When many people think about workers’ compensation claims, they think of an injury caused by a sudden and unexpected workplace accident. While incidents such as slip and falls and vehicle accidents certainly contribute to their fair share of workers’ compensation claims, occupational illness that develop over the course of months or years also result in a significant number of claims as well.
Occupational illness can cause significant pain and often interfere with a person’s ability to engage in everyday tasks. Furthermore, these illnesses are often long-term issues that require years of medical treatment and management. For this reason, it is extremely important to contact a skilled workers’ compensation attorney as soon as you can if you believe you have developed an illness related to your work environment.
Examples of Occupational Illnesses
The occupational illnesses for which a worker may be at risk are highly dependent on their job and work environment – for example, a coal miner is much more likely to develop work-related respiratory problems than a receptionist, who is likely at a much greater risk of carpal tunnel syndrome. Below are some of the more common occupational illnesses that result in workers’ compensation benefits.
- Hearing Loss – Many workers who are subject to loud working environments over the course of years develop work-related hearing loss. Examples of jobs in which hearing loss is a risk include airport workers, musicians, loggers, carpenters, and many construction-related positions.
- Mesothelioma – Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that usually develops as a result of exposure to asbestos. It can require years of medical treatment and often results in a significantly decreased quality of life.
- Musculoskeletal Disorders – Jobs that require strenuous physical labor or repetitive tasks put workers at risk of developing musculoskeletal problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, rotator cuff issues, back problems, and neck pain.
- Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome – Hand-arm vibration syndrome is a condition that typically affects people who have worked with vibrating tools for a significant period of time. It can cause numbness, tingling, muscle weakness, and white fingers.
Do I Need an Attorney to Obtain Benefits?
There are some workers compensation claims that can be handled by victims themselves – but those involving occupational diseases tend to require the assistance of an attorney. This is because these cases often involve significant sums and are more likely to be contested by employers and insurance companies. In addition, it can be difficult to establish causation in cases involving occupational diseases, so it is highly advisable for victims to file a claim with the assistance of a skilled lawyer.
Call the Wilton Law Firm Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
Work-related illnesses can have significant impact on your financial a situation and quality of life. For this reason, it is critical for injured workers to speak with an attorney to learn about their legal options. To schedule a free consultation with one of our New Jersey workers’ compensation attorneys, call the Wilton Law Firm today at 732-275-9555 or send us an email through our online contact form.