Workers' Compensation and Preexisting Conditions
Workers’ compensation in Minnesota is designed to provide benefits to employees who are injured on the job, regardless of whether they have preexisting medical conditions. However, it can be more challenging to receive workers’ compensation benefits if you have a preexisting condition.
Here’s what you need to know about Minnesota workers’ compensation and preexisting conditions.
- If your work injury is a “substantial contributing factor” and has aggravated or accelerated your current condition, it is covered under work compensation, and you should contact our attorneys today.
- Your employer or their insurance carrier must prove that the pre-existing condition contributed to the current injury or illness you’re filing for.
- If your pre-existing condition is related to a prior occupational condition, there is potential for an apportionment of liability between the prior injury(ies) and the current one.
- It will be important for your treating providers to be able to confirm that a permanent aggravation of a pre-existing condition occurred.
What Is a Preexisting Condition?
A preexisting condition is any medical condition, illness, or injury that an employee has prior to starting work for their current employer. If you sustained an injury or illness at work that has aggravated or accelerated your current condition, it is important to consult with one of our workers’ compensation attorneys to explore your options for coverage.
Do I Qualify for Workers' Comp with My Preexisting Condition?
If you or a loved one has a preexisting condition, follow these steps to ensure that you may still qualify for coverage in the event of a work injury:
Step 1: If your preexisting condition affects your ability to perform the essential physical duties of your job, you should advise your employer of any restrictions you may have in this regard at the time of hire.
Step 2: If you become hurt, seek immediate medical treatment to ensure your injury/illness is properly diagnosed and there is a record of its extent.
Step 3: Consult with an experienced Minnesota workers’ compensation attorney to help you navigate the claim process and ensure your rights are protected.
As mentioned, it will be important for your treating providers to be able to establish whether a permanent aggravation of a pre-existing condition occurred, so obtaining your medical records after the injury will be critical.
How to File a Claim
Workers' Comp Checklist
Workers who have a preexisting condition should report the condition to their employer at the time of hire or as soon as possible after the injury or illness occurs. This can help ensure that the workers’ compensation insurance carrier has all of the relevant information when evaluating the claim.
If you have a preexisting condition and are injured on the job, it’s important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. This can help ensure that your injury or illness is properly diagnosed and treated, and can also help establish a clear record of the extent of your injury or illness.
- Step 1: Report your injury to your employer immediately. If you need treatment first, report your injury to your employer as soon as you can.
- Step 2: Contact Meshbesher & Spence to get advice on what to expect with your claim and how to handle communication with your employer and insurer.
- Step 3: eek medical treatment with a doctor of your choice and follow your doctor’s orders and medical instructions.
- Step 4: Provide your employer a copy with any work restrictions you receive from your doctor immediately.
As your trusted advocate, we will advise you as to whether it makes sense to retain an attorney at that time or if you can wait.
Filing for Workers' Comp with a Preexisting Condition?
You Are Not Alone.
Navigating Minnesota’s workers’ compensation dispute process can be difficult due to its complexity and numerous rules and procedures. Therefore, working with an attorney to help you follow all guidelines to safeguard your rights and obtain the benefits you deserve is crucial.
If you have a preexisting condition, having questions or feeling isolated in your fight is normal. However, at Meshbesher & Spence, we offer unwavering support during the entire process and will represent you if your claim is denied. We’ll also update you on new laws affecting your coverage and how to refile.