Can You Receive Workers’ Compensation for Occupational Illness?
An occupational illness is any illness developed due to a person’s work environment or job-related responsibilities, and is also known as an occupational disease. While there is recovery available when filing for Workers’ Compensation for occupational illness in South Carolina, the link between workplace events or conditions and the resulting illness can be difficult to prove.
It is not uncommon for an employer or Workers’ Compensation insurance provider to argue that a person’s illness is unrelated to their occupation or ineligible for compensation because it could have occurred for any number of other reasons. Trying to gain treatment for and recover from a serious illness is immensely stressful in and of itself; trying to heal while simultaneously fighting to recover the costs of medical treatment and time off work amplifies that stress exponentially.
Not every type of illness is covered by Workers’ Compensation. Mental illnesses, certain heart conditions, and other kinds of illness may be exacerbated by workplace conditions but not eligible for Workers’ Compensation coverage.
However, there are exceptions in which individuals suffering from illnesses not normally covered have been able to recover costs for treatment and recovery, so it’s also important to gain all the facts possible before you decide whether or not to file for Workers’ Compensation for occupational illness.
What Should I Do If I Become Sick Due to Workplace Conditions?
First, be sure to inform your employer of your illness and the circumstances surrounding its development immediately. There are limitations on the amount of time available to individuals to file for Workers’ Compensation. In most cases, you have 90 days from the time you became aware, or should have been aware, that you illness was job-related, so do not delay in beginning the process.
We would also recommend speaking with a legal representative of your choice. A legal representative with experience working with individuals who have become ill as a result of job-related duties or conditions will be able to take a look at the details of your situation, go over your diagnosis, treatment, and other medical information, look over denials if you’ve had a claim denied already, and help you to be fully informed as to what next step is best for you.
Request a Free Workers’ Compensation Consultation in South Carolina.
At Bluestein Attorneys, our Workers’ Compensation team is dedicated to representing the individual rights of injured workers in South Carolina. We are proud to stand alongside our clients and help them recover the costs of medical treatment and time spent off work as a result of their workplace injury or illness.
To request your free Workers’ Compensation consultation, give Bluestein Attorneys a call at (803) 674-8818 or fill out the form.