If you’re a worker in Missouri, you can consider yourself fortunate. Unlike in other states, Missouri doesn’t say there needs to be a physical injury present to compensate treatment for psychological injuries.
Still, when it comes to mental health and worker’s comp, there are a lot of gray areas. It’s crucial to fully understand your rights so that, should you need to, you know how to proceed.
What Kind of Psychological Injuries Are Compensated?
Injured workers in Missouri may recover benefits for the following types of psychological injuries:
- Emotional or psychological damage resulting from an incident at work, be it an accident or a traumatic event they witness
- Psychological injuries caused by stress, tension, or overall work-environment
- Physical injuries that are caused by psychological distress
As with physical injuries, as long as your condition is caused by your job, then there should be no problem in getting compensated. These benefits should cover the cost of your treatment, which in this case could be seeing a therapist, as well as medical treatment, as well as time off work if your doctor suggests it.
There is one major issue here, however. In Missouri, your employer has the right to choose your worker’s compensation doctor or, in this case, psychologist or therapist. Often, they let the insurance company make this decision. This can create some uncomfortable situations because many workers don’t feel very comfortable discussing their problems at length with a therapist chosen by the insurance company.
Still, even so, the insurance company and employer have no say in your treatment. Though they choose the therapist, they are not legally allowed to intervene in any way that could affect your therapy. If you believe your worker’s comp therapist may be speaking with the insurance company about you, reach out to a Missouri worker’s compensation lawyer as soon as possible.
How to Get Compensated
Compensation for psychological injuries can be tricky. For one thing, they are invisible and complex enough to have multiple potential causes that may even go beyond your work.
As a result, expect to get an examination from a mental health professional to assess your condition. Additionally, your mental health history may also come into question, as well as your interactions with co-workers. These steps will be all part of the insurance company trying to find out whether your claim is true or not. Though in theory there’s nothing to worry about, this process can be problematic because the insurance company is not on your side, and may look at anything that can help them dismiss your claim.
What Are Your Options?
If your work puts a lot of stress on you, and you are worried about your mental health, speak up. Get in touch with a Kansas City worker’s comp lawyer to find out more about what it takes to get properly compensated for your injuries.
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