The life changes that result from experiencing PTSD are very real and can be equally debilitating. For those who suffer from PTSD, continuing to work and function on a daily basis can be a tremendous challenge. Under such circumstances, a person suffering from PTSD can receive monetary compensation. But first, several factors must be considered.
What is PTSD?
PTSD, or post-traumatic stress syndrome, can be a physical, emotional and psychological response to an ongoing trauma suffered as the result of various types of abuse, including workplace abuse and domestic abuse as well as trauma suffered as a result of a motor vehicle accident or another type of unexpected accident.
Symptoms of PTSD
There are many and varied symptoms a person experiencing PTDS can exhibit. Some of these symptoms include, but are not limited to, the following;
- Panic attacks
- Fear of going out in public
- Obsessive Compulsive Behaviors
- Memory loss and/or difficulty concentrating
Experiencing any of these symptoms as a result of PTSD requires some type of medical and/or mental health intervention to help reduce these symptoms and restore balance to the sufferer’s daily life.
Causes of PTSD/At Risk Employments
PTSD can be caused by many circumstances. Very often the circumstances include repetitive trauma such as verbal and/or physical abuse at work or at home. Other times PTSD is caused by a single traumatic incident like a car accident, surgery, or witnessing a natural disaster or harm coming to others.
At-risk careers for experiencing PTSD tend to be those in the helping professions, such as health care workers, policemen, firefighters, and paramedics. Oftentimes, PTSD is experienced by these professionals, in particular, due to the nature of responding to emergent situations on a regular basis.
What Types of PTSD are Compensable?
The most common source of compensable PTSD tends to be ongoing stressful or abusive workplace happenings. If you believe you have developed work related PTSD, you can file a workers’ compensation claim for the injury. To do so you will need to do the following;
- Report your symptoms to your employer in an expedient manner
- Give a clear description of how your symptoms are affecting your work performance
- Provide your employer with any medical or mental health treatment you have undergone for your symptoms
- Complete the necessary paperwork to file a workers’ compensation claim
- Seek legal advice
Accident Related PTSD
Another common cause of PTSD is that which surfaces due to being in an accident or witnessing an accident. This can include being involved in a motor vehicle accident, a motorcycle accident, a boating accident, or witnessing any of these, or any other accident, that causes bodily harm to yourself or another individual. As within any accident is it important for the incident to be fully recorded by police officers or emergency personnel on the scene.
While it might seem unlikely, it is possible to suffer from PTSD after a surgical procedure. If the procedure was particularly difficult or was the result of a significant accident, it is possible to develop symptoms of PTSD as a result of your medical care. Should you experience this type of PTSD, it is imperative that you tell your health care provider and share your symptoms with them so that treatment can begin as quickly as possible.
While this may be the most difficult form of PTSD to be remedied, it is still important that any family or domestic abuse be reported to a trusted professional. Once reported, seeking mental health and medical treatment should be a priority.
Remedies for PTSD
As with many injuries, a person suffering from PTDS can be entitled to compensation.
If your PTSD symptoms are related to your work, it is important you follow all of the recommended and required procedures for filing a workers’ compensation claim. Remember you should report your PTSD injury to your employer as soon as you are aware of its origins. In addition, you must file your claim within 6 months of reporting the injury to your employer. You will have up to 3 years to claim compensation for this work-related injury.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
With regard to motor vehicle accidents, it is important to report your symptoms to your physician and possibly to the physician reviewing or following the case for the insurance company. Keep in mind you will have 28 days to report the accident to the police and a claim for lost earnings. You will have 3 months to file the motor vehicle accident claim and 3 years to make a claim for personal injury
Common Remedies Include
For both forms of PTSD common remedies include;
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Lump sum payout for lost future wages
- Lump sum payment for pain and suffering in motor vehicle accidents
- Common Law Work Injuries Damages in work-related cases
In all instances of PTSD, it is important that you report your symptoms to a treating physician as soon as possible. The earlier the treatment begins, the sooner you will start feeling like yourself again. In addition, it is imperative that if you are suffering these symptoms as a result of any of the above-mentioned causes, that you consult with a solicitor to determine if you have a claim for compensation.
In the event that you find yourself in need of assistance, please contact the law offices of Owen Hodge Lawyers. At Owen Hodge, we are always happy to assist clients in understanding the full ramifications of any and all of your legal needs. Please feel free to call us at your earliest convenience to schedule a consultation at 1800 770 780.