What is Your Legal Recourse When Your Injury Takes Months to Diagnose?

What is Your Legal Recourse When Your Injury Takes Months to Diagnose?

Your back has bothered you for months. When the pain is almost completely debilitating, you go see a doctor. But during the initial examination, you don’t remember lifting those heavy boxes at work some time ago, so you don’t tell the doctor anything about it. Your diagnosis is a pulled back muscle and you are sent home to rest and with a prescription for pain medicine and muscle relaxers. All this is filed with your personal health insurance.

It is only much later, as the condition persists and grows worse, that a diagnosis of a fractured disk is made; then you remember lifting those boxes at work. That is likely the event that triggered your injury. However, because you thought nothing of it at the time, you did not report an injury at work. Workers Compensation should rightfully cover your medical treatment and any time missed from work; but can you report an injury that happened months ago? Now is when you need the expertise of Littman & Babiarz, personal injury lawyers in Syracuse, Ithaca, Auburn and Elmira, NY.

Trouble with Making a Diagnosis

Healthcare practitioners undergo years of training in order to diagnose medical conditions. However, due to the complexity of the human body, some symptoms can be produced by a number of different bodily systems and conditions. Mistakes in diagnosis can happen. New York State law does not hold healthcare providers legally responsible for all diagnostic errors.

In our example case, because of the time that had passed, the patient failed to share a piece of important information with the doctor. If you withhold information or give misleading information to the healthcare provider, either knowingly or unknowingly, that might have aided or hindered the provider’s ability to diagnose your problem, the provider cannot be held responsible for negligence by failing to diagnose your condition correctly.

Can I Make a Late Report for a Work-Related Injury?

According to the Workers Compensation Board of the State of New York, a worker has 30 days in which they must report an injury at work in writing. Most employers have a set procedure by which an employee can make such a report. However, due to the nature of some occupational diseases that are acquired over time, time limits for reporting some diseases or conditions can be difficult. The rules governing the time limits for filing an occupational disease claim are complex. You should file as soon as you know you’re ill, or suspect that you have an occupational disease.

In the case of a back injury suffered on the job in the past that became aggravated over time, you should still file a claim with your employer as soon as it becomes evident that your original injury happened at work. The New York Workers Compensation Board will accept claims up to two years after the original event. Littman & Babiarz, workers compensation lawyers in Syracuse, Ithaca, Auburn and Elmira, can represent your claims effectively before the NY Workers Compensation Review Board.

How Does a Misdiagnosis Affect My Health Insurance?

In our example scenario, the patient was treated for the wrong injury, and a claim for medical compensation was filed with the patient’s personal health insurance company. That claim may also have already been paid. However, as we discovered, the medical treatments necessary for the actual injury should have been covered by Workers Compensation.

This is yet another area where the experience of Littman & Babiarz, Attorneys at Law, personal injury lawyers in Syracuse, Ithaca, Auburn and Elmira, can help. They can work with both your personal insurance company and the NY Workers Compensation Board to ensure your medical costs are covered by the appropriate entities and any necessary reimbursements are made.

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Contact Littman & Babiarz for Questions About a Difficult Diagnosis

If you have suffered a personal injury that was difficult to diagnose, particularly if that situation has caused confusion about who is responsible for covering the costs of your medical treatments, call Littman & Babiarz, Attorneys at Law. We are personal injury lawyers in Syracuse, Ithaca, Auburn and Elmira, who also handle cases involving Workers Compensation. We have the experience in these cases to help ensure that you receive the treatment you need and the appropriate entity covers the costs. Call us today at 607-277-7527 to arrange your free initial consultation.