Back injuries are recognized as a work-related injury which should entitle you to Workers’ Compensation benefits. Back injuries can be from a) gradual stress – your back just wearing out because of overuse or, b) from a trauma such as lifting, vehicle accidents, falling or tripping. If the back injury happens while you are working or on your employer’s property, it is likely an injury that your employer’s insurance company should accept under Maine Workers’ Compensation law.
Back injuries are the second most common work injury, and should entitle you to Workers’ Compensation benefits.
If you are injured at work you must inform your employer within 30 days of the date of your injury. Report ALL injuries, not just those that your employer thinks are serious.
Your employer will then report the injury to their insurance company. The insurance company will decide whether to pay you, on a voluntary basis, a portion of your lost wages and medical expenses related to your work injury.
Back injuries are among the most serious and life-changing of all work-related accidents. All too often back injuries result in herniated or “slipped” discs which cause your spinal cord to become compressed. This can result in severe back pain and numbness or tingling in your hands, arms, legs or feet. It is especially important to get medical advice that you trust when dealing with a back injury.
Employers, and the medical practices that they direct you to, often simply tell you that your injurly is merely a strain. They then recommend physical therapy or exercises, tell you that you should be fine, and send you back to work. We have had many clients who have received these quick diagnoses from the employer’s favorite medical provider, only to find out that their injury was far more serious and should have received innediate diagnostic testing as well as a referral to a surgeon.
Employers and insurance companies often fight back injury claims, arguing that some activity other than work caused your back injury or that it was a pre-existing condition. Insurers and employers do not want to pay you Workers’ Compensation benefits and will search for any excuse to deny your claim. Often a worker with a back injury needs a lawyer in order to gain wage and medical benefits.
The lawyers at Irwin & Morris have successfully represented clients from many different occupations to recover lost wages, provide payment for medical bills, and sometimes receive substantial settlements through separate personal injury suits. These occupations include, construction workers, firefighters, health care workers and CNAs, landscapers, warehouse workers, iron workers, movers, heavy machinery operators, mechanics, social workers, truck drivers, chefs, servers and restaurant staff, and retail sales workers. Give us a call or send us an email on our contact page and we will answer any question or concern you may have – free of charge.