Injuries sustained in one-time accidents are not the only ways in which a worker can suffer harm while performing his or her job duties. In fact, many injuries and illnesses can develop over a span of time as a result of performing repetitive tasks or even from exposure to toxic chemicals. Being exposed to a seriously hazardous substance even one time can inflict serious damage on the body and, if this happened to you, you have the right to pursue workers’ compensation benefits.
Once you know for certain that you were harmed by toxic chemicals at your place of work, formally report this to your employer as soon as possible and begin the process of filing for workers’ compensation.
Different Types of Toxic Exposure
There are many different types of hazardous chemicals a person can be exposed to on the job, though some are much more common than others. Among the more frequently encountered toxic substances are asbestos, benzene, lead, mercury, chloroform, ammonia, arsenic, uranium, iodine, formaldehyde, and hydrogen peroxide. Toxins like asbestos, which is known for causing mesothelioma, an aggressive and fatal form of cancer, can potentially complicate your claim, and often involves unique legal issues that require the assistance of an attorney who is experienced in handling such cases.
Precautions Do Not Invalidate Your Claim
Not all employers negligently expose their employees to toxic chemicals, but just because your employer took the proper precautions to prevent accidents from occurring does not mean you no longer have a valid workers’ compensation claim. Remember, the workers’ compensation system is not based on fault. As long as you sustained a work-related injury, you have a right to these important benefits.
What to Do Next?
If you suspect you were exposed to toxic chemicals at work, see your doctor as soon as possible. He or she will examine you and might even be able to refer you to a specialist with experience and training in evaluating workers who suffer toxic exposure. Once it is determined that you indeed developed an illness or condition that was caused by chemical exposure at work, notify your employer as soon as possible to get the ball rolling on your workers’ compensation claim. Additionally, you should consider involving a workers’ compensation attorney since cases involving toxic exposure are often more complex and could require the assistance of toxic chemical experts who will perform sampling and testing to strengthen your case. The sooner you seek legal help, the better.
Your workers’ compensation benefits will depend on the circumstances of your case, but you will likely be eligible to receive temporary disability benefits to compensate for any loss of income you suffer while receiving treatment or permanent disability for completely bodily impairment, and coverage of your medical treatment expenses.
Workers’ Compensation Attorneys in Santa Ana
If you suffered an injury or developed a harmful condition as a result of toxic exposure in the workplace, it is imperative that you seek legal representation to ensure you are able to receive the worker’s compensation benefits you are entitled to. At Ufkes & Bright, our Santa Ana workers’ compensation attorneys are able to provide personalized attention and big firm results.
Get started on your case today and call Ufkes & Bright at (714) 909-2609 to schedule your free initial case evaluation with a workers’ compensation attorney.