In Ohio, how do I show my job is worsening an existing condition?

Sponsored Answer
Jerald A. Schneiberg - Workers' Compensation - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Jerald A. Schneiberg

Located in Euclid, OHNager, Romaine & Schneiberg Co., L.P.A.

Euclid, OH
Phone: 800-743-2797
Fax: 216-289-4743

View Profile

Ohio employees are fortunate in that the state’s workers’ compensation system recognizes “substantially aggravated” pre-existing conditions as a category of work injury. You can make a claim based upon your work duties aggravating an existing condition, but the proof of injury must be measurable and objective. You cannot just report that you are experiencing more pain and additional symptoms than previously.

Some forms of objective medical evidence that could help your case include:

  • Diagnostic findings
  • Test results
  • Clinical findings

It’s important that these forms of evidence be precise to rule out the possibility that they simply establish a pre-existing condition (which is not covered by workers’ comp), rather than one that has been substantially aggravated by on-the-job duties. Test results need to be compared to pre-injury results, when available. Imaging documents such as MRIs are not effective in a claim without a clinical explanation or a previous MRI to compare it to. And a note from a physician — even a specialist — asserting that a client’s injury is due to substantial aggravation of a pre-existing condition may not be accepted as valid medical evidence.

Another way in which pre-existing conditions are recognized within the state’s workers’ comp system is through their impact on a separate injury. Let’s say you had diabetes as a pre-existing condition. Your work injury required surgery, and the diabetes was interfering with the healing from the surgery for your injury. In that case, the state would consider the diabetes a “co-morbidity condition” and provide benefits to treat it during the time period that you are recovering from your injury. Once you are considered ready to go back to work, benefits for the diabetic treatment would also cease.

It is important to have a skilled workers’ compensation attorney at your side throughout a claim involving a substantially aggravated pre-existing condition. If you are injured repeatedly over time (several different years, let’s say), and the injury impacts the same parts of the body, your employer may try to claim that you have a pre-existing condition that is not covered by workers’ comp or that your injury should be considered part of your original claim (which would substantially reduce its worth). An experienced workers’ comp lawyer will help you gather the medical evidence to demonstrate whether the claim is truly a new injury or is a documented aggravation of a pre-existing condition.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

Other Answers By Jerald A. Schneiberg

Photo of Jerald A. Schneiberg

What rights do I have in Ohio if my baby suffered a broken bone during birth?

Broken bones attributed to childbirth injuries are more common than you think, but they shouldn’t be. You entrusted the birth of your child to …

Sponsored answer by Jerald A. Schneiberg

Photo of Jerald A. Schneiberg

Do I face any risks if I speak to an Ohio workers’ comp lawyer?

If you are referring to legal risks you might incur by speaking with an attorney after being injured on the job, the answer is no. However, it is …

Sponsored answer by Jerald A. Schneiberg

Photo of Jerald A. Schneiberg

Are there penalties if I refuse an Ohio insurance company’s offer?

If you have been injured in a car accident, through a mishap on someone else’s property or through a defective product, you will most likely …

Sponsored answer by Jerald A. Schneiberg

Other Answers About Workers' Compensation

Photo of Michael J. Epstein

Do I Need A Lawyer For A Workers’ Compensation Case In New Jersey?

After an injury at work, you may have several concerns. You may wonder how to obtain medical care and who will pay for it, how you will be paid while …

Sponsored answer by Michael J. Epstein

Photo of Frederick E. Kaiser

What Types Of Benefits Can I Recover Under Minnesota Workers’ Compensation?

Many people are unaware of the types of benefits recoverable under Minnesota’s worker’s compensation programs. These programs are meant …

Sponsored answer by Frederick E. Kaiser

Photo of Philip J. Fulton

What If I Receive Notice Of Terminated Workers’ Compensation Benefits In Ohio?

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (OBWC) is generally the governing body through which most injured workers in Ohio are paid benefits …

Sponsored answer by Philip J. Fulton

Call Me

To: Jerald A. Schneiberg

Super Lawyers: Potential Client Inquiry

Disclaimer »
Privacy Policy »
*Required fields
Page Generated: 0.68183493614197 sec