Alabama Work Injury Occupational Disease

If you work in Alabama, you are not only entitled to workers' compensation benefits when you suffer a work injury, you also may be entitled to workers' compensation benefits if you suffer a job illness which leads to a permanent loss--this is called an Occupational Disease.

In our last blog we gave the legal definition of compensable job illness/occupational disease, now we will attempt to begin making sense of the definition.

It is important to note that no disease is precluded from being defined as an occupational disease. Asthma, COPD, pneumoconiosis, cancer, hearing loss, emphysema, mesothelioma and other illness can qualify for an occupational disease, therefore entitling you to workers' compensation benefits in Alabama IF the disease (i) is not merely temporary in nature, (ii) was caused (or a pre existing condition was worsened) by you job duties IF your job duties exposed you to hazards which are (a) in excess of those ordinarily incident to employment in general and (b) are different in character from those found in general occupations.

First, you should note that our courts have stated that a disease means more than a temporary disorder; rather, it denotes a serious disorder which has chronically impaired the worker. A temporary aggravation of your asthma or a ringing in your ears which goes away in time will not be considered a compensable occupational disease. Only when your job illness is a serious, chronic problem will an claim for workers' compensation benefits for an occupational disease be a possibility.

In our next blog, we will deal with the issue of occupational causation.

If you have suffered a work injury or believe that you have suffered a job illness/occupational disease such as COPD, pneumoconiosis, cancer, hearing loss, emphysema, black lung, mesothelioma or some other illness and you have questions about your rights under the Alabama Workers' Compensation law, the experienced Alabama Work Injury attorneys at Powell and Denny would be happy to speak with you and try to help you with your questions.

Powell and Denny: We Work When You Can't

Offices in Birmingham, AL and Huntsville, AL

Alabama Work Injury Occupational Disease