There’s nothing more terrifying than that tightening in your chest before a heart attack. Whether you’re at work, have just been fired or laid off, or are driving home stressed out after a brutal day at work, a heart attack can be fatal – and will certainly change your life. Sometimes you don’t know it’s coming, and you have to get help – fast. If you have a heart attack on the job, because of your job, or somehow related to your job, you’re not alone. The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act provides guidelines about what is and isn’t eligible as a workers’ comp claim. If you’ve had a heart attack at work, should you file a claim?
Our answer is: maybe.
The Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act
The statute that governs workers’ compensation claims in the state of Pennsylvania is the PA Workers’ Compensation Act. If you are curious about the statute and what its language means to you, it’s best to contact a trusted Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney. In Pennsylvania, your employer is liable for the compensation due to you if you have a personal injury – including a heart attack – on the job. If your loved one was in the course of employment and passed away, you are also entitled to file a claim under the law.
In the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, “injury” means an injury that happens to an employee, regardless of their previous physical condition. In order to be able to file a claim, this injury has to arise in the course of, and related to, employment and/or on-the-job duties. An “injury arising in the course of employment” does include any and all injuries a worker might sustain while actually engaged in working, or the furtherance of the business of the employer. To try and recover damages and compensation for the time you’re out of work, and the bodily harm you have been dealt due to the course of your employment, essentially two elements must be present: 1) suffering an objectively verifiable injury to your physical body; and 2) that injury arose during the course your employment.
Proving the work-related heart attack
If you have a work related heart attack, for example, you might have a suit that is compensable under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act. Your previous physical condition – whether you were overweight, for example, or had a previous stint – does not affect your ability to recover damages. If you do have a heart attack on company time, however, it is likely that the burden will fall on you to prove that you had this happen because of abnormal working conditions. Solid medical testimony from physicians and your care team will be required, especially in heart attack cases where the connection and cause of the cardiac event and your work is not immediately obvious.
At Larry Pitt & Associates, we represent all kinds of injured workers and fight for compensable restitution for all types of injuries. If you’ve suffered a heart attack due to your work environment, it’s highly important that you get a lawyer as soon as you’ve recovered enough to process what happened. Not only is there a statute of limitations on claims, but you will need to make sure you’re being fully represented and advocated for in your time of greatest need. If you or a family member needs help after a work related heart attack, don’t hesitate to call us to discuss your case. Please call 888.PITT.LAW or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment where we can learn about you. We fight for injured workers in Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties.