Foote, Mielke, Chavez & O'Neil, LLC
View Our Practice Areas

Can PTSD be covered as a workplace illness?

When it comes to pursuing workers' compensation claims in Illinois, effectively proving that you sustained a physical injury is generally much easier than illustrating an eligible mental health condition. Unfortunately, the complex nature of diagnosing many mental health problems makes it difficult to achieve full compensation for such workplace illnesses. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, for instance, can have a large variety of contributing factors and triggers, severely complicating the process of linking your PTSD to workplace conditions.

LEXIS-NEXIS discusses the many factors that can be taken into consideration in workers' compensation cases involving PTSD claims, and explains that guidelines for mental health claims vary significantly from state to state. The state of Illinois, along with several others, does accept mental health claims; however, the claim must be based on an unusual stimulus. In such cases, an unusual stimulus is defined as a factor that is atypical for the average person holding the claimant's specific job position. If your workers' comp claim revolved around a stress disorder, for instance, you would have to show that the level of stress you endured on the job was more severe than is typical for other employees in your position.

Discussing PTSD specifically, it is noted that the condition is increasingly difficult to prove in terms of achieving workers' comp. For one thing, there is a subjective element to PTSD that makes it challenging to establish consistent claims standards. Beyond that, it can be increasingly difficult to anticipate and/or manage PTSD. PTSD symptoms are often triggered by psychic or physical trauma, but the condition may have developed much earlier. Therefore, it can be challenging to prove that a work-related incident caused you to have PTSD when you may have experienced profound trauma as a child.

Achieving PTSD-related workers' compensation benefits can depend upon a number of other factors and considerations. The general information provided above is only intended to be educational in nature and cannot serve as legal counsel.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Ask Us a Question or Request a Free Case Evaluation!

Call us at 630-492-1846 or use our convenient email contact form to arrange a free case evaluation. Our office hours in Chicago and Geneva are from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. Evening and weekend appointments may be available by special arrangement.

If you cannot travel to our offices, we are often able to meet with you in your home, hospital room, office or another convenient location.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Visit Our Conveniently Located Offices

10 West State Street
Suite 200
Geneva, IL 60134

Geneva Law Office Map

55 West Wacker
9th Floor
Chicago, IL 60601

Chicago Law Office Map