You often hear about workers’ compensation injuries in conjunction with accident injuries, such as falls, cuts, back injuries, or cumulative-trauma injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome. But what about psychological injuries? Do workers’ compensation benefits cover these cases?
What Is a Psychological Injury?
Psychological injuries can manifest with a range of frightening symptoms. Nightmares and sleeplessness are common. Experiencing flashbacks of the incident, sudden emotional upsets for no apparent reason, or a general and pervasive depression are just a few of the symptoms of psychological or emotional injuries.
A common source of psychological injuries stems from an actual physical injury that then expands into stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental conditions. When this occurs, the victim is left attempting to heal physically as well as deal with mental stresses, with escalating anxiety.
There are also instances of injuries that are only psychological. For example, PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) can occur when workers are have been a part of, or witnessed, a traumatic event. Firefighters, first responders, medical professionals, and law enforcement personnel are examples of professions in which employees are often thrust into situations where they must deal with disturbing, violent, or horrific events.
When an undesirable mental condition is a result of your work, or a work-related incident, and the condition causes you to perform below the usual level of competency or efficiency, the need for workers’ comp benefits could definitely come into play.
These benefits will cover any lost wages you’ve experienced, as well as any medical treatments to assist in alleviating the psychological injury. If you have hired an experienced and qualified attorney to help you through the claim process, your lawyer will get to work to obtain the necessary documentation from mental health professionals to verify you are unable to function due to psychological injuries.
Why You Need An Experienced Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Just as if you had broken a bone, received a burn, or strained a ligament, a psychological injury has the same potential to disrupt your life, both at work and in your everyday life. Unlike physical injuries, however, mental disorders can be more challenging to prove in a workers’ compensation claim.
These claims require evidence that some workplace situation directly affected your mental status in a non-optimum way, or your physical injury contributed to a psychological condition. A psychological injury is more likely to be approved if presented in conjunction with a work-related physical injury. Either way, an experienced lawyer will be able to advise you of your best options when presenting a workers’ comp claim for psychological injury.
Our office, Petro Cohen, P.C., is dedicated to helping workers in New Jersey who have been injured on the job. We have extensive experience handling workers’ compensation claims, and we are dedicated to helping our clients get the benefits they deserve. We guide you through the process, taking on the burden of doing what needs to be done so you can rest, get treatment, and heal. Call (888) 675-7607 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation today.