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Can I sue for damages from workers comp case

Tucson, AZ |

I got sick at work from something either in the vents or used to clean on 9/10. I broke out in a severe rash all over my body with open sores. After seeing a doctor and dermatologist several times, my family doctor advised me on 1/30/09 not to return to work for my ultimate safety. This was after telling my boss my concerns 6 times, showing her my open sores and being taken home twice by my husband. Between that and using 7 sick days. I have now been out of work with 1/3 pay for 11 days on workers comp.

I am now told that my collagen vascular disease may be permanent. Must I go back to work on their doctor's say and do I have a civil case for negligence?

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Attorney answers 1


n cases based upon tort liability or the common law of negligence, successful plaintiffs can recover damages for inconvenience and suffering. The law even allows for payments to be made to family members who have experienced emotional distress in connection with injuries which have been sustained by their loved ones. There are several direct costs which arise from accidental injury or death under the tort system. These include wage losses suffered by the victim, cost of medical care and rehabilitation, pain and suffering imposed on the victim and on people closely related to him, and damages to physical property, among others. The Workers' Compensation System provides no benefits for any inconvenience and suffering sustained by the injured worker as a result of his traumatic injury or occupational exposure. Any emotional component to a particular injury or disease must be accompanied by objective psychiatric findings in order to be considered compensable. The Workers' Compensation System has a long history of compensability for mental and nervous disorders. In one case, an employee was genuinely obsessed with the notion that he had cancer of the back despite the lack of evidence regarding this cancer. Since the emotional fear was not present prior to a work-related accident, it was found to be compensable. In another instance, a claimant who had been under tension at work because of her inability to work up to the efficiency rate of the department, and whose hypertensive condition was affected and aggravated by the tension she was experiencing at work was successful in a claim for workers' compensation benefits because it was found that her work effort contributed in a material degree to the onset of a stroke, subsequently suffered by her.

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