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Does Workplace Stress Count for Workers' Comp?

Although we often think of “injuries” as purely physical, the truth is that stress can cause equally serious side effects, and lead you to develop lasting mental disorders and conditions. For instance, disorders like PTSD can arise after you’ve suffered from a workplace accident, and depression is common among those who experience discrimination from their colleagues.

If you’ve been affected by stress, you may be experiencing symptoms like depression and anxiety, as well as physiological changes related to your mental injuries. In Texas, you can seek workers’ compensation for work-related stress; however, it does depend on how you sustained these injuries in the workplace.

When Can I File a Claim for Work-Related Stress?

Workers compensation allows employees who have suffered an injury to receive benefits for their recovery. In Texas, some mental injuries may also be deserving of compensation and time off work. This is why workers are allowed to file a workers’ compensation claim with their employer’s insurance company once they have medical evidence that stress has impacted their life.

If your injury was caused by a legal personnel change or another legitimate action from your employer, however, you will not be permitted to file a workers’ compensation claim and receive financial benefits. For example, if you were terminated under legitimate circumstances and then file a claim for depression or other mental disorders, you will be denied.

That means you can only file a claim if your stress and anxiety stem from a specific illegitimate action on part of your employer, or because of the actions of a third party. Under Texas law, there must also be a specific traumatic event that preceded your emotional or stress injuries. Otherwise, you will only be able to pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit that shows the other party’s negligence.

Here are some instances where you may be able to file for workplace stress injuries under workers’ comp:

  • If your boss or peers are engaging in discriminatory behavior against you based on sex, race, national origin, or another protected category.
  • If you were the victim of wrongful termination by your employer.
  • If you suffered from mental trauma after witnessing an accident.
  • If you were the victim of physical violence in the workplace or during working hours.
  • If you have developed PTSD as a result of a traumatic incident.
  • If your employer engaged in illegal retaliation for whistleblowing or filing a claim.

We Are Committed to Protecting Your Rights

At The Law Offices of George P. Escobedo & Associates, PLLC., our San Antonio workers’ compensation team has more than 10 years of combined legal experience and a strong track record of success. We understand how painful it can be to live with a stress-related injury, and worry about your financial future. It’s our goal to help you navigate through the process of filing a workers’ comp claim and receiving your rightful benefits. We can also answer any questions you have about stress injuries, and whether you’re eligible to make a claim.

Call (210) 807-3178 today for more information!