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Work Related “Stress” Injuries In Arizona Work Comp

We get a lot of calls from potential clients who want to file a workers comp claim because they have a lot of stress at work or their boss is just a jerk and they can’t handle it anymore.
The short answer is, “get over it; we’re all stressed!” The long, more legal, and politically correct answer is, in order to be compensable, a mental injury must be precipitated by an event that is:
  • Unexpected
  • Unusual
  • Extraordinary stress

Required Proof

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The proof required for mental injuries is more stringent than that required for physical injuries because of the difficulty in proving a causal connection between mental illness and work-related stress.

As the Arizona Workers’ Compensation Handbook so eloquently states, “in today’s society, emotional stress has multiple causes. Some are work-related, others are not.

Types of Emotional Stress

The Long Hearing Process | Snow, Carpio & Weekley, PLCThere are two types of emotional stress cases. In the first, the mental injury is caused by a single incident. In the second, the injury-producing event is gradual in nature. The former is usually easier to prove compensable.

Examples would be where an employee sees a co-worker get shot or die or where the employee hits and kills a pedestrian while on the job. The latter (gradual) are less likely to be accepted because of the difficulty in proving a causal connection.

If you’re stressed because your boss is a jerk, you’re overworked, your hours got cut, or your co-worker makes annoying noise sounds, man up and gets over it. If you have a truly stressful event at work, call Snow, Carpio, and Weekley at (602) 532-0700 or (520) 647-9000.

Call Today! (602) 532-0700

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