Depending on the conditions under which you work, you might find that you’re facing a handful of occupational hazards, or resulting injuries. While some may not be very serious, others can have a life long impact. If you work in factories, or construction sites, you might be exposed to loud noises on a daily basis. For this reason, among others, hearing loss can be a potential lifelong work injury that you receive. If you find yourself suffering from any degree of hearing loss as a result of the workplace, it might be a good idea to speak with an attorney about what actions you can take to compensate for your loss of quality of life.
Hearing Loss as a Work Injury
The state of North Carolina has some guidelines in place for how to deal with these cases. Like many other diseases and injuries, your hearing issues can be a direct result of your work environment. Therefore, employees may be able to receive workers comp for this. But there are some stipulations in these cases.
Total vs partial hearing loss. Permanent sensorineural loss of hearing in both ears would result in workers comp. In short, all that means is permanent deafness due to damage in the ear caused by exposure to a loud noise. In this case, an employees may receive up to 150 weeks of workers comp. That means around 2/3 of the employees weekly salary paid out for 150 weeks.
Partial hearing loss. In the case of partial hearing loss, the employer will only pay for any hearing lost while working at the company. For instance, most companies will ask a new employer to take a hearing test before beginning work. Therefore, they will compare the pre-test to a current test.
Loss in both ears. In order to receive workers comp, an employee must suffer loss in both ears. If an employee only experiences a loss of hearing in one ear, then he will not be eligible for workers comp.
Like many other injuries, hearing loss can leave you eligible for workers comp. However, having an attorney in place can help you make that determination. We wish you luck in facing this issue, and offer our condolences for you loss of quality of life.