You go to work everyday despite the weather. You brave snow and ice on the roads to get where you need to be. Unfortunately, so does everyone else and that means germs. We are deep into the cold and flu season, meaning people are showing up at work when they would have been better off staying home in bed.
Not only are these people showing up at work, but they are bringing their illness with them and sharing it with those closest to them. You go to work on Tuesday feeling fine and wake up Wednesday with a throat that feels like you’ve swallowed razor blades and muscles that feel like you’ve been run over. You’ve caught the flu from your co-worker. Can you file workers’ compensation?
To be able to file a workers compensation claim and be successful, you must be able to prove that your illness or injury is work related. That means that you’ve got to be able to prove that your flu was directly caused by the conditions at work. This can be difficult.
It’s not to say it’s impossible, but the flu is a common illness that can be contracted almost anywhere. If you leave your house and enter a public building, you can contract the flu. If you go to your parents’ house, you can contract the flu. Defense attorneys know this and will fight hard to cast doubt that you contracted the illness at work.
Let’s say you aren’t dealing with the flu, but frostbite. You work outside for a living and despite wearing all the right protection in the biting cold, you’ve developed frostbite on your face that requires medical attention. Can you file a claim for workers’ compensation?
Here’s the key: You have to prove that your injury was causal and not casual. That means that it was directly related to your job duties. For example, you are required to complete work outside in the scope of your employment. You sustain frostbite. Chances are you will be covered. On the other hand, if you chose to spend your 15-minute break outside in the freezing weather, it’s doubtful that you would be covered under workers’ compensation laws.
Even if you believe that you may not be covered under current workers’ compensation laws, it’s important that you speak with a local attorney should you be injured or become ill at work. State laws can vary greatly and you shouldn’t assume that you will or won’t be covered.
If you have sustained illness or injury on the job in Charlotte, you may be entitled to compensation. Call our office today and let us review the details of your situation. We will help you determine your rights.. Contact us to schedule an appointment for a free case evaluation.