Michigan workers comp attorney explains how insurance companies use arthritis to dispute payment of workers comp benefits.
Our workers comp attorneys want you to know that insurance companies will stop your workers comp benefits because you have arthritis. It does not matter how you hurt yourself or whether you had any pain before your work injury. Insurance companies will even dispute your workers comp claim regardless of what your own doctor says.
What is arthritis?
The University of Michigan Health System explains:
“Arthritis is mainly a disease of the spine, hip, hand, knee, and foot. But it can happen in other joints too. A joint is where two bones connect. And you have them all over your body. With arthritis, there are changes in the cartilage that cause it to break down. When it breaks down, the bones rub together and cause damage and pain. Experts don’t know why this breakdown in cartilage happens. But aging, joint injury, being overweight, and genetics may be a part of the reason.”
How is arthritis different from a work injury?
Almost everyone develops some arthritis as they get older. Many times the symptoms of arthritis are minimal and working is not a problem. When you have a specific injury at work something may have changed. It is important to explain to your doctor how you hurt yourself and any new symptoms that you may experience.
Claims for back and neck injuries are often disputed
Insurance companies will often disregard the facts surrounding your injury if they see preexisting arthritis in your back or neck. Conditions like degenerative disc disease or stenosis are often used to stop your workers comp benefits.
It is important to understand that these medical conditions can be made worse by a work injury and are compensable under workers comp law. This is especially true if you have developed a herniated disc or a pinched nerve.
Watch out for disputes involving a preexisting condition
Insurance adjusters think of arthritis as a magic word that gives them permission to stop workers comp benefits. This also applies to workers comp claims involving your knees, shoulders, and elbows.
Get the workers comp advice you need because it costs you nothing
An experienced workers comp attorney will not charge you a fee to evaluate your case. Don’t let the insurance company get away with denying your claim for workers comp benefits.
To speak with one of our workers comp attorneys, call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation. There is no fee unless workers comp benefits are recovered for you.
– Alex Berman is the founder of the law firm. Hes been representing injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 30 years. Alex has helped countless people obtain workers compensation benefits and never charges a fee to review a case.
– Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Charles Williams.