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Out-of-state case shows how PTSD can be a work-related condition

Imagine that you are on the job, minding your own business when suddenly there is a horrific accident that injures and kills several of your coworkers. Even though you are not physically injured by the accident in any way, you did witness the tragedy and find it difficult to push the incident from your memories.

In the weeks following the accident, you find yourself distracted, unable to perform your job because of the recurrent recollection of the traumatic experience. You contemplate filing for workers' compensation but you aren't sure if your now disabling condition will be considered work-related or not. You're concerned that your claim could be denied even though you feel you have a legitimate claim.

What would you do? If you're not sure, then you wouldn't be alone. That's because, even though the Social Security Administration considers post-traumatic stress disorder to be a debilitating condition that is eligible for disability benefits, it's not always recognized as a work-related condition. This can make filing for workers' compensation quite difficult and may require the help of an experienced attorney.

Our Ohio readers can see this exemplified by an out-of-state case where a UPS driver filed for workers' compensation after witnessing a brutal murder. Suffering from PTSD, which interfered with his ability to do his job, he sought benefits for his believed to be work-related condition. Although his claim was nearly denied by his employer, a judge recently sided with the man and the workers' compensation commission, giving him access to his benefits.

What this case highlights and is worth pointing out to our readers is the fact that even though a condition may not have an obvious link to a person's occupation, this does not mean that it was not work-related. Being able to argue this fact on your own might be difficult though, which is why legal representation may be necessary.

Sources: Courthouse News Service, "Murder Scene Find Nets UPS Driver PTSD Benefits," Jeff D. Gorman, Sept. 29, 2014

The Social Security Administration, "12.00 Mental Disorders - Adult," Accessed Sept. 30, 2014

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