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When Work Injuries are Linked to Non-Work Accidents – What You Should Know

Work injury claimLife is full of seemingly benign but ultimately dangerous situations; driving, biking, rock climbing, and even just crossing the street can result in minor to severe injuries. Unfortunately, even those minor injuries can increase the risk for a secondary injury. If the secondary injury occurs on the job but is then linked to an event outside of work, a victim may be denied workers’ compensation benefits. A woman from Pennsylvania serves as a cautionary tale.

Banker Denied Workers’ Compensation

The Pennsylvania woman, a banker and barrel racing hobbyist, suffered two concussions while riding horses. The first occurred on April 1, 2013. The second occurred just two days later. Her doctor encouraged her to take time off work, which she did. Unfortunately, when she returned, she experienced extreme difficulties concentrating. She could not organize her paperwork and struggled to remember the names of her customers.

Upon realizing she could no longer work, the woman appealed to her employer to receive workers’ compensation. She claimed that the stress of her job had resulted in further injury. Her employer denied her claim, and then the courts stood by their decision.

Work-Related Secondary Injuries

The situation of the Pennsylvania is unique; she did not experience a secondary work injury. Instead, she only experienced additional stress from two subsequent traumatic brain injuries. However, her experience shows just how complex matters can become if a work injury is linked to an event outside of work. An example would be if an employee suffered a car accident and returned to work, only to experience a strained muscle in their back. While the back injury may be work-related, it could be ruled as an injury from the accident, which might result in a denial of their worker’s compensation claim.

Protecting Your Rights in a Secondary Injury

If a work injury could be linked to an injury that occurred outside the workplace (or even just a reportable incident that did not result in injury), victims should seek skilled and experienced assistance with their case. Not only can this ensure the victim is appropriately represented throughout the duration of their case, but it can also preserve their right to pursue compensation for injuries sustained while on the job.

Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, LLP understands the challenges that victims experience when pursuing a work injury claim. Dedicated and experienced, we will fight for your rights. Schedule your free consultation to learn how our San Jose work injury lawyers can assist with your case. Call (408) 289-1417 today.

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