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Under Arizona law, there are many instances in which an injured worker may be able to collect benefits. For example, workers’ compensation benefits cover any work-related accident, disease, or medical condition. In some cases, the connection to an injury and an occupation may be obvious – for example, when a construction worker falls off scaffolding and breaks his or her leg. In other cases, however, the connection might not be so obvious. This often applies when aggravating a pre-existing condition because of the nature of your work tasks.

Fortunately, you can still collect workers’ compensation benefits when your job exacerbates or accelerates a pre-existing condition. Arizona law classifies them as temporary or permanent aggravations. Contacting a Phoenix aggravated pre-existing conditions attorney like the Phoenix workers’ comp lawyers at Cruz & Associates and knowing your legal options and how they might affect your right to compensation will better prepare you for what comes next.

Temporary Vs. Permanent Aggravations

There are two types of aggravations outlined in Arizona workers compensation law, these two aggravations are:

Temporary – A temporary aggravation describes an incident in which a pre-existing condition returns to its “baseline” after a short period of time. Examples might include things like carpal tunnel syndrome, aggravation of a previously herniated disc, or arthritis.

Permanent – A permanent aggravation occurs when a pre-existing condition does not return to baseline after weeks or even months. In these instances, you may be entitled to permanent disability benefits. 

Common Sources of Aggravation of Pre-Existing Conditions

Some sources of aggravation are more common than others. Some of the most common conditions exacerbated by job duties include ailments affecting the hips, knees, and shoulder joints. A worker may have a pre-existing condition that occurs from natural aging or another injury unrelated to work, which becomes worse from a work-related task like lifting heavy boxes or typing.

How Arizona Law Treats Aggravation Claims

In Arizona, you can collect benefits to account for aggravation for a pre-existing condition, but only to the degree to which your condition is worsened by your work-related injury. In other words, the state workers’ compensation board views these incidents differently than injuries caused by the job.

When you experience an exacerbation of a pre-existing injury or condition, a doctor will evaluate you and determine if your industrial duties led to a worsening in your symptoms. They will also determine if this condition is temporary or permanent.

If you think your exacerbation is directly related to your job, it’s important to see a doctor who specializes in treating injured occupational workers. This helps ensure that they will be familiar with workers’ compensation rules and know which terminology to use to describe your condition for the purpose of your claim. Contacting a Phoenix aggravated pre-existing conditions lawyer can also help with presenting your injury to board to get compensation you need and deserve.

Get Help From a Phoenix Aggravated Pre-Existing Conditions Attorney

As you can see, getting workers’ compensation benefits for an injury exacerbation can be complex. Often, they require the assistance of an attorney. The lawyers at Cruz & Associates can help you understand your rights under Arizona workers’ compensation law. If you believe your pre-existing medical condition was accelerated or exacerbated by completing your work tasks, contact us to schedule a free review of your legal options. Let us help you get the compensation you deserve.