Can You File for Workers’ Comp with a Pre-Existing Condition? A Columbus Workers’ Compensation Attorney Explains What You Need to Know
When you get injured at work in Ohio, having a pre-existing condition does not bar you from collecting workers’ compensation benefits. However, it can make filing a successful claim more challenging. With this in mind, if you need to file for benefits and you have a pre-existing condition, it will be important for you to hire an experienced Columbus workers’ compensation attorney to help you through the process.
A Pre-Existing Condition is Not a Bar to Collecting Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Ohio
If you got injured at work and you are an eligible employee, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits under Ohio law. This is the general rule, and it applies without regard to any pre-existing condition you may have. However, you must be able to prove that you are entitled to benefits, and this is where having a pre-existing condition can make handling your situation more challenging.
Let’s look at an example:
You suffer from chronic back pain. You hurt your back at your old job, and your injury never fully healed. Your pain makes it difficult to lift heavy objects. At your current job, you bent over to pick up a package, and your back seized up. You went to the doctor, and your doctor diagnosed you with a herniated disc.
Is your injury eligible for workers’ compensation? It depends. If your back seizing up was a symptom of your prior injury that never fully healed, then your injury might not be covered. On the other hand, if you suffered a herniated disc when you bent over to pick up the package, then your injury should be covered even though you were suffering from chronic back pain. You will need your doctor to pinpoint the cause of your injury; and, if you qualify for benefits, you will need your attorney to use your medical records to prove your right to coverage.
Tips for Seeking Workers’ Compensation When You Have a Pre-Existing Condition
So, you have a pre-existing condition and you got injured at work. What should you do to maximize your chances of collecting benefits? Here are some tips from our Columbus workers’ compensation attorneys:
- Do not try to hide the fact that you have a pre-existing condition.
- Ask your doctor to explain how your work injury is unrelated to your pre-existing condition.
- Take care of your medical needs, and do not delay treatment until you find out whether your injury is covered under workers’ comp.
- Hire an experienced Columbus workers’ compensation attorney who can deal with the challenges of securing benefits on your behalf.
Talk to a Columbus Workers’ Compensation Attorney for Free
If you need to know more about filing for benefits with a pre-existing condition, we invite you to schedule a free consultation with one of our Columbus workers’ compensation attorneys. You can reach us 24/7, so call 888-444-7440 or tell us how we can help online now.