Night shifts, deadlines, long drives, traffic congestion, demanding customers, and nagging bosses are all responsible for the increasing stress among workers these days. Workers don’t even realize when work stress progresses beyond tension headaches and causes something as serious as a heart attack or stroke. Chicago worker injury lawyer explains that work-related cardiovascular events are covered by workers compensation. This means workers can receive financial relief when they need it the most.
In Illinois, an injured worker is entitled to benefits for work stress if the working conditions have exposed him/her to risks that are greater than those facing the general public.
In order to receive workers compensation benefits for stress in Illinois, you will have to prove a specific work condition or activity probably contributed to your cardiovascular condition such as heart attack, stroke, or has accelerated or aggravated a heart condition.
Even if you already suffer from a condition such as high blood pressure or heart disease, you may still be able to recover compensation benefits as long as you can provide medical evidence that your job contributed to your stroke or heart attack.
Workers compensation for strokes and heart attacks from job stress
There is a significant difference between “what is probable” and “what is possible” under the law. This makes heart attack claims related to job stress difficult. If you experienced extraordinary levels of stress, i.e. different from the stress generally faced by the general public, and the continuing stress, over a long time period, affected you cumulatively–you may have a claim.
Strokes and heart attacks from physical work
Workers in all types of industries can suffer strokes and heart attacks caused by physical exertion from activities such as lifting heavy objects. Heart attacks that result from physical exertion are similar to other workplace accidents. The only difference is that the damage occurs to the heart muscle, and not to other muscles or soft tissues. If you have been constantly moving heavy objects to the new office, and you have a heart attack that night, you may be eligible to receive workers compensation benefits.
You may receive benefits even if you already suffer from high blood pressure or high cholesterol. However, making a successful claim may not be easy if your job usually requires heavy lifting, but you may still be eligible if you suffered a heart attack when working in extreme or unusual conditions such as extreme cold or heat.
Work related strokes and heart attacks may also result from a different type of work accidents such as from the shock of a burn, or from blood loss or pain of an equipment-related accident. In such cases, proving a claim and getting benefits is much easier.
Seeking legal help
If you have suffered a heart attack or stroke due to work stress or the physical work you do, you may be entitled to workers compensation benefits. It is in your best interest to have a competent and qualified Chicago workers’ compensation lawyer on your side, who can protect your rights.