You’ve had an accident at work, you were sent to the doctor and he took you off of work. You’ve filed your workers compensation claim with the insurance carrier only to receive a notice that your claim is being denied. They claim that you are suffering from an ordinary disease of life or a pre-existing condition. Not only are you in pain and unable to work, you are receiving no benefits and have no way to pay your bills. What do you do?
Most people will argue that since they were able to do their normal job prior to the accident and are now unable to work, it should be clear that they suffered a compensable injury. Ten years ago this argument was sufficient to allow a judge to rule in the workers’ favor. However, the Texas Workers’ Compensation system has steadily become more difficult for the injured worker to prevail.
The burden is on the injured worker to prove by a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not), that they have suffered a new injury. To do this, they must show that the pre-existing condition had some enhancement, acceleration, or worsening of the underlying condition. This is generally done through a report from a doctor describing how the underlying condition enhanced, accelerated or made worse by the accident.
Always consult with an attorney who understands the Texas Workers’ Compensation system and can help you know when you have the proper evidence to win your case. The attorney will also assist you in finding a doctor that works for you and not the insurance carrier.
Daniel L. Morris, The Morris Law Firm, firstname.lastname@example.org (214)357-1782