Knee Replacement Surgery and Workers' Compensation
I’m Brian Ricci, a workers’ compensation attorney serving all of North Carolina. Sustaining a work-related injury to the knee can be a painful, stressful and overall distressing event. Not only does a worker have to manage the immediate pain and discomfort associated with the injury, there are often lasting repercussions that follow. Fortunately, it is possible to gain compensation from your employer in the event that you are injured while performing work-related duties. That can make a world of difference when those medical bills start rolling in.
What Does Knee Injury Treatment Cost?
There is no black and white answer when it comes to the cost of treating a knee injury. Factors include the extent of the damage, the individual's overall health at the time of the injury and the treatment path that is chosen. In many cases, injured workers will go through a period of rest, followed by physical therapy and pain management. If those efforts do not yield the desired result, then partial or full knee replacement may be necessary. Total knee replacement can cost anywhere from $80,000 to $100,000 or more.
How Much Will an Employer Pay for Knee Damage?
Here again, there is no cut-and-dried answer. The amount that an employer or insurance company is willing to pay depends on a great many things. For one, the degree of damage must be assessed by medical professionals. If the damage is so extensive that the injured party will have difficulty finding or keeping employment, then the eventual settlement or award may be higher than if the worker can still enjoy reasonable knee function after receiving treatment. In addition, the level of the worker's physical activity prior to the accident may also come into play. An individual who previously enjoyed a healthy and active lifestyle that included sports and strenuous outdoor activities will be perceived as having lost more of his or her quality of life than an individual who was sedentary in the years leading up to the injury. Placing a value on workplace related knee injuries is a dynamic process, and never an exact science.
Will a Pre-Existing Medical Condition Impact a Claim?
When considering the proper level of compensation for a workplace knee injury, the worker's health history will come into play. If there is a documented history or previous knee problems, then an argument will be made that the worker had already experienced reduced knee function. That means that the injury itself was not responsible for the full extent of lost function and pain and suffering. In many cases that ended up before a court, the end result was that the employer was found liable for the immediate results of the workplace injury, such as the cost of initial surgical procedures and physical therapy. However, the employer was not held responsible for the full cost of a partial or full knee replacement, as there was evidence to suggest that a knee replacement would have likely been required at some point down the road.
What Should I do After a Workplace Knee Injury?
The first and most important consideration is to seek swift medical care to address the initial physical damage. Next, contact an attorney who can assess the situation and advise on the best course of action. Workers should never rely on their employer to do the right thing; even when one's company has every intention of treating workers with dignity and respect, the amount of compensation is often determined by the insurance company, not the company. Having a trusted legal advisor on your side is the best way for Pitt County, North Carolina workers to ensure a fair and favorable outcome.
Greenville, NC Workers’ Compensation Attorney
I’m Brian Ricci, a workers’ compensation lawyer at the Ricci Law Firm; if you live in Greenville, North Carolina and the surrounding areas of Pitt County, we will be glad to represent your case. If you need our help, contact us today to get an appointment for a free consultation at (252) 752-7785 or (888) 484-6881 for free, friendly advice. Let us fight your battle.
I am a longtime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. We are a group of top rated US trial lawyers with multi-million dollar settlements and case verdicts for the injured clients we have served.