Workers comp lower back settlements are based on many factors, legal and medical. The next series of blogs will outline the medical aspects of low back pain and their relationship to Wisconsin worker's compensation law.
Low back pain is one of the main reasons Americans visit their doctor. For adults over 40, it ranks third as a cause for doctor visits, after heart disease and arthritis. Eighty percent of people will have low back pain at some point in their lives. And nearly everyone who has low back pain once will have it again.
Very few people who feel pain in their low back have a serious medical problem. Ninety percent of people who experience low back pain for the first time get better in two to six weeks. Only rarely do people with low back pain develop chronic back problems. With these facts in mind, you can be assured that back pain is common, that it usually only causes problems for a short period of time.
The low back pain we are concerned with at McCormick Law Office in Milwaukee, Wisconsin is work-related low back pain that affects an injured worker's ability to work. Disabling work-related low back pain can come from a single, traumatic incident at work, causing immediate low back pain, perhaps shooting down a leg. Or, the low back pain can build up over time, from job duties involving repetitive lifting, bending, twisting and turning.
Some employees work many years with lower back pain and do not put in for a workers comp lower back settlement. If job duties over time cause low back disability so that an employee has to stop working or retire before he would have preferred, then he or she has a possible workers compensation claim. Even if the worker never reported a injury or told his employer or his doctor that his job caused his back pain, he may still have a case. At McCormick Law Office, we have experience in reviewing medical records and job descriptions to see if a man or woman's job duties over time caused the back disability. Permanent restrictions may entitle to money benefits for loss of earning capacity, retraining, permanent partial disability and other benefits. This has to be proven with a medical doctor determining causation and setting restrictions, and a vocational expert determining loss of earning capacity.