Workers’ compensation laws can be tricky to understand. They vary by state, they’re complicated, and at first glance, they can seem overwhelming. Workers’ compensations laws are put into place to help you get the help that you need when you’ve suffered from a workplace injury, regardless of if it was your fault or your employer’s.
However, not every work injury is covered under workers’ compensation.
First, only injuries that are qualified as “accidents” are covered under North Carolina workers’ compensation law. This means that when you get hurt, your injury needs to have been caused by something unexpected and out of the ordinary work routine.
Second, your injury must occur at your workplace or as a result of your job.
Third, your injury must be a result of your workplace environment or the work you were performing. For example, if you faint and fall off a scaffold at work because you forgot to take your blood sugar medication, the accident will be attributed to your pre-existing condition and will not be covered under workers’ compensation.
The only types of injuries in North Carolina workers’ compensation law that follow a slightly different set of rules are back injuries. In N.C., back injuries are not required to be “accidents” to be covered under workers’ compensation. They are only required to have happened as a result of a “specific traumatic event.” A specific traumatic event is something that hurts you but was not necessarily due to an “accident.”
For example, you hurt your back when lifting or pushing something heavy or picking up something from the floor which is part of what you do for your work daily. In these cases, your back injury, even though it was not the result of an “accident,” is covered under workers’ compensation.
Of course, back injuries that do happen as a result of an accident at work are covered; however, you must be able to pinpoint the specific date and time of the accident. Please be aware, your back injury is NOT covered under workers’ compensation if it is has gradually progressed over time.
At Shankle Law Firm, we are dedicated to helping you understand the process that is workers’ compensation. For more information, contact Shankle Law Firm at 704-370-1212. We will be pleased to arrange a free consultation with owner / lawyer, Maggie Shankle. Allow Shankle Law Firm to provide you with the legal advocacy, care, and compassion you deserve.