How Can I Prove That Repetitive Stress Injuries Are Work-Related?

work-related stress injury

Suffering injuries in a workplace accident puts employees in a difficult spot. On one hand, employees need time to heal from their injuries and to obtain the necessary medical treatment. On the other hand, many employers limit the amount of time workers can take—even after an injury.

Those workers who suffer from repetitive stress injuries face additional hurdles, as these injuries are “invisible” and often do not manifest themselves immediately. At the Hartley Law Firm, our dedicated attorneys help injured workers obtain the compensation they need and deserve. With our help, you can get back on your feet, back to work, and on with your life.

What Are Repetitive Stress Injuries?

Repetitive stress injuries, also called overuse injuries or wear and tear injuries, are injuries caused by repetitive use of the same muscle group. Repetitive stress injuries are very common but also quite misunderstood by employers and employees alike. Stress injuries often occur slowly over time, making them difficult to identify and diagnose. For example, administrative workers may develop carpal tunnel syndrome after spending years typing, or a construction worker may suffer permanent nerve damage after regularly using a tool that emits forceful vibrations.

Types of Repetitive Stress Injuries

There are many types of repetitive stress injuries. Some of the most common stress injuries include:

  • Back strains and sprains,
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome,
  • Osgood-Schlatter disease,
  • Shin splints,
  • Tendonitis,
  • Tennis elbow, and
  • Trigger finger and trigger thumb.

If you are experiencing what you believe to be a work-related repetitive stress injury, the Hartley Law Firm can help you review all your options and pursue a claim for compensation.

Workers’ Compensation and Repetitive Stress Injuries

Texas workers’ compensation law provides a mechanism for injured workers to obtain medical and income-replacement benefits after a workplace injury. If an employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, an injured worker does not need to prove that anyone else was at fault for their injuries. Instead, they need to prove that their injuries were work-related. In some workplace injuries, this is easy. For example, if you break your arm while on the job, there is little doubt it was work-related.

Repetitive stress injuries may qualify for workers’ compensation benefits; however, proving that a repetitive stress injury is work-related can be challenging. Often, employers and their workers’ compensation insurance carriers deny these claims, arguing that an employee’s injuries were either pre-existing or unrelated to their employment. The burden to prove work-relatedness rests with the worker, so it is important for injured workers to understand how to prove their repetitive stress injury was caused by their employment.

Proving Work-Relatedness After a Repetitive Stress Injury

If you are suffering from a repetitive stress injury, you will need to establish that your condition is related to your job. To do so, you should obtain immediate medical treatment. Submitting records of all doctors’ visits, physical therapy appointments, surgeries, and other medical treatment can help you prove that your condition was related to your job.

Of course, doctors are often more concerned about diagnosing and treating your condition than determining its origins. Thus, these cases frequently require you to present the testimony of a medical expert witness. This could be your treating physician, although it doesn’t need to be. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can connect injured workers to medical experts who can help connect an injury to a worker’s employment.

Keep in mind, your employer and their insurance company will very likely contest your claim. Thus, you should be prepared to present compelling evidence that your repetitive stress injury was the direct result of your work. Importantly, your employment doesn’t necessarily need to be the only cause of your injuries. As long as your job duties were a contributing factor, you can pursue a workers’ compensation claim.

Contact an Experienced Attorney for Immediate Assistance

If you were diagnosed with a repetitive stress injury and are wondering, “How can I prove that a repetitive stress injury is work related?” contact the Hartley Law Firm. Our personal injury and workers’ compensation lawyers have extensive experience connecting injured workers to the compensation they need to get their lives back on track.

We work with a large network of experts who can evaluate your condition and provide a compelling opinion about its origins. We also handle all workers’ compensation cases on a contingency basis. This means we do not bill you for our services unless we can secure compensation on your behalf. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a workers’ compensation lawyer today. You can also connect with us through our online contact form.

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