Work-related injuries can come in many shapes and sizes, and may even build up over time rather than occur in a single incident. In fact, repetitive stress injuries, such as bursitis or carpal tunnel syndrome, are among the most common work-related injuries, accounting for one out of every five on-the-job injuries in the country.
Unfortunately, many people assume that they cannot file a successful workers' compensation claim for a repetitive stress injury, because it is not always clear how or when their work caused it. In most cases, workers' compensation does not cover injuries a worker suffered previously, but repetitive stress injuries can qualify for compensation if a job aggravates an injury that the worker already had from another job. Unless state laws say that repetitive stress injuries are noncompensable, these injuries generally justify workers' compensation claims.
If you believe that you have a repetitive stress injury caused by your current job or aggravated by it, then you should consider filing a workers' compensation claim. Your injury deserves the proper treatment and you should receive compensation for lost income and any long-term loss of function caused by the injury. However, it is important to understand workers' compensation processes, which are often intentionally complicated and difficult to navigate.
If you do not know what to expect or how to protect your rights during the claim process, you may receive poor medical care and much less compensation than you should. Be sure to keep your own rights and priorities secure while you work to recover from your repetitive stress injury and put it behind you for good.