Will a pre-existing injury ruin my workers' comp claim?
Cathlyn Acker was a meat department employee at a Whole Foods Market. One day at work, she was carrying trays of chicken out of a walk-in cooler when her left foot got caught in some shelving. She ended up falling and landing on her right leg. She was diagnosed with an “extensive post-traumatic bone bruise” and a tear in her meniscus.
If Acker was hurt at work, why did Whole Foods deny her workers' comp claim? Well, less than a week earlier, she stepped in a hole in her backyard and twisted her left ankle. Whole Foods said that her injuries could have come from the incident at home.
One doctor testified that, even if the meniscus tear existed before Acker tripped at work, the work accident would have aggravated a pre-existing condition. Work injuries that aggravate a previous condition are compensable under workers' compensation law. On top of that, Whole Foods didn't present any medical testimony that contradicted Acker's evidence.
It was decided that Acker's work accident caused injuries to her right knee, left hip, and back. She was awarded medical compensation, wage compensation and temporary partial disability payments.
Have you been hurt in a NJ work accident? You may want to get in touch with a Morristown workman's comp lawyer. Manfred Ricciardelli has over 20 years of experience representing injured workers in New Jersey. He knows the ins and outs of these cases, and will help you get the benefits you and your family need. Contact us today at 973-285-1100 to schedule a free consultation.
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