Section 98C appeal settled

Section 98C appeal settled

Last year we had issued an appeal in the Supreme Court challenging a decision of a Magistrate to refuse a worker to include in a Section 98C claim, injuries which he developed as a consequence of the initial work injury. In this case the worker had suffered a lower back injury at work in 2002. As a consequence of ongoing pain in his back, he was extremely limited in the exercise he could do and he put on a significant amount of weight. He then developed sleep apnoea. We sought to make a claim under Section 98C for impairment arising from the lower back injury, as well as his sleep apnoea. The insurer rejected liability for the sleep apnoea on the basis that it was not a separate injury, but was merely a consequence of the back injury. This was accepted by a Magistrate who refused to allow the worker to make such a claim. The matter was appealed by Adviceline Injury Lawyers. This week the Defendant has conceded the appeal and the worker is now to be examined by the Medical Panel. The case is important as many workers suffer subsequent injuries, for which they should be entitled to claim lump sum compensation. The most common example of this is gastric irritation arising from medication for a work injury. Such gastric problems are discrete injuries and if they arise from the compensable work injury, we argue they should be assessed to determine the worker's whole person permanent impairment. Another example is a worker who has one leg amputated and due to an altered gait develops an injury in the other good leg. These scenarios arise often and the success of this appeal is important for all such workers to ensure they can be fully compensated for all injuries arising from a work place accident.

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