Category Archives: q a mondays

Does A Pre-Existing Injury Mean I Can't File A Claim?

A preexisting injury does not stop a claim

Today’s post comes from guest author Matthew Funk from Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano.

The same rules hold true in Wisconsin. An employer takes an employee “as is”; if a work injury aggravates a pre-existing condition beyond its normal progression, a worker can bring a worker’s compensation claim.

QUESTION: I HAVE A PREEXISTING INJURY TO THE SAME BODY PART I HURT AT WORK. DOES THIS MEAN I CANNOT CLAIM WORKERS COMPENSATION BENEFITS?

ANSWER: A PREEXISTING INJURY DOES NOT STOP A CLAIM.  FILE THAT CLAIM!    

Joe Worker was a high school quarterback.  Until that knee injury sidelined his dreams of playing for the NFL.  So he became one of the best construction workers New York City could ask for.  Until one day, on the job, Joe tripped over stuff somebody should have put away, and landed on that bad knee. Now, if his knee hadn’t been so screwed up in the first place, Joe would have been fine.  He would have dusted himself off and gone on with the day.  But the old injury flared up and Joe was sidelined again.  Joe didn’t know what to do.  It was, after all, his bad knee that made things worse, not a minor trip and fall on the job.  So he hesitated filing a new claim.  What should he do?

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Do I Need To Miss Work To Have A Claim?

Today’s post comes from guest author Matthew Funk from Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano. In Wisconsin, a doctor’s assessment of permanent partial disability triggers permanency benefit payments.

QUESTION: WHEN I GOT HURT, I DID NOT LOSE ANY TIME FROM WORK. SHOULD I BOTHER TO FILE A WORKERS COMPENSATION CLAIM?

ANSWER: LOST TIME IS NOT A REQUIREMENT TO FILE A CLAIM

Joe was working a plumbing job at a construction site. He was tightening a connection to an S pipe when the wrench slipped and so did his wrist. Lucky for him, it was only a fracture. The ER was quiet and empty and two hours Joe was back on site, supervising Mike on pipe installation and making sure the job got done. Sure he would have to do some physical therapy on his wrist but that would happen on the weekends. He wouldn’t lose a day of work as he healed.

As he and Mike finished up their day’s work, Mike mentioned to Joe that he should file a Workers’ Comp claim. “But why?” asked Joe. “I was only gone for two hours and the physical therapy will happen on Saturday. Don’t you have to be out for like weeks to file a claim? Nah… I’m not going to file.”

File, Joe! File!! You don’t have to miss a day of work in order to file a successful claim. Continue reading