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Stress-related worker’s compensation claims are hard to prove

Workers in New York were excited when they learned that they could file a worker’s compensation claim for stress. However, as the American Bar Association points out, these cases are notoriously difficult to prove. Unfortunately, the most successful cases occur when stress has gone far enough to cause mental and physical health complications that affect a person’s ability to live a normal, healthy life and function at work.

Workers may need to prove one or more of the following to have a strong case:

  •          The stress caused permanent impairment
  •          Stress levels were higher than average for the job position
  •          The stress was primarily work-related rather than fed by personal issues

New Yorkers should also note that worker’s compensation claims do not usually lead to permanent income even when successful. In most instances, workers may get a temporary break from work as well a portion of their income during this time. Put simply, the person may need to return to work at some point, unless they are able to successfully secure Social Security disability benefits on the same grounds.

According to the New York State website, courts must first determine the percentage of disability from which the worker suffers. They then multiple this disability by two-thirds of the worker’s weekly wages. So, for instance, if a New Yorker received weekly wages of $1000, and stress resulted in 100% disability, they would receive approximately $666.67.

The state website also says that the injured worker will receive medical care for conditions directly related to the reason for their disability. The employer or their insurer pays for the cost of medical care. Finally, supplemental benefits may also be available, but they could not exceed more than $215 per week when combined with death benefits and weekly benefits.

This article provides information on stress-related worker’s compensation claims. It should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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  • Walter J. Roesch IV
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