+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    er27j17s is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    3

    Could I have a case?

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Indiana

    Back in Aug. of 2011 I had back surgery to repair a bulging disc that was pinching a nerve. After surgery we discovered the disc re-ruptured and I'm facing more surgery as a result of increasing pain.

    Now while I had back problems for years, a friend of mine said my job may have aggravated the original injury and I could be entitled to compensation as a result.

    My job was a machine set up person. A lot of the dies I had to lift were in the 30 to 50 lbs range. And some were located in very questionable places and difficult to retrieve.

    When I returned to work I still had difficulty getting around and walked with a cane (still do). I was sent back to work with no restrictions because at the time we did not know of the re-rupture. As time went I was moved to a job that required a lot of repeated sitting and standing. After my first day of working the job I spent most of the weekend in pain. When I returned to work and expressed my concern about the job they brought up the no restriction and said I could be sent home if I continued to argue. I went back and continued the job as instructed.

    Could I have a case on either of these
  2. #2
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    34,180
    Any compensation you might be entitled to would be limited to coverage of your medical bills, and only then if a link between your job and the surgery could be proven.

    You are free to try to submit a claim through your workers comp carrier and see what they say. It might be wise to consult with a workers comp attorney first, since you've already returned to work. But if your friend, or you, are thinking that you might be entitled to a large payout for damages, he (and you) are mistaken. A settlement when a case is closed, possibly (assuming you are able to make a case for workers comp at all). But you have not won the lawsuit lottery.

    Now, as to your restrictions. Have you gone to HR and requested an accomodation under the ADA?
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  3. #3
    er27j17s is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    3
    Quote Originally Posted by cbg View Post
    Any compensation you might be entitled to would be limited to coverage of your medical bills, and only then if a link between your job and the surgery could be proven.

    You are free to try to submit a claim through your workers comp carrier and see what they say. It might be wise to consult with a workers comp attorney first, since you've already returned to work. But if your friend, or you, are thinking that you might be entitled to a large payout for damages, he (and you) are mistaken. A settlement when a case is closed, possibly (assuming you are able to make a case for workers comp at all). But you have not won the lawsuit lottery.

    Now, as to your restrictions. Have you gone to HR and requested an accomodation under the ADA?
    I didn't think I had a claim but since my friend brought it up I thought it was worth questioning

    I wasn't made aware I could have made a request.
    I'm currently on medical leave till I see my surgeon because of the pain I'm in. Time off was requested by my pain management doctor.
  4. #4
    Adam G is offline Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    224
    I agree with CBG that you didnt win the lawsuit lottery but I dont buy that your damages are limited to payment of medical bills. Find a worker's comp attorney and run the fact pattern by him/her.
    Last edited by m martin; 05-21-2012 at 01:35 PM.
  5. #5
    las365 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    2,926
    Generally an aggravation of a pre-existing condition can be a compensable injury under workers comp coverage, but:
    I was sent back to work with no restrictions because at the time we did not know of the re-rupture.
    Are your medical providers saying that the re-rupture occurred BEFORE you returned to work? If so, what diagnostic testing are they relying on for that timeline?

    It seems to me that if your doctors say your re-injury occurred before you went back to work then the workers comp carrier would probably have a strong argument that working didn't cause the current problem.
  6. #6
    er27j17s is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    3
    Quote Originally Posted by las365 View Post
    Generally an aggravation of a pre-existing condition can be a compensable injury under workers comp coverage, but:

    Are your medical providers saying that the re-rupture occurred BEFORE you returned to work? If so, what diagnostic testing are they relying on for that timeline?

    It seems to me that if your doctors say your re-injury occurred before you went back to work then the workers comp carrier would probably have a strong argument that working didn't cause the current problem.
    The re-rupture was before returning to work. But as the work continued so did the increase in pain.
  7. #7
    OHRoadwarrior is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    10,568
    If you went to work, with a ruptured disk, the injury was not caused by your job. If your condition is aggravated by work, you should have called off sick. According to your logic, I could sue my employer for WC for every day I have worked in the past 24 years.
  8. #8
    las365 is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    2,926
    If diagnostic testing was done before you returned to work that showed a ruptured disc in your back, and your doctor returned you to work without restrictions at a job that regularly requires you to lift 30-50 pound dies in awkward positions, I'm thinking it isn't the employer who is at fault (if any fault exists).

    I am not advocating a medical malpractice case. Surgeries fail. Things happen. And there may not be a way to see how much worse your condition is, if at all, because of the work you did during that time period. But an apparent failure to look at your diagnostic test results and a release to return to work without restrictions under the circumstances you describe seems questionable.
  9. #9
    Willlyjo Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by las365 View Post
    If diagnostic testing was done before you returned to work that showed a ruptured disc in your back, and your doctor returned you to work without restrictions at a job that regularly requires you to lift 30-50 pound dies in awkward positions, I'm thinking it isn't the employer who is at fault (if any fault exists).

    I am not advocating a medical malpractice case. Surgeries fail. Things happen. And there may not be a way to see how much worse your condition is, if at all, because of the work you did during that time period. But an apparent failure to look at your diagnostic test results and a release to return to work without restrictions under the circumstances you describe seems questionable.
    Just off the top of my head, I'm assuming Workers Compensation in Indiana is a "NO FAULT" insurance for injured workers as it is in California. If so, even if the doctor made a mistake in sending the OP back to work without restrictions, the OP can still file a claim based on the fact such work exacerbated his injury.

    I'm curious as to why the OP had a bulging disk in the first place. It may very well be that his work caused it. If there are no other reasons as to why the OP developed a bulge in his disk, he may very well be able to file a claim saying all his problems are work-related since it has been less than a year since his surgery. Also, since it is a continuous trauma type of injury, the OP can go back at least a year (maybe more) before his surgery to document his work habits as far as lifting. He should definitely consult a lawyer and protect his rights regarding this injury.

Similar Threads

  1. Texas case law on sealing civil case records?
    By smutlydog in forum Civil Litigation
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-01-2012, 03:12 PM
  2. Can a detective keep a case open even after a judge dismisses the case?
    By for1rican in forum Arrests, Searches, Warrants & Procedure
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-21-2009, 02:37 PM
  3. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-07-2004, 03:53 PM
  4. Case status: what does dismissed means and how can I expunge this case from my record
    By tato365 in forum Sentencing / Parole / Pardons / Plea Bargains
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 03-04-2004, 05:25 PM
  5. Is reasonable wear and tear determined on a case-by-case basis?
    By carolfreden in forum Other Real Estate Law Questions
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-06-2000, 07:07 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

© 1995-2012 Advice Company, All Rights Reserved

FreeAdvice® has been providing millions of consumers with outstanding advice, free, since 1995. While not a substitute for personal advice from a licensed professional, it is available AS IS, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms & Conditions Of Use.