PSYCHIATRIC INJURIES IN WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

PSYCHIATRIC INJURIES IN WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

By C. Brian Davidson

            One of the most difficult and complex types of workers’ compensation cases is that which involves mental injuries.  These cases are difficult to litigate for both the employee and the employer due to the often complex issues of medical and legal causation and extent of vocational impairment. However, the numbers of workers’ compensation claims in which a mental injury or disorder is involved is on the increase.  The medical community is increasingly diagnosing injured workers with mental disorders such as depression and post traumatic stress disorder as a result of the injured workers’ accident and/or subsequent pain and disabilities in conjunction with the physical injuries suffered by the worker.  The appellate courts are affirming trial court awards of permanent and total disability which included mental disorders and disabilities and physical disabilities.  Continue reading