Many workers in California take for granted that they have protection from injury-related expenses if they get hurt at work. In California, employers typically need to offer workers’ compensation coverage to their employees even if a worker just started in a low-risk position or only performs part-time work for the company.
If someone develops a medical condition related to their work, they can file a claim for benefits. Workers’ compensation benefits can help pay for treatment costs when someone gets hurt and may also provide disability benefits. Workers who require a leave of absence or who must move to lower-paying jobs can rely on disability benefits to replace some of their lost wages.
Certain workers in California are less confident about their eligibility for benefits than others. For example, workers who have pre-existing medical conditions sometimes wonder whether they qualify for workers’ compensation coverage. In some cases, those with pre-existing conditions are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
When do workers qualify for help with pre-existing conditions?
Pre-existing conditions can be a challenge for workers to properly address. If their condition remains static or unchanging, then they most likely do not qualify for workers’ compensation benefits to help with their treatment costs and lost wages.
However, if the worker’s condition worsens because of their employment, then they may be eligible for benefits. The more documentation someone has about their symptoms and how they progressed throughout their employment, the better their chances of successfully filing a benefits claim. The more direct the correlation between their condition and their job responsibilities, the easier it may be for them to show that their work led to their condition deteriorating.
In some cases, a worker may need to undergo an in-depth examination because their employer questions their eligibility and how much impact their job may have had on their symptoms. Workers’ compensation can cover the cost of an evaluation intended to prove whether or not someone’s work worsened a medical issue they had before beginning their job.
Those with pre-existing conditions may need assistance as they attempt to navigate the workers’ compensation claims process or pursue an appeal. Getting help with complicated workers’ compensation matters may benefit those temporarily struggling to work because of a worsening pre-existing condition.