Preexisting injuries have a way of complicating accident claims. If you have such a case, the defendant is likely to argue that their negligence did not harm you, or if it did, it only caused you a minimal harm. The defendant will do anything in their power to tie your current injuries to the previous ones. Use these three tips to strengthen your accident claim if you also have preexisting injuries:
Tell the Truth about Your Preexisting Condition
Telling the truth about your condition will help you get an accurate and timely diagnosis. A medical diagnosis of your condition may be required to certify that your injuries occurred on the job as you claim. If you lie about your preexisting injuries, you will only delay the diagnosis and even lose your benefits.
Consider an example where you have osteoporosis (a medical condition characterized by weak and brittle bones) but have lied to the company doctor or employer about it. Suppose an object falls on you and you develop a leg fracture. If the object wasn't heavy enough to cause a fracture in a person who doesn't have osteoporosis, the employer might think that you are lying about the cause of your injury.
Follow Your Doctor's Orders to the Letter
Follow your doctor's orders to the letter; ignoring them might lead to a rightful denial of your claim. For example, if your doctor orders you not to lift heavy objects, don't do it. Other possible restrictions include avoiding certain foods, taking certain drugs or avoiding certain allergens. As long as you can prove that you followed your doctor's advice and restrictions, you will get compensation for your preexisting injuries.
Prove That Your Injuries Have Been Aggravated
Lastly, you need to prove how the new accident has aggravated or reawakened your prior injuries. It is not enough that you have an existing injury, something work related must have happened to make it worse. For example, merely having eye problems will not get you workers compensation. However, if you have been using computers or welding equipment at work, and they have made your eye condition worse, you deserve to be compensated. Of course, you will need expert testimony or medical records from your doctor to prove that this is the case.
All these will be easier if you have the assistance of a personal injury lawyer than if you go it alone. Don't forget that the defense team will have access to your medical history, so you can't (and shouldn't) hide your preexisting injuries from them. Your best bet is to reveal everything and hire a smart lawyer to help you prove why you deserve compensation for your current injuries.