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What Is an Ergonomic Work Injury?

An ergonomic work injury is an injury caused by the physical strain of performing a task in a workplace setting. It can occur due to repetitive motion, posture or awkward positions, improper workstation set-up, inadequate tools and equipment, or incorrect lifting techniques.

Ergonomic injuries are typically musculoskeletal in nature and can range from minor aches and pains to more serious conditions. They can also affect almost anyone who works, from office workers to construction workers, firefighters, and nearly any other profession.

Examples of ergonomic injuries can include:

  • Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Pain or discomfort in muscles, tendons, joints, and other soft tissues caused by repetitive motions or awkward postures.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome: Numbness, tingling, and pain in the wrist due to compression of a nerve in the wrist from overuse of computer keyboards and other components of offices.
  • Tendonitis: Swelling in tendons due to repetitive motions or overuse, leading to pain and discomfort.
  • Back pain: Discomfort or pain in the back caused by incorrect posture while sitting at a desk or chair or from lifting heavy objects improperly.
  • Eye strain: Tiredness or pain in the eyes due to prolonged staring at a computer screen, leading to headaches and blurred vision.
  • Repetitive strain injury: Pain or inflammation of muscles or tendons caused by excessive use of certain body parts, such as typing on a keyboard.
  • Neck strain: Soreness in the neck due to poor posture while sitting or standing for long periods of time.
  • Shoulder strain: Soreness or pain in the shoulders due to incorrect posture while sitting at a computer desk, or from lifting heavy objects improperly.

If left untreated, these injuries can lead to chronic pain, decreased mobility, and physical disability.

Ergonomic Injuries & Workers’ Compensation

If you work in California and have suffered an ergonomic injury due to your job, you may be entitled to worker's compensation benefits.

To qualify for worker’s compensation benefits in California, you must file an Injury Report within 30 days of the incident. You should also receive medical attention from a doctor or healthcare provider who can diagnose your injury and provide evidence that it was caused by your job duties.

Are All Ergonomic Injuries Eligible for Workers’ Comp?

Not all ergonomic injuries are covered under workers’ compensation in California. In some cases, employers may deny claims if they believe the injury was pre-existing or unrelated to work activities. This is why it’s essential to seek medical treatment right away to ensure that you have proof of your injury in case of a dispute.

If you have suffered an ergonomic injury while working in California, contact your employer or workers' compensation insurance carrier immediately to begin the filing process and learn more about your rights and potential benefits. An attorney with experience in workers’ compensation cases can also help you understand your options and ensure that you receive fair treatment and maximum benefits from your claim.

Contact Smolich and Smolich for Legal Assistance

An ergonomic injury at work can be painful and disruptive, but you don't have to face it alone. With the right resources and assistance, you can protect yourself and get the compensation you need to recover from your injury.

If you have any questions or concerns about worker’s compensation benefits in California, contact our attorneys at Smolich and Smolich today. We can help you understand the process, answer any questions that you may have, and make sure that your rights are protected.

Get started now by reaching out to us and requesting a free initial consultation.