Law Office of James M. Hoffmann Articles Can I Obtain Workers’ Compensation for a Heart Attack?

Can I Obtain Workers’ Compensation for a Heart Attack?

By James Hoffmann  Sep. 7, 2018 1:53p

When you picture a workplace injury, you probably think of something like a broken bone or strain. What you don’t imagine is heart attacks, but people have them at work quite frequently. If this ever happens to you, you should talk to a St. Louis workers compensation lawyer about the possibility of obtaining benefits. Though you will not be entitled to compensation in most situations, your heart attack could be one of the few that is eligible.

How Workers’ Compensation Works

The way the workers’ compensation system functions is as follows. First, a worker is injured during a regular job function. Next, they report the injury and are seen by a doctor, who tells them what their medical bills and physical capabilities will be going forward. After that, they may choose to consult with an attorney before seeking workers compensation benefits. This is how a typical claim goes, but for heart attacks, the process is not so simple.

What You Have to Prove to Obtain Benefits

When you are injured at work, you have to prove that the cause of that injury waswork-related. This is easy in the case of an acute injury, like a broken bone. If you fall off of scaffolding and injure yourself, your damages clearly came as a result of regular work functions. In the case of a heart attack, you will need to prove that your work conditions contributed to it. This is not so simple in the case of a heart attack, as you will learn below.

Why Your Chances are Slim

When you suffer a heart attack, proving that your injury was caused by work is not easy. The reason is that heart attacks almost always come from repeated lifestyle choices. Your regular job functions are unlikely to cause a heart attack, so your chances of obtaining workers’ compensation are slim. Still, you may be eligible if the circumstances surrounding your heart attack fit certain requirements.

Possible Workplace Causes

The workplace conditions that may contribute to a heart attack are excessive heat, exhaustion, and stress. The strongest of them are heat and fatigue because proving them is straightforward. If you can show that your employer put you through an unreasonable amount of heat or work, you may be able to argue that they contributed to your heart attack. Stress is more difficult to show, but may also be used.

Causes Unrelated to the Workplace

The best thing you can do to lessen your chance of heart attack is target factors outside of work. The most prominent of them are obesity, tobacco use, lack of exercise, and stress. If you can lessen these problem areas, you will be significantly safer.

Now that you understand the details surrounding heart attacks and workers’ compensation claims, you should know whether or not a heart attack is worthy of compensation based on the factors surrounding it. If you still have any indecision, you can contact a lawyer for more information.

2001 S Hanley Rd #325
St. Louis, MO
Phone: (314) 361-4300

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