Do I have a claim for hearing loss or tinnitus from work?
Lots of people work in loud and noisy environments. If you have lost hearing or have tinnitus due to noise exposure at work, you likely have a viable workers' compensation claim. The benefits for getting an accepted hearing loss claim include hearing aids for life, plus medical treatment. You will also be entitled to a lump sum dollar amount for your permeant hearing loss. This is calculated based on your age, sex, and the amount of hearing loss. It is usually between $7,000 and $35,000.
When can I file a workers' compensation claim for hearing loss?
There are a few caveats to having a good hearing loss claim. First, it must be filed within one year of a doctor (not an audiologist, an actual medical doctor) telling you your hearing loss is work related. Keep in mind this does not include a work sponsored hearing tester telling you that you have hearing loss or tinnitus.
Can I file for work related hearing loss if I am retired?
Yes, a workers' compensation claim for hearing loss can be filed at any time, as long as it has not been more than a year from when a doctor first told you that you have noise induced hearing loss from work.
How do I file a workers' compensation claim for hearing loss?
There are two ways. First, via an 801 form that goes directly to your employer. Second, via an 827 form that you complete at your doctor's office. If you need help filing or are not sure about how to go about it, feel free to call my office for assistance at 503-975-5535.
Doesn't Medicare cover hearing aids anyway?
No, Medicare does not cover hearing aids, though many other insurance providers do. This is why it is so important to file a workers' compensation claim if you have work-related hearing loss. It will provide coverage for hearing aids for the remainder of your life and they can be quite expensive.
Does it cost anything to file a workers' compensation claim for hearing loss?
No, filing costs you nothing. It is essentially making an insurance claim against the workers' compensation insurer for the last noisy employer you worked at.
I'm retired - which of my employers should I file a claim against?
You should filed with the last noisy or loud workplace you had. This can be the last employer or the employer you had five employers ago. It can also be many years after you worked at the workplace.
What do I do if my hearing loss claim is denied?
You will need a workers' comp attorney to assist in appealing the denial. Do not give up if your claim is denied! Claims are denied for many reasons and it is almost always worth it to appeal. You may be able to win your claim, or you can likely obtain a settlement at the least.
You can always call me directly with questions at (503) 975-5535, extension 1.