Skip to main content
Personal Injury Blog

Iowa Supreme Court Decision Lowers Causation Standard To Receive Workers’ Compensation For Purely Mental Injuries

Posted May 29, 2024 in Uncategorized
Iowa Supreme Court Decision Lowers Causation Standard To Receive Workers’ Compensation For Purely Mental Injuries

The Iowa Supreme Court’s recent decision in the Tripp v. Scott Emergency Communication Center case has lowered the burden for workers in Iowa to receive compensation for mental injuries suffered on the job. If you’re working with a Des Moines, IA, personal injury lawyer to resolve your workers’ comp claim, this could mean good news for your case.

Under Iowa law, workers can claim compensation for any personal injuries sustained during their employment, including physical and mental injuries. Previously, the Iowa Supreme Court required workers to prove both medical and legal causation for mental-mental injuries (mental injuries caused by mental trauma). Medical causation means showing that the injury was caused by work-related activity, while legal causation is more stringent. For example, workers had to demonstrate that their stress was greater than the typical stress experienced by others in similar jobs.

This new ruling means that workers no longer need to prove that their traumatic experiences were unusual for their specific job. Instead, if the event was traumatic and unexpected in general, it could be grounds for compensation. The court emphasized that workers’ compensation is a “no fault” system, and workers should not be denied benefits because they work in inherently stressful jobs.

For Iowa employers and insurance companies, this decision means they may see more claims for mental-mental injuries, especially from first responders and others in high-stress jobs. They will need to consider the broader implications of traumatic events beyond just the specific job role when evaluating claims.

What Does This Ruling Mean For Your Workers’ Comp Claim?

Have you filed a workers’ comp claim for mental illness or one for mental trauma not stemming from a physical injury? In that case, you may have more options for compensation and benefits than you previously had.

Here’s how a Des Moines personal injury lawyer can make a difference:

  • Strong Knowledge of Iowa Workers’ Compensation Laws: Personal injury lawyers understand the intricacies of workers’ compensation laws. They know the specific legal criteria that must be met to establish a mental health claim and can ensure that your case is presented in a way that aligns with these requirements.
  • Thorough Documentation and Evidence Gathering: One of the primary challenges in mental health claims is proving that the condition is work-related. Personal injury lawyers gather and organize the necessary documentation and evidence to support your claim. This includes medical records, expert testimony from mental health professionals, and any other relevant documentation that demonstrates the link between your job and your mental health condition. Lawyers also help collect statements from colleagues and supervisors who can corroborate your claims about stressful or traumatic work conditions.
  • Effective Communication with Insurers: Insurance companies often scrutinize mental health claims more rigorously than physical injury claims. A personal injury lawyer can effectively communicate with the insurance company on your behalf, presenting your case in the strongest possible light.
  • Guiding You Through the Claims Process: Filing a workers’ compensation claim can be daunting, particularly when dealing with mental health issues. A personal injury lawyer guides you through each step, ensuring that all paperwork is accurately completed and deadlines are met, reducing the risk of administrative errors that could result in a denial.
  • Legal Advocacy and Representation: If your claim is initially denied, a personal injury lawyer can represent you in appeals and hearings, presenting a compelling case to adjudicators.

Do You Need Help Pursuing Workers’ Comp For Mental Health?

If you have a case for workplace-caused mental trauma, talk to a Des Monies personal injury lawyer from Des Moines Injury Law. We offer a free consultation, so call today.

Team

Start Your Free Consultation Today!


Get the Compensation You Deserve.

    Call Us!


    24/7 Live Answering
    (515) 493-4878">

    (515) 493-4878

    Our Reviews

    Wendy Larson
    Wendy Larson
    Highly recommend Chris Johnston! Was easy to work with, straight forward, capable to take on any challenge, and an excellent communicator!
    Debra Larson
    Debra Larson
    Johnston/Martineau is an excellent personal injury firm. They are very attentive to their clients and take the time to answer any and all questions to ease the process as much as possible, allowing clients to focus on their healing. I would highly recommend them!
    Nicole Smith
    Nicole Smith
    Kamen Rider
    Kamen Rider
    Excellent firm!
    Lucille Johnston
    Lucille Johnston
    Patty Nearmyer
    Patty Nearmyer
    Christopher Cruse
    Christopher Cruse
    Mike Ramsey
    Mike Ramsey
    luchiano Corujo
    luchiano Corujo