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Back Injuries On & Off The Job

Back Injuries On & Off The Job

Discuss Your Case With A Workers Compensation Lawyer Indy

Back injuries are some of the most common to be sustained on the job, but many also happen at home or out having fun. In Indiana and most states, back pain is the most common cause of job-related disability, and as many as 80 percent of all adults will experience low back pain at some point in their lives. Regardless of where you sustained your injury, though, you may be entitled to compensation if your injury is the result of someone else’s negligence.

Workers’ Compensation & Back Injuries

Back injuries are very common at work, especially in hands-on fields such as construction. If you injure your back on the job, though, it can be difficult to obtain the compensation you may be entitled to, simply because back injuries may not be visible without significant testing, and employers do not necessarily want to pay for injuries they cannot see. Time is often of the essence, especially in dealing with employers, because there is a time limit within which workers’ compensation claims must be filed – in Indiana, an accident must be reported no more than 30 days from the date it happened.

If you are injured on the job, your medical records will be key, as well as the testimony of any witnesses. The more information you have, the better, as your employer or their insurance company may attempt to state that your injury is a result of a pre-existing condition. Workers’ compensation has to pay for a pre-existing condition being aggravated on the job by an accident, but if a condition or problem simply gets worse, your employer is not liable.

Back Injuries Off The Clock

Like any other personal injury that happens off the clock, many back injuries can be imputed to another person’s negligence. If you have been hurt by someone else’s recklessness, you must be able to prove specific criteria under Indiana law: namely, that you were owed a duty of care by the defendant (for example, a motorist owes a general duty of care to pedestrians to refrain from putting them in harm’s way); that duty was breached; and you suffered harm as a direct result of the defendant’s actions (or non-actions, depending on the situation).

One important thing to remember about back injuries in this context is that while the normal system under which verdicts are determined is comparative negligence (that is, the doctrine that a plaintiff may recover if they are less than 50 percent at fault for their injuries), there are two areas of Indiana law where it does not apply: under the Indiana Tort Claims Act, and in cases dealing with medical malpractice. This means that if your back injury was allegedly caused by medical malpractice, you may have a far lower chance to succeed in your suit, because contributory negligence applies in malpractice cases. Contributory negligence is a doctrine that states that if a plaintiff is even 1 percent at fault in an accident or mistake, they are barred from all recovery.

Ask An Experienced Attorney

Given how common back injuries are in the U.S. today, one might think it would be easy to prove negligence in causing one, but this is just not the case. A knowledgeable back injury attorney can make a big difference, and consulting one immediately after an injury is generally a good idea. If you have sustained a back injury (either on or off the job) due to another’s negligence, the skilled Indianapolis back injury attorneys at Holland & Holland can help guide you through the process of seeking compensation. Contact us today via phone or our website to set up an initial consultation.

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