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Workers' Compensation claims that involve injuries on or after October 1, 2003, are subject to changes in the law. These changes include a new definition of a "pre-existing condition."
In general terms, a "preexisting condition" is a medical condition which a worker had prior to a claimed work injury or occupational disease, and which contributed to it. With the new law and definition, these conditions must be taken into account during the determination of whether the workers' compensation claim will be covered.
The most important consideration of the changes in the definition is: the purported preexisting condition now must "contribute to" at least 51% of the disability or need for treatment, not just "predispose" the worker to disability or need for treatment. This is called "Major Contributing Cause" and it is used frequently by insurance carriers to deny claims. Many times these denials are wrong and you should contact an attorney to discuss your case.
Unfortunately insurance companies will very often deny your case when they find prior injuries, even when the prior injuries have nothing to do with your current injuries. There are differences in the law between industrial injury section and the law's definition of a "pre existing condition." The Industrial Injury section of the law has a "requirement of a diagnosis or medical services or treatment preceding the claimed condition"; this requirement is not listed under the definition of "preexisting condition" for occupational disease claims. When the insurance companies deny claims (inappropriately) based on these wording differences you really do want an attorney backing your claim!
Preexisting condition means any injury, disease, congenital abnormality, personality disorder or similar condition that contributes to disability or need for treatment.
The new definition requires that the alleged preexisting condition contribute to disability or need for treatment. The new law explicitly states that a preexisting condition does not "contribute to" disability or need for treatment, "if the condition merely renders the worker more susceptible to the injury," in industrial (Workers Compensation) injury claims.
With respect to injury claims, the new law now places the "burden of proof" from the employee to the employer in cases where the work injury combined with a preexisting condition to show that the current injury is at least 51% of the disability and need for treatment.
The "burden of proof" refers to which party in a dispute has the responsibility to present evidence to prove a particular point. The injured party must prove he (or she) suffered a "compensable work injury" or an "occupational disease". You will likely nee the help of a professional here. You should note that under the new law that if the "compensable injury" combines with a preexisting condition, the resulting combined condition is compensable only as long as the injury is the major contributing cause of the disability or need for treatment.
An "occupational disease" is any disease or infection arising out of employment and caused by substances or activities the worker is subject to or exposed to during regular actual employment, and not ordinarily exposed to outside of employment. The disease or infection must require medical services or result in disability or death. It may come from ingesting, inhaling, absorbing or contacting dust, fumes, vapors, gases, radiation or other substances. It may be a mental disorder, sudden or gradual in onset. It may be a series of traumatic events or occurrences (including the multiple "micro-traumas" of repetitious physical activities).
To summarize, the standards for a preexisting condition under the new Workers Compensation law has been tightened and the employee will have to show that the current injury meets the 51% test in preexisting condition circumstances.
A ttorneys at the Kevin Moore Workers' Compensation Law Firm help victims of Florida work place injuries receive just compensation for their losses. We're not just another law firm. We're not just any lawyers. We are highly experienced workers' compensation attorneys - that is what we do. We serve clients throughout Florida our offices in Tampa, Orlando, Jacksonville and Miami.
If your injury is serious enough and your case is important enough to you then call a lawyer. It is critical that you do the research to find a reputable, capable attorney. We believe our success in recovering large awards and settlements speaks for itself about the quality of our representation, quality that we refer to as the "Advantage of Experience."
This Website discusses our legal practice and our credentials, and it provides some general information on Florida Workers' Compensation Law. Every case is unique and deserves to be evaluated on its own merits. Please contact us for a free consultation before making a decision about representation. You will speak with Kevin Moore directly not a staff member.
Our Firm welcomes the challenges offered by difficult cases involving serious injuries and complex issues. We know how to fight the insurance companies and win. If you have been injured due to any work place related incident, do not hesitate to call and talk to us. You deserve to know your valuable Legal Rights.
What you don't need is a lawyer who "also" practices Workers' Comp. More and more, laws are being written that are only fully understood by those few lawyers who are highly competent in specific areas. Finding the "right lawyer", means a lawyer with substantial workers compensation knowledge and experience, is what you want when you need competent help. Lawyers should be selected for their expertise and experience in specific categories of cases. The "right lawyer" for your Workers' Comp case is the person who has substantial experience handling a case very similar to yours, who can and will take action at once.
Kevin Moore and his Florida Workers' Compensation law firm is who you want and what you need!
You may need a fighter by your side! Just when you are at your weakest you may have to fight! Florida Workers Comp Insurance companies are notorious for denying claims, stalling appeals, and denying rightful or quality care and services. The insurance company's goal is to save money - not to assure you your rightful care and compensation. There are thousands and thousands of cases where, with the right lawyer representing preexisting conditions cases, that the insurance companies have their denials of services and claims denied by a Judge of Compensation Claims. The injured worker can win if they have the right attorney taking on the fight for them - not a firm that is distracted by other practices and is willing to settle for less!
At the Tampa Florida workers compensation Law Firm of Kevin A. Moore, you can be assured that our workers comp legal team will listen to you with compassion and understanding. Attorney Kevin More is well qualified to have your medical records evaluated, communicate with your doctors and therapists and encourage you to follow the prescribed recommended therapies to make sure that you are getting everything you are entitled to under Florida Workers Comp law. If you are not getting what you are entitled to, Kevin is ready to fight the insurance companies for youu at Mediations and, if necessary, at trial. With Kevin Moore as your attorney, you will have the best Florida Workers Comp lawyer in the State of Florida representing you!
Kevin Moore has been aggressively practicing law and guiding and protecting his clients' interests since 1992. Kevin and his Firm have handled over 4,500 WC cases and a significant number of cases involving Preexisting Conditions. No Florida Workers Compensation attorney will do a better job in seeing that you get justice and compensation for your workplace loss. Call us or contact us us now. Our consultations are always free and you never pay a fee unless we win your case. In the Tampa Area or State Wide the Florida Workers' Compensation Law Firm of Kevin A. Moore will be on your side and by your side.
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