The most common type of workers’ compensation claims arise from injuries suffered in a workplace accident or work that is repetitive in nature or . Occupational diseases are also common in the workplace, oftentimes more so than people realize, and can form the basis of a workers’ compensation claim.
An occupational disease is one that develops after a worker is exposed to something in the workplace. These diseases become chronic ailments and often require lifelong treatment. One cause could be exposure to toxic chemicals. For example, a coal miner may develop cancer from breathing in asbestos. A hairdresser may develop a respiratory disease from breathing in chemicals contained in hair products and dyes.
The CDC has identified a list of the most common occupational diseases in the United States. Included among those diseases are contact dermatitis, hearing loss, chronic obstructive pulmonary dysfunction, fertility issues, infectious diseases, and disorders of the back and musculoskeletal issues. Such diseases vary among countries due to the prevalence of differing types of environmental hazards and occupations.
Although workers’ compensation benefits may be recoverable by those who suffer from an occupational disease, an employer and its insurer may try to challenge the claim by alleging that the condition was caused by something outside of the work environment. A knowledgeable attorney can be vital to not only proving an occupational disease claim, but also providing a rebuttal to any claim from an employer that suggests an alternate source. Such cases are often quite complex and drawn out over a long period of time. Attempting to navigate these issues on your own can quickly become costly and time-consuming.