Filing For Workers' Compensation Benefits With PTSD: What You Need To Know
The symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, can impact your ability to perform your work duties. Proving whether or not you deserve workers' compensation benefits for it, though, can be difficult. Here is what you need to know if you have PTSD and are unable to work.
Can PTSD Result from Working?
Some situations within the workplace can result in a PTSD. For instance, firefighters who bear witness to a horrible tragedy that resulted from a fire could have work-related PTSD. The same could apply to a teacher who witnesses a shooting at school.
PTSD can result in a range of symptoms, including flashbacks and nightmares. The effects of PTSD can last a few months of many years. Unfortunately, the disorder can hinder your ability to work.
Is PTSD Eligible for Workers' Compensation Benefits?
Mental health illnesses are sometimes payable through workers' compensation benefits, but there are many hurdles that have to be jumped. In fact, some states do not even allow benefits for mental health disorders. If your state does allow it, you and your attorney will need to show that the event you experienced was so traumatizing, you developed PTSD.
You also need to show that the symptoms of the disorder also has led to physical symptoms. For instance, if you experience anxiety every time you report for work and it causes your blood pressure to rise to dangerous levels, you would be more successful in your claim.
What Is the Best Way to Prove PTSD?
Your claim for workers' compensation benefits based on PTSD will be closely examined by your employer's insurance company. A good way to prove your claim is to get treatment for your mental and physical health on a consistent basis.
For instance, see a psychiatrist for your mental disorder and seek treatment from your general doctor for any physical symptoms you have. Ensure that both professionals are documenting that your symptoms are related to the trauma that you experienced at work.
Be consistent in discussing your symptoms. The insurance company could interview your co-workers, friends, and family to find gaps in your story. It is important that you are very clear with everyone that the symptoms you are experiencing are directly related to the trauma that occurred in the workplace.
Due to the complexity of workers' compensation claims and those for PTSD, it is important that you talk to an employment or personal injury lawyer. The lawyer like one from Hammer, Ferretti, and Schiavoni will know whether or not you can legally file a claim and help you submit it to the insurance company.