For the most part, people have been led to believe that stress is an acceptable part of life. The thing is, many people have to deal with stress at home, on the streets, and even at work. In that case, it becomes all-encompassing. There isn’t much to say about getting contributions for stress at home.
But, stress at work can lead employees down a rabbit hole all the way to psychological injury. The thing is, most employers and insurers will fight these claims to the point of frustration.
Nevertheless, with the right Philadelphia workers’ comp lawyers, you can benefit from compensation laws targeted at work-related stress.
What is ‘mental injury ‘under Pennsylvania law?
For the most part, each state has its own worker’s compensation system in place. When it comes to mental health injury in Pennsylvania, there are three areas that are commonly referred to.
You will find that the concept of mental-mental injury is still foreign to a handful of states. Nevertheless, Pennsylvania recognizes it. In essence, this type of injury develops when there is some sort of traumatic event at the office. For instance, if a colleague dies right in front of you, or there is a bomb explosion at the office. At the end of the day, these events can be the root of extreme cases of anxiety, considering you have to return to the scene.
Here, the mental trauma has to be tied to a physical event. For instance, if there is an assault in the workplace, or you are injured at the office, this may leave a mental imprint. This further leads to anxiety, making the office a difficult place to function.
In this case, there is still some sort of tangible sign of stress, but it comes as a result of mental stress. For instance, being loaded with unfamiliar and difficult responsibilities mounts pressure on some individuals. The pressure may further manifest itself as anything from a stomach ache to a full-blown heart attack.
Examples of mental injury
Common types of mental injury include:
Post traumatic stress disorder
This form of mental energy is not just common among war veterans. Anyone who has been exposed to a traumatic event can develop this condition. The truth is that extreme reactions to stress have been recognized for centuries. So, it is not unusual for a particularly stressful event in the workplace to trigger PTSD.
Some incidents that may lead to PTSD in the workplace include continuous harassment and bullying. Also, exposure to dangerous situations at work can trigger extreme distress.
Other anxiety disorders
This is a wide umbrella, considering PTSD also falls under this category. Additionally, panic attacks, social phobia, or phobias related to specific objects are all anxiety disorders. Mental injuries developed in the workplace may manifest themselves in any of these ways.
For instance, if there was a printer-related accident in the office, some individuals may develop an irrational fear of printers. In some cases, the thought of working with problematic customers may offset panic attacks.
Mood disorders are mental health conditions that directly affect a person’s mood. Under this category, there are cyclothymic, bipolar, and even depressive disorders. Sure, there are many factors that contribute to these conditions. Nevertheless, individuals can become severely depressed due to workplace conditions.
Job insecurity is enough to send most people on a downward spiral. Likewise, depression has been identified as a long-term risk of shiftwork.
Who Is Eligible For Mental Injury Claims?
In Pennsylvania, the law stipulates that any establishment or individual with more than one employee is mandated to adopt the workers’ compensation system. Nevertheless, it is no walk in the park to assess these compensations. It is slightly easier to navigate when there is a tangible injury resulting in mental stress.
Otherwise, workers within the state will be required to provide evidence that their distress is work-related. It is no easy feat, which is why specialized legal representation is important in these cases.
How do I file a claim for mental injury in PA?
As earlier mentioned, employers and insurers typically fight against mental injury claims. For good reason too, since mental injury cases are not easy to prove. Nevertheless, there are a few procedures that can solidify your claim.
Familiarize yourself with your organization’s procedures
Every organization has set procedures on how to handle workers’ compensation claims. Start by getting acquainted with the laid down procedures in your workplace. This will ensure that you do not end up implicating yourself further down the line.
Ensure that you make an official claim
Officially making your intentions known is imperative in this case. In fact, it is an integral part of the process within most organizations. Once your claim has been officially filed, it is admissible in court and can serve as tangible evidence.
Make an informal claim
Speak to someone you trust in the office. This is not your usual water cooler conversation, it can also serve as evidence down the line.
Contact a medical professional
You will need to have medical science backing you. So, some corroboration from a medical professional goes a long way.
Once all this is done, it is advisable to get some legal perspective from a professional. Call us today for a free consultation!
Implications Of Work-related Stress
Distress of any kind will eventually take its toll on the body. It may lead to physical disorders, ulcers, heart conditions, or asthma. Even more, it may trigger and aggravate pre-existing conditions. If you are experiencing work-related stress, it is advisable to address it.
Let Us Assist You With Your Claim
As mentioned earlier, stress has become such an integral part of everyday life that people refuse to address it. But, there are adverse effects related to continuous exposure. Considering most people spend more time at work than at home, it is easy to spiral. On that note, let us assist you with your claim.
With the details aligned, our certified Philadelphia injury lawyers can help you build a strong case while working to ensure you achieve favorable results.