For those that suffer from respiratory problems, easy breathing becomes something of a luxury. When the respiratory system isn’t functioning as it is intended, symptoms may vary widely between that of a mild cold to those of severe pneumonia.

Frequently, respiratory problems develop as a result of being exposed to harmful exposures and dangerous materials in the workplace. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), it is estimated that about 70% of occupational disease deaths occur from work-related respiratory diseases and cancers.

 Respiratory Problems: Symptoms

  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Pneumonia
  • Wheezing
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nasal congestion
  • Bacterial infection
  • Respiratory infection
  • Viral infections, influenza
  • Sore throat, coughing, fever

Florida workers’ compensation isn’t limited to injury and accidents on-the-job. Sometimes employees develop respiratory problems caused by continuous exposure to dangerous materials within their workplace. Respiratory problems fall under a workers’ compensation category named occupational disease.

Respiratory Problems: Occupational Disease

The following is a list of examples of respiratory diseases that may be caused by the work environment.

  • Asbestosis – common among asbestos miners friable asbestos insulation
  • Coal worker’s Pneumonoconiosis – coal miners and tunnel operators
  • Occupational Asthma – common in numerous occupations at risk
  • Lung disease – caused by poor indoor air quality
  • Byssinosis – cotton textile industry

Depending on the severity of the respiratory problems and how it affects the employee’s ability to perform his work duties, the individual could likely be eligible for workers’ compensation. A skilled South Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorney can assist the victim process their settlement.

Employers Required to Offer Workers’ Compensation

According to the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation, the following types of employers are required to offer coverage:

  • State and local governments
  • Industry with four or more employees
  • Construction industry with at least one employee
  • Farmer with five regular employees or 12 seasonal employees

Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Broward County employers are responsible to provide workers’ compensation benefits to victims of occupational respiratory problems including:

  • Lost Wages
  • Doctor Visits
  • Hospitalization
  • Medical Tests
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Mileage Costs for Treatment
  • Physical and Psychological Therapy

Temporary partial or total disability benefits may be provided to employees with respiratory problems caused by the workplace.  Often long term costs are incurred as a result of more severe respiratory diseases. In the case of respiratory disease that leads to wrongful death within the workplace, death benefits and burial expenses may also be awarded.
If you or a family member have respiratory problems caused by the workplace, it is important to talk with an experienced South Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorney. Your attorney can help you prepare your paperwork to get the results you are looking for.

If you need assistance to determine if you should pursue your workers’ compensation claim, the Law Office of David Benenfeld is here to help. For or a free legal consultation and book call today: [number type=”2″] or [number type=”1″].