compensation Appeals Board heard the case of a worker at Chevrolet factory. This worker had been tasked with routinely carrying boxes of at least 60 pounds, and she eventually developed serious back and neck issues as a result.
Two out of three independent doctors determined that the injury was not work related. Of particular note was a car accident that occurred thirty years prior, which apparently caused neck and back issues as well. Eventually, the appeal was successful – and the decision was partially reversed/vacated. This shows the benefit of working with a qualified attorney to appeal denied workers’ comp claims.
Where Can I Get Help with My Workers’ Comp Claim in New Hampshire?
If you’ve been searching for a qualified, experienced Manchester workers’ compensation attorney, look no further than the Law Office of Manning Zimmerman & Oliveira PLLC. We know that injuries involving arthritis can get quite complicated, especially if it’s something you’ve been struggling with for quite some time over the years. But with our help, you can strive for the best possible results and pursue the compensation you need and deserve. Book your consultation today, and you can get started with an effective action plan – even if your claim has already been denied.