Have you been diagnosed with an illness you believe was caused by your job or work environment? A Los Angeles workers’ compensation attorney at our firm may be able to help you. At Pacific Attorney Group, we help injured and ill workers seekbenefits and medical care under the California workers’ compensation system. Representing workers with occupational diseases is an important part of our practice, and we are committed to helping workers get the support they need.
An occupational disease may be defined as a medical condition that arises as the result of one’s occupation. Some examples are mesothelioma, silicosis and carpal tunnel syndrome. The work environment and/or duties performed may contribute to the development of an illness, disease or disorder. A worker may be exposed to toxic materials while on the job or may perform duties that put strain on certain parts of the body. The worker may then develop a medical condition that requires medical attention and ongoing care. The condition may interfere with the worker’s ability to perform his or her job duties or may even be life-threatening.
The majority of occupational diseases are caused by exposure to harmful agents, substances that are hazardous to our health. This may include asbestos, lead, radiation, benzene, pesticides, viruses and other chemicals or biological substances. Most occupational diseases result from inhaled gases, particulates, vapors or liquids. In other cases, agents may be ingested or introduced into the body through touch.
Exposure alone is just one aspect of the cause of occupational disease. A number of other factors will come into play, including personal habits (like smoking cigarettes or refusing to wear protective gear), work history, susceptibility and general health. Occupational diseases can also be traced to accidents and disasters, like a plant explosion that exposes hundreds of workers to radiation, or a situation like the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that left the World Trade Center a pile of rubble and released dangerous gases, particulates and other materials into the environment.
As workers’ compensation attorneys, we handle occupational disease claims for:
If you are suffering from any of these conditions or have been diagnosed with any illness or disease that is work-related, you may be entitled to benefits.
Occupational diseases are preventable. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and their state counterparts work to reduce the occurrence of work-related diseases by creating and enforcing workplace safety regulations, but workers continue to fall ill. Until occupational diseases are a thing of the past, we must fight for the rights of employees to safe working conditions. We also must seek workers’ compensation benefits and other compensation (when applicable) to help ill workers face more stable futures.
Now is the time to find out what rights and options you have if diagnosed with an occupational disease. You only have 30 days from the date of your diagnosis or your suspicion that your illness is work-related to inform your employer and file a claim.Contact a Los Angeles workers’ compensation lawyer at our firm to get started.
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