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Workers' Compensation and Pre-Existing Conditions

Posted on in Workers' Compensation

pre-existing conditions, Crystal Lake Personal Injury AttorneysAn injury on the job can be a devastating blow to an employee who has financial responsibilities to meet. An employee who is hurt on the job could end up in a lot of pain and be unable to work to the full extent he or she could before the injury. Fortunately, in most cases the employee would be covered by an employer's workers' compensation insurance policy, have medical costs covered, and receive some pay while in recovery. Of course, it is possible for a workplace injury to aggravate an injury that was not work-related, and this may leave an employee wondering if he or she can still receive workers' compensation.

According to the Illinois courts, an employee is not precluded from receiving workers' compensation benefits under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act because of a pre-existing injury. Because the temporary total disability payment an employee receives as a result of a work-related injury is calculated as a part of the employee's gross weekly wages over a period of time, this benefit is not changed by the existence of a pre-existing injury. However, the total amount of benefits the employee ultimately receives can be affected by how much of the injury is pre-existing.

Note that even if the employee's pre-existing injury contributes greatly to the employee's injury, the employee may still receive workers' compensation benefits if his injuries arise out of his employment. For example, if an employee has a knee injury, and this causes him to trip and fall at his place of employment, the employee may nonetheless be entitled to workers' compensation benefits.

An injury is said to arise out of the employment if it results from a risk that is inherent or incidental to the employment. A good way to look at it would be to ask if the injury occurred when the employee was doing a work-related task, or a task specifically assigned by the employer. In some cases, the level of degeneration or deterioration of a person's condition can affect how the injury's connection to a worker's employment is determined. In some cases, if the worker's' condition was so deteriorated that any activity could have caused him injury, it may affect the worker's claim of compensation from his employer.

Testimony from medical professionals is used to determine the aggravation of injuries and how a work-related injury contributed to it. An injured worker should keep additional logs or records of how his or her daily life is affected by an aggravated injury. This may help support the medical evidence.

Contact an Experienced Workers' Compensation Attorney

If you suffered a workplace injury, especially one that aggravated a pre-existing injury, you should contact an experienced workers' compensation attorney to fight for you while you recover. Contact the experienced Crystal Lake personal injury attorneys at our office for a free consultation. We are available to meet with you at home if you are unable to travel due to your injuries.




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