Aggravation of Preexisting Conditions for CTA Workers
Transportation workers face numerous dangers on the job, including violent attacks, crashes, collisions, and occupational illnesses. Unfortunately, in some cases, Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) employees have a medical condition or injury that flares up or is worsened by job conditions or a work-related accident. You might assume that you can’t recover benefits when you have a pre-existing condition, particularly if you received a denial of your workers’ compensation claim from CTA and its insurer. However, this is not true. If you believe you suffered an aggravation of a preexisting condition while you were on the job, you should contact the seasoned Chicago CTA worker attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. We seek the best remedies available and examine the circumstances of a client’s injuries to determine whether it would be appropriate to pursue other relief, such as a personal injury damages award or SSDI benefits, too.Aggravation of Preexisting Conditions
Our lawyers have seen a range of preexisting conditions in our clients’ workers’ compensation claims. Conditions that could pre-date your work injuries and be affected by them include back injuries, arthritis, degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, cardiovascular disease, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other medical issues. Your claim should not be denied on the grounds that you have a preexisting condition. Additionally, you are entitled to be covered by CTA’s workers’ compensation insurance from your very first day on the job. CTA and its insurer cannot deny your claim on the grounds that you haven’t worked for long enough to be covered or that you weren’t covered by the insurance because of your preexisting condition.
Our attorneys may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for you, to the extent that your preexisting injury or medical condition is aggravated or exacerbated by your CTA job conditions or tasks. We may be able to show a work-related aggravation if you experience an increase in your disability or need new treatment because of your job tasks or an accident. For example, if your disc herniation is worsened after you need to help a disabled passenger get onto the bus such that you can’t do your job as a bus driver for a month, you may be eligible for benefits. For another example, if you are in a train accident that results in brain damage and you already had a cognitive disability, you’d be able to obtain benefits for the brain damage in spite of the pre-existing cognitive disability. If you were doing a desk job for CTA and had some wrist pain ten years ago based on home improvement projects but wind up with carpal tunnel syndrome while typing for CTA, you should be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for the job-related carpal tunnel syndrome.Benefits
Workers’ compensation benefits are no-fault benefits. This means our lawyers will need to establish that your work with CTA is what aggravated your preexisting condition but will not need to prove CTA was at fault for them.
Benefits you may be able to obtain if your preexisting condition was aggravated by your job include reasonable and necessary medical care, permanent total disability benefits, temporary total disability benefits, permanent partial disability benefits, temporary partial disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation.Third Party Lawsuit
In addition to recovering benefits in a workers’ compensation claim, there are circumstances in which it might be appropriate to pursue damages in a third-party lawsuit for damages. For instance, if you had arthritis, but were in a crash, and as a result had a torn meniscus that required surgical repair, it might be appropriate to sue a negligent driver for damages in addition to pursuing workers’ compensation benefits.
To establish negligence, we would need to show it’s more likely than not: (1) the defendant owed you a duty to use reasonable care, (2) the defendant breached the duty to use reasonable care, (3) the breach caused the aggravation of your condition and (4) damages.Hire a Chicago Law Firm Who Represents Injured CTA Workers
If you find that your preexisting condition is exacerbated by your job with CTA, you should be able to obtain benefits. Our attorneys handle workers’ compensation claims in Champaign, Rockford, Quincy, and Aurora, as well as Sangamon, Winnebago, Kane, Cook, and Adams Counties. We also handle third party lawsuits and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims. Call us at 800-444-1525 or 312-263-6330 or complete our online form.