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How To Avoid A Worker's Compensation Denial

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If you have been injured at work to the point that you are permanently disabled, or if you have an illness that has been worsened due to your career, then you are likely eligible for disability benefits. You may be able to receive both worker's compensation and social security disability at the same time. When this happens, social security payments and worker's compensation benefits will be added together so that you receive no more than 80% of your previous employment earnings. You will likely need to settle your worker's compensation case before your social security disability case is heard in court. Your best option is to work with a lawyer who specializes in all types of disability. There are certain things that can destroy your worker's compensation case though, so keep reading to find out what you should not do.

Lying About Symptoms

If you feel strongly about your injury or illness, you may feel that you need to impart the seriousness of your condition to your physician. You may feel that you must exaggerate your pain levels or you might believe that you need to indicate that you are unable to complete normal activities. Unfortunately, your exaggerations can get you into a lot of trouble. Your physician will complete tests like x-rays, MRIs, blood work, and specific pain tests to diagnose your condition. If your symptoms are not in line with a typical diagnosis, then your doctor may indicate that you are a malingerer.  

A malingerer is a person who exaggerates their symptoms in order to receive a reward. In your circumstance, the reward is the positive outcome of your worker's compensation case. In some instances, individuals will malinger in order to receive narcotic pain medication. You do not want to be associated with this kind of condition, because the court may look unfavorably on your case.

Be Specific Instead

When you see your physician, make sure that you are specific when relaying your symptoms and difficulties. Provide accurate details of your current pain levels and also indicate if pain becomes worse when you partake in specific activities. This way you can be honest while also indicating that symptoms are sometimes worse.

If you can, keep a notebook and record your pain, discomfort, and any other symptoms that are associated with your condition. Not only will this help your doctor to make a quick and correct diagnosis, but the paperwork can be supplied to your lawyer so it can be filed with your worker's compensation paperwork. In some cases, the insurance company or employer who is arguing against you during your court hearing will ask for an independent medical examination. By law, you are required to undergo the physical. You will likely only meet briefly with this individual, and detailed symptom records can help the examiner to make a proper determination.

Not Following Doctor's Orders

When you see your physician for an injury or illness, you will likely be informed of the types of activities you need to stay away from. In many cases, physical injuries will preclude you from lifting heavy objects, performing yard work, or from exercising. If you feel better, then you may feel as though you can ignore your doctor's orders for several days. This is not wise, because conditions like repetitive strain and back injuries are incredibly complex. These injuries along with a variety of others produce chronic pain that can stop for a short period of time. If you are active when the pain stops, then your discomfort will likely return and you can make the initial injury worse.

If you resume activities and hurt yourself, then your doctor will note this in your file. It them may seem like you can return to normal activities if you want to. Even if this is not the case, the insurance company that is fighting your case may decide that you have a new injury that was not caused in the workplace. Your entire case may then be denied. The fact that you do not follow doctor's orders or treatment advice may be a cause for a denial in itself as well.

Rest and Take Medications

If your doctor tells you not to involve yourself in activities, then make sure not to push yourself physically. Take all of your medications, even if you are feeling better. If you think that your condition is getting better, then make arrangements to see your doctor or click here for info. Your physician may ask you to stop taking certain medications. Your doctor may also ask you to go on light duty at work. If your doctor feels that you can work part time, then make sure to arrange this with your employer.  

Light duty does not mean that your worker's compensation case will be dismissed. It does mean that you are showing your willingness to work at least a small amount. If you do this, you may get partial worker's compensation or disability benefits, and you may be eligible for full benefits in the future if your injury does not make it possible for you to stay on light duty for very long.

If you have been injured at work, then it is possible that you can start receiving both worker's compensation and social security disability. In many cases, your lawyer will work to resolve your worker's compensation case first before starting the disability process. This means that you need to do everything in your power to reduce mistakes that may result in a worker's compensation denial.