Charlotte Workplace Toxic Exposure Attorneys
Assisting Victims of Toxic Exposure With Workers’ Compensation Claims in North Carolina
Employees can develop serious, potentially life-threatening health issues when they are exposed to toxic substances at work. The North Carolina workers’ compensation system is meant to protect employees who suffer injuries due to toxic exposure by covering medical expenses and some of their lost wages. Proving that an illness is work-related can often be difficult, however, preventing many vulnerable, injured employees from getting the benefits they need.
If you think you became ill because of dangerous substances in your workplace, turn to Stewart Law Offices for comprehensive and compassionate legal representation. We recognize the impact an occupational illness is almost certainly having on your ability to work and enjoy your life and are committed to fighting for the benefits you to which you may be entitled under the law. Our Charlotte workplace toxic exposure lawyers have recovered millions* for our clients and are prepared to leverage the full extent of our firm’s experience and resources in our fight to enforce your rights.
If you are unable to come to us, one of our attorneys can come to you at your home or in the hospital at no charge. After assessing the details of your case, we will review your legal options and give you the information you need to make an informed decision about how to move forward. You can expect responsive support throughout the legal process, as our team will be available to answer your questions 24/7.
Our Charlotte workplace toxic exposure lawyers can help you stand up to these unfair tactics and fight to get you the benefits you need and deserve to which you are entitled, including which may include coverage for medical costs and a portion of lost income.
What Are the Dangers of Toxic Exposure?
You may not realize it, but there is a good chance you are in close proximity to potentially harmful substances on a daily basis. Certain types of workplaces are more likely to contain or handle known dangerous substances that have the potential to confer serious illnesses. Especially dangerous substances are often found in industrial settings, but some toxins also exist in more “ordinary” environments like restaurants and airports. In some cases, working around highly toxic substances is an inherent risk of a job, while in other situations, harmful toxins may simply be present in older buildings, with or without your knowledge.
Examples of toxic substances commonly encountered in North Carolina workplaces include:
- Corrosive chemicals
Though we may picture some sort of meltdown or leak when we think of “toxic exposure,” the reality is you can become exposed in a variety of ways. Toxic substances could enter your body through inhalation, ingestion, or skin contact.
Potential health consequences of toxic exposure include:
- Brain and neurological injuries
- Cardiovascular injuries
- Gastrointestinal injuries
- Lung or throat injuries
- Respiratory issues
Can an Employee Get Workers’ Compensation Benefits for Toxic Exposure in North Carolina?
Workers’ compensation insurance covers all work-related injuries, including occupational illnesses triggered by toxic exposure. Not all workers in North Carolina are necessarily entitled to benefits.
You are most likely eligible for workers’ compensation coverage for toxic exposure injuries if:
- You were an employee (not an independent contractor) when the exposure occurred
- Your employer has at least three employees
- The exposure was not the result of intoxicated behavior
- The exposure was not the result of your attempting to harm yourself or someone else
- The toxic exposure was work-related
Unlike in a toxic tort claim, fault does not matter when filing a workers’ compensation for toxic exposure. You do not have to prove your employer (or anyone else) was negligent to receive benefits. You are typically still eligible for workers’ compensation even if the exposure was your fault.
Our Charlotte workplace toxic exposure attorneys can help ascertain your eligibility if you are still not sure whether you have a right to file a claim. Do not wait to get in touch, as you have very limited time to start the process.
How an Attorney Can Help With a Workers’ Compensation Claim for Toxic Exposure
Unless there was an undeniable exposure event, there is a strong possibility that your employer or their insurance provider will contest that your illness was work-related. They may suggest you became ill due to factors outside your workplace, even if you frequently work around harmful substances. Even with ample evidence, insurance companies often look to limit coverage.
We are familiar with the bad-faith strategies employers and insurers use to deny and limit coverage and will make every effort to facilitate a swift and favorable resolution. Our team of attorneys at Stewart Law Offices is ready to assist you if:
- Your claim was denied
- Your employer or their insurance provider is suggesting your illness is not job-related
- Your employer failed to report your injury
- Your employer’s insurance provider has stopped responding to your emails or calls
- Your employer’s insurance provider offers an unacceptably low settlement
- The doctor chosen by your employer or their insurance provider fails to recognize the extent of your illness
How Long Does A North Carolina Employee Have To File A Workers’ Compensation Claim For Toxic Exposure?
To get workers’ compensation, employees must report work-related injuries, including occupational illnesses, within 30 days of discovering them. After an initial report has been made, injured employees have two years from the date they discovered their work-related injuries to file a workers’ compensation claim. These deadlines become more complicated in cases involving toxic exposure. Because exposure is sometimes “invisible,” you may not realize you have been harmed until the health consequences become apparent weeks, months, or years after the exposure event.
Fortunately, you still have the right to seek workers’ compensation if an occupational illness becomes apparent, but you must report an illness within 30 days of the date you began to suspect the illness may be work-related. In other words, you should file a written report with your employer as soon as you think you may have gotten sick or injured due to toxic exposure at work. You will have two years from the date you discovered the illness or injury may be work-related to file your claim.