Legal Question in Personal Injury in Massachusetts

My husband just found out he has herniated disk. When he first went to the doctors he told that it wasn't work related because he didn't have one accident. He is a truck driver for a lumber company and carries a lot of weight, which according to the doctor and physical therapist have contributed to his problem.

Can he go after workers comp now, after saying at first that it wasn't work related?

Asked on 9/28/09, 8:08 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

David Green Law Offices of Christopher F. Earley

It depends. I would need more information to properly answer this question.

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Answered on 10/03/09, 8:56 pm

henry lebensbaum Law Offices of Henry Lebensbaum (978-749-3606)

You need to contact an attorney specializing in Workers Compensation on Monday, and review the information. Time is not your best friend.

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Answered on 10/03/09, 9:04 pm

It is typical for a truck driver's wife to be running the worker's compensation claim. You should tell him that he should go to an experienced WC attorney. This will not cost him anything, because under the law the attorney is not allowed to charge the injured worker anything unless there is a settlement or he is able to be paid by the insurer. Unless your husband also has a medical degree and is experienced in orthopedics he should not be diagnosing the cause of his herniated disc. If there is a doctor who will relate this condition to his work as a truck driver, then he would probably have a case. How the question is framed to the doctor requires a significant amount of legal knowledge in MA worker's compensation law. This is not an area where a person should be representing himself. Please remember there are all kinds of herniated discs, some impinge on nerves and some do not. About 30 percent of people in their 40's and 50's have herniated discs, a lot of those people are not truck drivers. This is part of a degenerative process. Under workers' compensation an employee is paid time lost from work. Unless the disc is symptomatic and causes your husband to lose wages it is not a workers' compensation claim. Good luck.

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Answered on 10/04/09, 4:14 am

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