Stress In the Workplace: Psychological Workers Compensation Claims
Did you know that you could make psychological workers compensation claims for work related stress? Everybody knows that compensation is available for any accidents, injuries that occur in work place. Even injuries like back strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, head injuries are covered if it was the result of your work. But, many are unaware of the fact that compensation is available for mental and psychological conditions that are caused due to stress in the work. While there may be tangible proof for physical damage or injuries to a person, psychological stress related problems are a challenge to convince. Many kinds of employment situations can result in stress like harassment, job termination, job pressures etc.
Stress and its kinds
Mental stresses are of two kinds: broadly put, they are negative and positive stress. When a stress goads a person to bring the best out in him, it can be considered positive. But, more often that not it is the negative stress that looms large at workplace, when employees are burdened by conflict, pressures, ill-treatments, and even irrational expectations from employees.
Claims for Emotional Stress
Claims can be made if there is a work culture that does not take care of its employees and thus result in mental stress. Mental stress claims can be classified in three groups. First, compensations for mental stress as a result of physical injury: for instance, a permanent backache may lead to mental tension that can have lasting psychological consequences. Second, claims can be made for mental stress that results in physical injuries, where the emotional stress level of the claimant is the standard against a specific incident. And, lastly claims made for mental stress that result in more mental damage.
There are four ways in which claimant can seek compensation for mental stress. If a claimant believes that they have been subjected with job pressure due to their race, sex, or other protected status, they can claim for an equal employment opportunity (EEO) lawsuit. Claims can also be made on grounds if employees can prove unequivocally that that employer has failed to take into consideration an employee’s disability that has resulted in mental stress. Thirdly, an employee can also prove if the employer has been negligent in prevention of known stress factors present in the work place and/or inflicted deliberately emotional suffering on the employee. Lastly, the most common claims are where employees seek the state workers’ compensation system.
But laws are undergoing many changes. Earlier people had to show physical injuries to prove mental stress, but now other areas of damages are considered too. But in most cases the law still remains ambiguous when it comes to workers compensation.