Wrist injuries are very common and they can happen in a lot of different ways. Whether you suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, sprains, strains or something else, you should get examined by a doctor right away. If your wrist injury happened at work, you will also need to file a workers’ compensation claim.
Proving your one-time slip and fall in the office caused you to suffer a fractured wrist is likely pretty straightforward. However, what if you suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome that developed over months or even years? In either situation, how do you prove your wrist injury is work-related? What evidence do you need to support your claim?
Jay Trucks has extensive experience managing workers’ comp claims. Whether you sustained a wrist injury in a one-time accident or are suffering from an occupational injury, like carpal tunnel, we are prepared to help. Contact our firm for a free case review to learn more.
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Why Work-Related Wrist Injuries May Become an Uphill Legal Battle
Proving a wrist injury happened on the job is easier if it is the result of a single accident. For instance, if you sprained your wrist while picking up a heavy box at work.
Even though work-related wrist injuries are very common, they are challenging to prove if they developed gradually. The insurance company may try to deny your claim and say that your injury is not work related . For instance, if you develop carpal tunnel, but play an instrument or do weightlifting, they may try to argue your hobbies are the cause of your injury.
How Do You Prove a Work-Related Wrist Injury?
The steps you take for proving your work-related wrist injury will largely depend on how the injury occurred.
One-Time Work-Related Wrist Injuries
Wrist injuries that happen because of an accident at work are considerably easier to validate. You can take pictures of the accident scene and you may even have one or more witnesses who saw what happened.
After reporting the accident, you should get a medical examination to determine how badly you are hurt. It is also important to file your claim for workers’ compensation as soon after seeing the doctor as possible. Getting immediate medical care after an injury helps to link your injuries to the accident.
Alternatively, waiting to seek emergency medical care or file your workers’ comp claim could have an damaging effect on your credibility. This is bad news when seeking workers’ compensation. It can seem that you are trying to stay out of work, but not taking any steps to get better.
Common work-related wrist injuries from a one-time event may include include burns, lacerations, fractures, sprains or amputations.
Workers’ compensation should cover all related medical costs you incur for your work-related wrist injury, including:
- X-Rays, MRIs or other diagnostic tests
- Prescription or over-the-counter medications (such as for pain)
- Emergency room visit for your initial assessment and diagnosis
- Surgery, if necessary – which could add value to your claim
- Follow-up medical care and treatments
- Physical therapy
- And more
Reasonable and necessary medical costs are covered by workers’ comp for any work-related injuries that last longer than seven days. Once you have notified your employer, he or she must begin to pay your benefits within 14 days. These payments continue weekly until your doctor clears you and determines you can return to work.
Work-Related Carpal Tunnel Injuries That Occur Over Time
Proving that carpal tunnel syndrome is the result of your work duties is a lot harder than if you fell and broke your wrist. However, it is still possible to prove if you take the proper steps. If you are working with an experienced attorney, he or she can guide you on what to do and help you gather evidence that supports your claim.
If you have a wrist injury that developed gradually, like carpal tunnel syndrome, these steps are critical for helping to prove it is work-related:
See a Doctor for Pain That Does Not Go Away
If you have wrist pain that lingers for more than a couple of days, you should get examined by a doctor. Be sure to mention to the treating physician that the pain began at work and seems aggravated by certain work duties. Be as specific as possible. For instance, if the pain is noticeable when doing any of your regular tasks, whether typing, doing data entry or stocking a shelf.
Your doctor will likely order some diagnostic tests to help confirm or rule out the cause and type of injury you are dealing with. These steps will all get noted in your medical records. This is critical, as your medical records can provide evidence that links your injury to your job duties, thus helping to support your workers’ comp claim.
File a Workers’ Comp Injury Report
Once you have been diagnosed with a work-related wrist injury, you should immediately notify your employer. Waiting days or weeks to do this will make your injury far less believable.
Follow-up on Medical Appointments
It is important while seeking treatment for your work-related wrist injury that you do not miss any doctor’s appointments. If you do, be sure to call ahead and have a good reason, such as if you are sick. Any time you go to an appointment, be sure to show up on time.
Missing appointments or being late for your treatments makes you seem less credible. In any kind of injury claim, even to obtain workers’ compensation benefits, credibility is important. If you fail to follow your doctor’s treatment plan and miss appointments, your workers’ comp insurance carrier could discontinue your benefits.
Contact Our Law Firm for a Work-Related Wrist Injury
If you are suffering from a work-related wrist injury and you need to obtain workers compensation benefits, we are prepared to help. Our Flint workers’ compensation lawyers in Michigan have been helping injured workers for decades. We have extensive knowledge of the laws, and we always fight to get you the maximum possible compensation.
Learn more about your legal options and how hiring a qualified attorney may benefit your claim. Call to discuss your situation anytime, night or day. Your initial consultation is completely free, and if we represent you, there are also no upfront costs to pay. We do not get paid unless you do.
Proven Results. (989) 244-0440