Obstacles In Filing a New Jersey Workers’ Comp Claim: Subsequent Injuries
Filing a successful workers’ compensation claim can be complicated. One major obstacle that your employer may place in your path when filing an otherwise valid claim is filing workers’ compensation for subsequent injuries. Where a subsequent injury is at issue, it is in your best interest to hire a New Jerseys’ compensation attorney to ensure that your rights are protected and you get the benefits to which you are entitled.
A subsequent injury case is when an employee’s pre-existing compensable workplace injury causes him to suffer another subsequent injury. Where a subsequent injury is at issue, the employee has a right to compensation if it is directly connected in a chain of physical causation with the compensable injury, even where the second injury is independent and not merely an aggravation of the compensable injury.
For example, you break your foot while walking to your desk at work. This is considered a workplace injury for which you may seek workers’ compensation. At a subsequent birthday party, while attempting to put out a fire, you trip over your cast and break your arm. The courts have ruled that if your New Jerseys’ compensation attorney can prove that you broke your arm as a result of tripping over your cast, which you were wearing due to a compensable injury, you may be entitle to additional workers comp benefits. In other words, your subsequent injury may be compensable because it is part of a chain of causation with the compensable broken foot injury.
However, if your employer can prove that a negligent act on your part broke the chain of causation, you will not be entitled to workers’ compensation.
For more information about proving causation when a subsequent injury is at issue, call New Jerseys’ compensation attorney Dan Matrafajlo at (908) 248-4404.