Did You Know Secondhand Smoke Could Qualify You for Workers Compensation?


Once upon a time, Hollywood movies, senior executives, and people in general thought it was cool to smoke. You could not watch a movie, turn on your TV, or read a newspaper without seeing at least one celebrity smoking, or reading an advert for cigarettes, cigars, or other tobacco products. Of course, we now know just how misguided that belief was, and that smoking is more likely to cause cancer than to make you look like James Dean, so society, in general, is not as tolerant of smokers as it once was. There is a good reason for this, as even secondhand smoke can contribute to severe and life-limiting illnesses.

While many employers and businesses have now banned smoking, and there is a limit on the areas you can smoke in, some people continue to indulge their habit around others, subjecting innocent and unwilling bystanders to the dangerous chemicals emitted. Did you know that, if you become ill because of inhaling secondhand smoke at work, you could be entitled to claim workers compensation?

Secondhand smoke at work, and workers compensation

First off, what is workers compensation?

In brief, it is intended to compensate you for your loss of earnings, and the injuries you sustained, due to a workplace incident. By law, employers in California are obligated to pay for the medical treatment required due to a workplace injury, as well as a proportion of your lost earnings while you are unable to work. However, before you can receive workers compensation, you must report your injuries as per your employer’s procedures. Generally, the process you will need to follow involves three reasonably straightforward steps:

  • Report your injuries according to your employer’s procedures
  • File a claim with your employer for workers compensation benefits
  • Filing an “application for adjudication of claim” form with the Workers Compensation Appeals Board, where applicable

Workers compensation claims can be made for, although are not limited to, the following injuries and illnesses:

  • Slip and fall injuries
  • Internal injuries
  • Head or neck injuries
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or other emotional and psychological illnesses caused by work
  • Broken bones
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Illness caused by working with, or exposure to, dangerous chemicals
  • Lung disease
  • Illnesses caused by inhaling secondhand smoke at work

Although there is a legal requirement for workers compensation to be paid, it is not uncommon for employers and their insurance companies to underpay or reject claims, leaving the injured employee out of pocket and facing rapidly growing medical expenses.

If this has happened to you, you need the help of a workers comp lawyer in Los Angeles.

Workers compensation claim denied? Speak to an expert Los Angeles workers compensation attorney today

As we understand that money is tight while you are unable to work, let us start by saying that, at the Law Offices of Kropach & Kropach, we handle workers compensation claims on a contingency basis, meaning you do not pay us until you receive what you are entitled to.

Now, to enable our Los Angeles workers compensation lawyers to get started on your case, call us today on 818-609-7005 to schedule a free initial consultation.

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