Workers’ compensation benefits are available for a wide variety of injuries and illnesses, but can you file for workers’ compensation benefits for PTSD? You may be able to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits if you develop PTSD as a result of your job. This article will explore the possibility of filing for workers’ compensation benefits for PTSD and what you need to know about the process.
To find out if you qualify for benefits and to learn more about how to file a claim, contact an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer today.
What is Post Stress Traumatic Disorder (PTSD)?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health illness that can be brought on by a terrible incident. It is characterized by flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and dissociation.
In some cases, people with PTSD may also experience physical symptoms such as chest pain or insomnia. While it is normal to experience some distress after a traumatic event, most people will recover within a few weeks. For those with PTSD, however, the symptoms can last for months or even years. If you are experiencing symptoms of PTSD, it is important to seek professional help.
Treatment can vary depending on the individual but may include therapy, medication, or both. With proper treatment, most people with PTSD can eventually recover and live relatively normal lives.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Workers’ Compensation Benefits
When most people think of worker’s compensation, they envision claims for physical injuries sustained on the job. However, worker’s compensation can also be used to cover psychological injuries, such as PTSD. As a mental condition, PTSD is considered a covered injury, provided that the triggering event took place at work or occurred during the course and scope of the worker’s employment.
If you are suffering from PTSD as a result of your job, you may be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits. These benefits can help cover treatment costs, lost wages, and other expenses. In addition, filing for worker’s compensation can help to hold your employer accountable for creating a safe workplace. If you are suffering from PTSD, don’t hesitate to pursue the benefits you deserve.
The specific benefits you are eligible for will depend on your state and the severity of your condition.
Generally, workers’ compensation benefits can cover:
- Medical expenses: These can include the costs of therapy, hospitalization, medications, and other treatments related to your PTSD
- Lost wages (temporary total disability): If your PTSD symptoms prevent you from working, you may be eligible for benefits to help replace some of your lost income
- Rehabilitation costs: if you need to undergo rehabilitation to help you recover from your PTSD, workers’ compensation may cover the cost of this treatment
- Permanent partial disability benefits: if you suffer any long-term or permanent impairment as a result of your PTSD, you may be entitled to permanent partial disability benefits.
To receive workers’ compensation benefits for PTSD, you will need to start by filing a claim with your employer. You will need to provide documentation of your condition, such as a diagnosis from a mental health professional.
Your workers’ comp attorney will submit an Application for Adjustment of Claim to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. If you and the defendant cannot reach a settlement, your case will be referred to an arbitrator who will decide the outcome and any damages you are entitled to.
How To Win Your PTSD Claim
If you want to file a workers’ compensation claim for your PTSD, there are some steps you can take to improve your chances of success.
As a general rule, you should document everything related to your job and injury to have the best chance of winning your claim for PTSD. This means keeping a record of everything from the date of the incident to the names of any witnesses.
If you have any physical evidence, such as bruises or scars, be sure to take pictures and keep them safe. It would help if you kept a journal detailing how the incident affected you emotionally and mentally. The more evidence you have, the better your chances when it comes time to file a claim.
Get a Diagnosis
It may be obvious, but getting a diagnosis of PTSD (and/or any other psychiatric conditions) by a qualified mental health professional is necessary for a successful claim. It provides evidence of your disorder’s existence and can help establish the severity of your symptoms. In addition, a diagnosis can help to identify any other conditions that may be contributing to your symptoms.
The best way to get a diagnosis is to see a mental health professional who is experienced in diagnosing and treating PTSD. If you cannot see a mental health professional, you can also ask your primary care physician for a referral.
Once you have seen a mental health professional, they will conduct an assessment to determine whether or not you meet the criteria for a diagnosis of PTSD.
Evidence can include witness information, photographs or video, police reports, and anything else that documents the event or events that led to your PTSD. It is essential to be as detailed as possible to give a clear picture of what caused your condition and the fact that it occurred in the course of your employment.
Engage a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If you want to file a workers’ compensation claim for your PTSD, it is highly recommended that you retain an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. Attempting to navigate the workers’ compensation system without an experienced lawyer is like attempting to treat yourself for a fractured ankle without the assistance of doctors and medical professionals. Bottom line: don’t try to go through this process alone; seek out the help of a legal professional who can help you win your case.
Get a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Today
If you are a worker who has been diagnosed with PTSD, it is important to understand your rights and what benefits may be available to you. The workers’ compensation system is in place to help injured workers get the medical care and financial assistance they need as a result of on-the-job injuries.
The work injury attorneys at Drake & Collopy, P.C., have decades of experience handling workers’ compensation claims and will help ensure you receive the benefits you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your case.