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Time limits for workers' compensation occupational illness claims

The last thing a sick worker has on his mind is money, but sooner or later reality comes knocking on your door. Maybe you've been laid out for a few weeks because you succumbed to occupational asthma -- after being exposed to bad air for years at Asheville construction sites. Perhaps you've been going to the doctor to get the treatments. However, you're too ill to work and haven't been getting paid any wages.

If your disease conditions stem from your employment and you can't work because of them, you can probably get workers' compensation wage replacement benefits in addition to money to pay for your medical treatments. However, you need to act now, before it's too late to file a claim.

Statutes of limitation that apply to workers' compensation claims

Every workers' compensation occupational illness claim will be subject to a "statute of limitation." This means that you only have a set period of time after your job injuries to pursue your claim for damages.

Different states may have different laws that apply to time limits on filing for occupational illness compensation and North Carolina is no different. In our state, you must report and give notice to your employer of your work-related illness within two years of a disability or death, or the workers' compensation claim will be invalid.

The only exceptions to this rule apply to cases of lead poisoning, silicosis and asbestosis. In these cases, notice must be provided based on a two-year date, which runs from the date the patient was diagnosed.

Failing to apply for workers' compensation within this timeframe means that the claims will be forever barred.

Statutes of limitation are serious and it's important to monitor them

One of the first things that a workers' compensation lawyer will do when evaluating your potential claim will be to review how statutes of limitation apply to your case. As such, if you have a claim for workers' compensation, you may want to get a handle on how much time you have to file your claim, and you may want to file it as soon as possible.

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