The Epidemic Of Obesity And How It Affects Workers Compensation Claims
There is no getting away from it; we are as a nation becoming obese! In fact over 25% of the population are considered to be clinically obese. With all this considered, a Long Beach compensation lawyer explains that obesity can make workers far more susceptible to work place related injuries. In fact a recent study carried out by the Duke University of workers compensation claims states that around 25% of all claims made in 2010 were from people who were considered to be clinically obese. The study also went on to state that obese workers have around 5.5 times the medical expenses of those who are not overweight and also take 8 times as many days off work than their counterparts. This study was of great interest to insurance companies as well as employers
Clearly an employer or an insurance carrier who is processing an employee’s workers compensation claim is not allowed to be biased in any way to anyone who is overweight. However it is easy to see how a claim submitted by an overweight person might be scrutinised far more carefully by an insurance carrier or an employer than from somebody who isn’t over weight. If you are an overweight person and feel that you have had a perfectly legitimate workers compensation claim denied, then you should contact a team of experienced Long Beach workers compensation lawyers who can explain your rights.
The law states that an obese worker should be entitled to exactly the same rights as any other workers and those who are not treated as such may be subject to workplace discrimination and this applies when filling in a workers compensation claim. Insurance companies like any other business are in it to make money. As a result they are looking to take in as many monthly or weekly insurance payments as they can, whilst at the same time they will be looking to payout as little as possible when it comes to claims. This in itself is not in any way illegal and is in fact how most insurance carriers operate. However when an insurance carrier does not treat every claim with the same degree of fairness then this is classed as insurance fraud or ‘insurance bad faith’ and as a result a Long Beach workers compensation attorney who is well versed in dealing with such issues can look to help.
The best piece of advice for any overweight or obese workers when filing a workers compensation claim is to speak to a workers comp attorney who can make sure that they receive a fair and just service. For those that don’t, then there is room for recourse. If a denied claim has been overturned by the workers compensation review board and accepted, then the insurer will be instructed to pay out in full to the employee. On top of this the representing lawyer may also be able to file a lawsuit in order to claim punitive damages that are filed directly against the insurance company as a form of financial punishment.