Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is a serious mental health condition that can affect those who experience a shocking, scary, or dangerous event, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). It can affect soldiers, tragedy survivors, injured workers, or anyone else who goes through a traumatic event.

Those who develop PTSD due to an event that occurred at work may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act (“the Act”). The Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. have successfully represented those who have sustained physical as well as mental injuries from work.

Symptoms of PTSD

PTSD symptoms vary, depending on both the nature of the traumatic event and the person who experienced it. According to the NIMH, someone must have had the following symptoms for at least one month to be officially diagnosed with PTSD:

  • At least one re-experiencing symptom – Includes flashbacks, nightmares, and frightening thoughts that interfere with a person’s daily routine.
  • At least one avoidance symptom – Such as avoiding places, things, thoughts, or feelings that remind the person of the traumatic event.
  • At least two arousal and reactivity symptoms – Usually constant and not triggered by a single reminder, such as being on edge, suffering from insomnia, and displaying uncontrollable anger.
  • At least two cognition and mood symptoms – Includes impaired memory, feelings of guilt or blame, and loss of interest in activities the person used to enjoy.

Workers’ Compensation Claims for PTSD in Pennsylvania

The laws regarding workers’ compensation vary from state to state. In Pennsylvania, both physical and mental injuries are compensable under the Act. There are three standards for proving a mental injury workers’ compensation claim in Pennsylvania:

  • Physical/Mental Standard – This requires injured workers to prove that their work-related physical injury caused their mental injury. The physical injury need not have been disabling or resulted in wage loss; rather, the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board (“the Appeal Board”) has clarified that the worker is only required to prove that the physical stimulus caused their psychological condition. Claimants have been able to recover workers’ compensation for PTSD even when they had minor physical injuries, such as contusions and muscle discomfort.
  • Mental/Physical Standard – In these cases, claimants must prove that a work-related psychological stimulus caused their physical injury. The Appeal Board has explained that, in order to be compensable, the physical injury must both continue even after the psychological stimulus is removed, and result in disability or loss of earning power.
  • Mental/Mental Standard – Claimants bear the heaviest burden when trying to prove that either a single psychologically traumatic event or a perpetually stressful working condition resulted in their mental condition. They must prove that the trauma was caused either by an extraordinary event or working under abnormal working conditions.

Payes v. Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board

In this case, the Appeal Board clarified what “abnormal working conditions” means for the purposes of a mental/mental case.

First, the psychological injury must be objectively verified, typically with expert testimony. Next, the psychological injury must be traced to an identifiable source, such as a person or event. Finally, the incident must have been abnormal for the job.

Firefighters, law enforcement, and other emergency personnel face traumatic situations that are abnormal for most people. However, they regularly encounter these situations as part of their job. Therefore, those types of events are not typically compensable. It must be shown that the triggering event was extraordinary and unusual for claimants belonging to inherently stressful or dangerous professions in order to recover workers’ compensation for PTSD caused by a workplace psychological trauma.

Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Attorneys at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Workers Obtain Compensation for PTSD

If you are suffering from PTSD caused by an event that occurred at work, contact a skilled Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. For over 35 years, our experienced lawyers have represented injured workers. PTSD workers’ compensation cases can be extremely complex, especially when proving the mental/mental standard. To discuss your case, please fill out our online contact form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW (888-748-8529).

We proudly represent injured workers in Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, Philadelphia County and throughout Pennsylvania, including those in the communities of Abington, Ambler, Ardmore, Bala CynwydBensalem, Clifton Heights, Crum Lynne, Darby, Downingtown, Doylestown, Drexel Hill, Essington, Folcroft, Glenolden, Haverford, Havertown, Holmes, Kutztown, Lansdowne, Media, Merion Station, Morton, Narberth, Norristown, Norwood, Philadelphia, Prospect Park, Quakertown, Reading, Roxborough, Sharon Hill, Upper Darby, West Chester and Wynnewood.

Testimonials

“I am 110% Happy”

Larry Pitt's team is very professional. I am 110% happy with the outcome of mt case.

 

Melissa Yonkers

hreview
5.0
2019-01-18T13:32:01+00:00

Melissa Yonkers

Larry Pitt's team is very professional. I am 110% happy with the outcome of mt case.  

“Very Professional”

Answered or returned calls and emails in a timely fashion. The employees at this firm are working for us the employee, not the employers. Very professional.

Anna Diaz

hreview
5.0
2019-01-15T14:51:34+00:00

Anna Diaz

Answered or returned calls and emails in a timely fashion. The employees at this firm are working for us the employee, not the employers. Very professional.

