Are Psychiatric Claims Legitimate?

Are Psychiatric Claims Legitimate?

In workers compensation, are so-called “psych” claims legitimate? Like all else in this world of ours, it depends. As the result of reform legislation several years ago, the value of standard orthopedic workers compensation was essentially cut in half.

In workers compensation, are so-called “psych” claims legitimate? Like all else in this world of ours, it depends. As the result of reform legislation several years ago, the value of standard orthopedic workers compensation was essentially cut in half. Immediately, attorneys looking for ways to recoup these losses began amending the standard back injury (for instance) with claims not only of injury to one’s “psyche” (often as a compensable consequence of the aching back) but with allegations of sleep disturbance and sexual dysfunction as well. Clearly, some of these wild assertions are not based on sound medical or legal reasoning. These claims remain a problem and an expensive one for the insurance industry. However, due to certain statutory safeguards, phony claims can oftentimes be weeded out during the litigation process.

But let’s look at the other side of the coin. If you’ve got a “blown” disk in your back, even if you have surgery, it is quite possible that you will experience some degree of depression concerning your physical limitations and you may have more than one sleepless night contending with the associated pain. Therefore, certain psychiatric claims may indeed be both reasonable and legitimate and you may be entitled to additional compensation accordingly.

*The above article was published in the April 2012 edition of The Magazine of Santa Clarita ~ www.santaclaritamagazine.com. All rights reserved.

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