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Can a Pre-Existing Injury Affect My Workers’ Compensation Claim?

Posted on July 13, 2022 in

When a person sustains an injury at work, there should be able to recover compensation. Just about every employee in Colorado is covered through workers’ compensation insurance that should pay for their medical bills and a significant portion of their lost wages if they cannot work. However, what if a person has a pre-existing injury? Can this prevent them from recovering workers’ compensation insurance?

Understanding Pre-Existing Injuries and How This Affects New Workplace Injury Claims

The vast majority of individuals have sustained an injury at some point in their lifetime. Whether that includes injuries caused by a vehicle accident, a slip and fall incident, or some type of internal medical issue that leads to a surgery, injuries happen.

Unfortunately, pre-existing injuries also have a way of coming back to haunt individuals if they sustain new injuries and they expect an insurance settlement to help cover their expenses. Insurance carriers do anything they can to limit how much compensation they pay to claimants, in one way they do this is by examining The claimant’s pre-existing injuries. The idea here is that if the insurance carrier can show that the claimant’s current pain and suffering were caused by something other than the current incident, they will pay less or even not have to pay for the claim at all.

What you need to know is that nearly every employer in Colorado is required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance should cover a worker’s medical bills and a significant portion of their lost wages for any injury that occurs while they are performing job-related duties. Even if a person has a pre-existing injury, this absolutely should not affect their ability to recover compensation for a new job-related injury.

Additionally, workers’ compensation insurance is a no-fault system, which means individuals can recover compensation regardless of who caused the injury, even if they caused it themselves.

What if a Pre-Existing Injury is Worsened by the Workplace Injury?

There are some situations where incidents in the workplace can aggravate pre-existing injuries that a person has. Again, this should not affect whether or not a person is able to recover workers’ compensation insurance for any new medical bills that arise or lost wages if they are unable to work.

If a job-related injury aggravates a pre-existing injury, we have to examine it from the view that the aggravation of the injury would not have occurred if not for the current workplace incident. Even if a person was still undergoing treatment for a pre-existing injury and that injury became worse as a result of the new incident, they should still be able to recover compensation for their losses.

Speak With a Workers’ Compensation Attorney

If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a job-related incident but you have a pre-existing injury that the insurance carrier is trying to bring up, you need to speak to an attorney immediately. Your pre-existing injuries should have no bearing on a current workplace injury claim, and an attorney will be your advocate. Your Denver workers compensation lawyer will understand the law, and they will make sure that your insurance carrier and your employer follow the law when it comes to paying compensation for your workplace injury claim.