Injuries in the workplace are sadly common. A number of injuries suffered on the job are eye injuries in the workplace. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each day, about 2,000 U.S. workers sustain a job-related eye injury that requires medical treatment. Roughly one third of the injuries are treated in hospital emergency departments and more than 100 of these injuries result in workers taking time off work.
When workers are injured on the job in Los Angeles, they are entitled to receive workers' compensation benefits that typically cover medical expenses and a portion of lost wages. However, when a worker is seriously injured which leads to permanent disabilities such as loss of vision, workers' compensation benefits alone are often inadequate to cover his or her damages and losses. An experienced Los Angeles eye injury lawyer can help injured victims and their families explore all avenues of compensation in such cases.
Recognizing an Eye Injury at Work
There are many ways in which eye injuries occur on the job. A majority of eye injuries occur as a result of small particles or objects striking or scraping the eye such as dust, wood chips, cement, metal particles, etc. These materials may be ejected by tools, blown around in the wind or drop from above a worker.
Another way in which eye injuries occur on the job is when object such as nails go through the eyeball or penetrate the eyeball causing permanent vision loss. In addition, chemicals and cleaning products could result in burns. With welders, thermal burns may also occur. Any type of burn could damage workers' eyes and surrounding tissue.
After an eye injury, it may not be possible to know the extent of damage right away. However, when you suffer any type of eye injury, it is crucial to get prompt medical attention. Here are some of the most common symptoms of an eye injury:
- Changes in vision such as double vision or loss of vision
- Bleeding in the eye
- Inability to close one's eyes
- Pain in the eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Swelling of the eyes
All these symptoms could point to a serious eye injury. As soon as such symptoms develop, it is important that you see a doctor or medical provider who can provide a prompt diagnosis. If left untreated, eye injuries could become worse. So, it is critical that you get medical attention as soon as possible.
Common Work-Related Eye Injuries
Here are some of the common eye injuries suffered on the job:
Chemical eye burns: These types of burns could potentially cause vision loss. The extent of your eye injury depends on how long your eye has been exposed to the chemical.
Hyphema: This occurs when blood pools between the iris and the cornea. This type of injury is caused by blunt force trauma to the eye or a penetrating object.
Orbital bone fracture: This is when one of the bones around the eyeball breaks. When the eye is struck by an object, these types of injuries are likely.
Ruptured globe: This type of injury could require emergency treatment. Impact to the eye that causes such rupture could lead to an increase in intraocular pressure and potentially cause blindness.
Corneal abrasion: These injuries occur when the cornea gets scratched as a result of an object entering the eye. This may result in eye pain, sensitivity to light and other severe symptoms.
Detached retina: Retinal detachment is an emergency situation. It happens when the retina detaches from the lawyer of blood vessels that provide it with oxygen. Retinal detachment could result in loss of vision.
How Much Compensation Should I Expect for an Eye Injury?
Your eye injury settlement should cover the medical expenses you incurred including emergency services, surgeries, hospitalization, medical equipment, cost of medication, etc. When you file a personal injury lawsuit in addition to a workers' compensation claim, you may also be able to seek compensation for ongoing medical treatment, loss of earning capacity, permanent injuries, loss of life's enjoyment and pain and suffering.
You may be able to receive temporary or permanent disability benefits though workers' compensation benefits in addition to medical expenses and a portion of lost income. If you have total loss of vision due to your work-related eye injury, your compensation amounts may be much higher. An experienced Los Angeles eye injury lawyer will be able to evaluate your claim and help understand your legal rights and options.
How Can I Make an Eye Injury Claim?
It isn't always clear to victims what you should do after an eye injury at work. Eye injuries are not only painful, but have the potential to cause catastrophic damage. If you have suffered an eye injury in the workplace, it is important that you get prompt medical attention. After you address your medical needs, it is important that you report your workplace injury to your employer and fill out an incident report. If your employer does not have a list of medical providers you can choose from to get treatment for you work injuries, you can pick your own doctor. Be sure to get the necessary treatment and follow your doctor's instructions and recommendations. Your employer or their insurance company will approve or deny your claim. File an appeal with the help of you attorney if you believe your claim was wrongfully denied.
How Our Eye Injury Lawyers Can Help You
If you have suffered your eye injuries as a result of negligence on the part of someone other than your employer, you may be able to file a third-party lawsuit seeking compensation for your injuries, damages and losses. Our legal team works on a contingency fee basis, which means you will not be charged any fees unless we win compensation for you. Call us to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.
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