“They Go Above and Beyond”

The staff of Larry Pitt & Associates cannot be more helpful when going through a tremendously tough time. They are there for you and have answers for you before you even ask. They go above and beyond and are always on top of their game. Their time, consideration and professionalism are more than anyone can ask for. Highly recommend them and their services they provide!

Terri Delaney

hreview
5.0
2018-12-10T13:17:05+00:00

Terri Delaney

The staff of Larry Pitt & Associates cannot be more helpful when going through a tremendously tough time. They are there for you and have answers for you before you even ask. They go above and beyond and are always on top of their game. Their time, consideration and professionalism are more than anyone can ask for. Highly recommend them and their services they provide!

“Best Worker’s Compensation Law Firm in Pennsylvania”

If you're in need of a Worker's Compensation lawyer, do not doubt that Larry Pitt and Associates is the Best Worker's Compensation Law Firm in Pennsylvania

Ryan Hoffman

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T18:57:03+00:00

Ryan Hoffman

If you're in need of a Worker's Compensation lawyer, do not doubt that Larry Pitt and Associates is the Best Worker's Compensation Law Firm in Pennsylvania

A friend recommended Larry Pitt and associates to me after being hurt at work.

A friend recommended Larry Pitt and associates to me after being hurt at work. They were incredibly compassionate and handled my case professionally with an outstanding outcome.

D.R., client

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T16:12:21+00:00

D.R., client

A friend recommended Larry Pitt and associates to me after being hurt at work. They were incredibly compassionate and handled my case professionally with an outstanding outcome.

“Thank you for being so professional..”

"Thank you for being so professional in the way you and your staff handles my case. I am a little late showing my appreciation, but thank you so much. If I ever need someone to represent me again, you would be the ones!"

Annette P. Walls

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T15:51:00+00:00

Annette P. Walls

"Thank you for being so professional in the way you and your staff handles my case. I am a little late showing my appreciation, but thank you so much. If I ever need someone to represent me again, you would be the ones!"

“I want to thank you for your excellent representation”

"I want to thank you for your excellent representation of me and keeping your word. You asked me to hold on and things would be resolved in the Spring, and they were. Ariana’s graduation was beautiful and I was able to give her everything I wanted, including her class ring.

Also and not forgotten, Luba! She was so patient and attentive to me even when I was hysterical. Ha! Ha!"

Dierdre P.

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T15:49:51+00:00

Dierdre P.

"I want to thank you for your excellent representation of me and keeping your word. You asked me to hold on and things would be resolved in the Spring, and they were. Ariana’s graduation was beautiful and I was able to give her everything I wanted, including her class ring. Also and not forgotten, Luba! She was so patient and attentive to me even when I was hysterical. Ha! Ha!"

“Thank you so much for hearing my cry for help!”

"Thank you so much for hearing my cry for help! You have always been there and I feel very comfortable with this Firm. It is wonderful people like you that makes me feel so Proud of Larry Pitt & Associates. Once again Thank You!"

John Rodriguez

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T15:49:08+00:00

John Rodriguez

"Thank you so much for hearing my cry for help! You have always been there and I feel very comfortable with this Firm. It is wonderful people like you that makes me feel so Proud of Larry Pitt & Associates. Once again Thank You!"

“I want to thank you for representing me and for everything you guys have done for me.”

"I want to thank you for representing me and for everything you guys have done for me. I am extremely happy with the outcome-especially since my boss didn't show up at the final hearing. Thanks for your patience and understanding and most of all-compassion. I truly appreciate all your help."

Jennifer Kitz

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T15:48:34+00:00

Jennifer Kitz

"I want to thank you for representing me and for everything you guys have done for me. I am extremely happy with the outcome-especially since my boss didn't show up at the final hearing. Thanks for your patience and understanding and most of all-compassion. I truly appreciate all your help."

“Life is much more than business. But, business is about relationships..”

"Peace & blessings to you, sir. With a lot of prayers for you and your family. Life is much more than business. But, business is about relationships. Mr. Pitt, I honor ours. Please sir, let’s keep in touch from time to time."

Salin Muhammed

hreview
5.0
2018-11-16T15:46:15+00:00

Salin Muhammed

"Peace & blessings to you, sir. With a lot of prayers for you and your family. Life is much more than business. But, business is about relationships. Mr. Pitt, I honor ours. Please sir, let’s keep in touch from time to time."
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