Broken bones affect individuals of all ages and occupations, and each year some employees suffer fractures while performing the duties of their job. A broken bone can be a severe injury that not only leaves you in extreme pain but also renders you unable to earn a living. The Orange County work injury lawyers at the Law Office of Joseph Richards are well-versed in the workers’ compensation laws of California, and we can anticipate and address any obstacles that you may face in filing a workers’ compensation claim due to a broken bone. We can advocate aggressively on your behalf to assist you in obtaining the medical treatment and other workers’ compensation benefits that you are owed. We have an office in Orange County and a second location in Riverside County, from which we can guide workers throughout Southern California.Types of Broken Bones
A broken bone is commonly known as a fracture. The circumstances under which employees sustain fractures range from the obvious, such as car accidents and slip and falls, to the less obvious, such as a fracture that occurs due to repeated exposure to a certain condition.
The types of fractures sustained in the workplace vary as well. A fracture may be partial, in which the break is incomplete, or complete, in which the bone is actually broken into two pieces. A stress or hairline fracture is similar to a crack. A compression fracture is a specific type of fracture that occurs in the back when the vertebrae collapse. A fracture can also be open or closed. In a closed fracture, the bone is broken, but the fracture is not visible from the outside, while in a compound fracture, the broken bone actually breaks open the skin. Compound fractures have an increased risk of infection.Recovering Benefits After a Workplace Fracture
Unlike some injuries, such as a soft tissue injury or psychological distress, broken bones are an easily provable injury that is generally diagnosed via an x-ray, and if necessary, a CT scan or MRI. As a result, if your fracture occurred due to a specific workplace accident, your workers’ compensation claim should not be disputed. While some broken bones, such as compound fractures, are easy to diagnose even without an x-ray, others like hairline fractures can be difficult to diagnose and may require more advanced imaging studies.
If you suffered a fracture caused by continued physical stress or exposure to a damaging condition, such as a compression fracture, you will likely need to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that your fracture was in fact caused by your workplace environment rather than some other condition or incident. In other words, you will need to show that your injury was more likely than not caused by conditions to which you were exposed at work. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can anticipate any defenses that your employer’s workers’ compensation carrier may set forth to try to deny your claim.
The benefits that you are able to recover following a workplace fracture depend on the severity and permanency of your injury and the treatment that is necessary to help you recover. You will most likely be entitled to the cost of any medical treatment, as well as reimbursement for the cost of transportation to and from treatment. Treatment for fractures can include casting, surgery, an orthopedic brace, prescription medication, and physical therapy. You may also be entitled to disability benefits, which can be either temporary or permanent. Temporary disability benefits provide a portion of your pre-injury wage during the time that you are unable to work or limited in your ability to work, and they can last for up to two years. Permanent disability benefits are paid when you are unable to work or limited in your ability to work for a longer period. The amount of permanent disability benefits to which you are entitled depends on your permanent disability rating, which is an assessment of the permanency of your injury based on certain criteria.Schedule a Consultation with a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer in Orange County
At the Law Office of Joseph Richards, we know how frustrating it can be to be unable to work following broken bones in the workplace, and we diligently pursue workers’ compensation benefits on behalf of our clients. We have an office in Orange County and an office in Riverside County, and we regularly represent people seeking benefits in cities such as Santa Ana, Costa Mesa, Anaheim, Irvine, Moreno Valley, Corona, Temecula, El Centro, Long Beach, San Bernardino, Fontana, Rancho Cucamonga, and San Diego. We also represent injured employees and the families of victims killed in fatal workplace accidents elsewhere in Orange, Riverside, Imperial, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and San Diego Counties. Contact us at (844) 562-2667 or via our online form to set up a consultation with an attorney.