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Denver workers suffer injuries on the job all the time, but far too many dismiss the notion that they should receive compensation. Perhaps they assume that workers’ compensation is only for extreme situations and critical injuries. It is therefore worth pausing to ask: just what types of injuries are compensable under workers’ compensation?
The answer may sound like common sense, but in fact it may come as a surprise to some. The answer is not based on the type of injury, the body part affected, or how severe the symptoms are. One has simply to ask: is there a connection between the job requirements or conditions and the injury suffered by the worker? If the answer to this question is yes, then it is a work-related injury.
It could be anything from an obvious injury like a sprain or fracture suffered after falling from a ladder at a construction site, to emphysema or lung cancer from breathing secondhand smoke on the job, perhaps at a bar or restaurant, to injuries in the tendons and joints of the hand and wrist from long hours without a break from the computer keyboard. An anxiety disorder arising from a stressful situation at work could also qualify. Even some injuries suffered offsite during work-required travel or in a company vehicle can be considered work-related and therefore compensable.
Things can get complicated, however, when a victim’s status as an employee comes into question. Some companies will try to claim that the victim’s status was that of an independent contractor. And employees in certain industries as well as those without legal documentation may also find themselves excluded from their employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. For these reasons, many will choose to consult with a legal professional when considering a workers’ compensation claim.