Worker Compensation and Pre-Existing Injuries

If you have been injured in a workplace accident, and you have previously injured the same part of your body or have a condition that affects it (such as arthritis), you may be wondering if you can collect Worker compensation for the worsening of your injury or symptoms.

Florida Worker compensation will cover your situation if the new injury is the major contributing cause of your current symptoms. This determination is an all-or-nothing decision; there is no option for paying a portion of an employee’s costs if your symptoms are caused by a combination of your previous condition and your accident.

Not surprisingly, many employers and their insurers try to avoid paying compensation in any situation in which they can argue that you have a pre-existing condition. As a result, we have a great deal of experience in how to help you convince the insurance company to pay for your medical care and lost wages.

In a situation like this, having proof is vital. However, you are trying to prove a negative — that you were not suffering from pain or other symptoms before your accident. If your medical records show that you had recently seen a doctor for a related reason, and you told the doctor that you were suffering from pain or other symptoms, it will make it harder to win your case.

However, it is not impossible to win in this kind of situation. You have to prove that your accident has caused more than 50 percent of your condition as it exists today. If you were suffering from nagging pain that it never prevented you from doing your job, but now your pain is excruciating, you can argue that the accident is the major contributing cause of your pain, even if you admit that you had some pain before the accident.

If your original injury or condition was itself caused by a work accident, and you received Worker compensation at that time, it is sometimes harder for the insurer to deny your claim. The rules are complicated, and if you are in this situation, it is extremely important to get experienced legal advice from an attorney with experience in Florida Worker compensation law.

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