Springfield Occupational Disease Lawyers for Missouri Workers’ Compensation
When most people think of workers' compensation benefits, they think of workplace injuries. After all, medical conditions are often caused by a specific incident at work.
However, many workers eventually need workers' compensation benefits not because of one specific accident but because they developed an occupational disease or medical condition over time. Some of those conditions may at first seem unrelated to work. Recognizing your condition as a common occupational illness can help you get the necessary benefits.
In Missouri, workers who suffer from occupational diseases are entitled to the same benefits as those injured on the job. They can receive medical treatment benefits to cover the costs of treating the disease and temporary or permanent disability benefits based on the severity and permanency of the condition. Death benefits are also available for the surviving dependents if the disease leads to the worker's death.
At Webster & Carlton, we focus our entire practice on helping workers navigate the complexities of compensation claims for injuries and occupational diseases. Our experienced team understands the nuances of the Missouri workers’ compensation system and the specific challenges associated with occupational disease claims.
We can guide you through every step of the process, from proving the link between your work and your disease to negotiating with insurance companies to secure the maximum benefits you deserve. We aim to ensure that you are adequately compensated and that your rights are protected throughout the process.
Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Occupational Diseases
Benefits available for occupational diseases can include medical benefits, disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation, which aims to help workers gain new skills to return to the workforce. When occupational disease leads to fatality, death benefits can be sought for surviving spouses and children.
At Webster & Carlton, we understand the impact of an occupational disease on a worker's life and livelihood. We are committed to assisting you in obtaining the maximum benefits you are entitled to and providing you with the comprehensive legal representation you need during this challenging time.
Why Do I Need a Missouri Workers’ Compensation Attorney?A workers’ compensation claim can take several months, even years, to resolve, especially if you continue to suffer from the effects of your work-related injury. Your employer and its insurance company will be represented by highly skilled attorneys who know how to exploit an injured employee. You need to level the playing field by hiring a Missouri workers’ compensation lawyer who will fight on your behalf.
What Happens If My Employer Denies Me Workers’ Compensation Benefits?In many cases, your employer or their insurance company will promptly pay any workers’ compensation benefits. But if they deny benefits–or stop paying them before you receive what you believe you are entitled to under the law–then you have the right to file a claim with the Missouri Division of Workers’ Compensation. An administrative law judge appointed by the Division will review your claim and either conduct mediation between you and your employer, or alternatively hold a formal hearing to determine your right to compensation.
What Kinds of Injuries Are Covered?
Under Missouri law, workers’ compensation only covers injuries that arise “out of and in the course of employment.” This includes accidents that occur during your work shift. It also includes “occupational diseases” contracted at work, provided workplace exposure was the “prevailing” cause.
Workers’ compensation is not necessarily limited to injuries suffered at your normal workplace. If your job requires you to travel–i.e., make deliveries or conduct on-site work with clients–you may be compensated for injuries sustained in the course of such travel. However, Missouri workers’ compensation law specifically excludes injuries sustained while commuting from home to work and back, even if you use a company-owned car.
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