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Can you get compensation if your job causes a disease?

You know that you can get workers' compensation if you're injured on the job. Many times, it's easy to link an incident at work to a physical injury, like a fall resulting in a broken leg, for instance. What if you think your job caused a disease or an illness?

You can still seek compensation, just as you would for an injury. It may be a bit harder to show that your disease was caused by the job itself, but it is possible.

That is important, as there must be a direct link. One of the most common examples is a worker who has cancer or respiratory issues due to asbestos exposure. This type of illness can often prove to be fatal.

If you do seek compensation, the New York Workers' Compensation Board notes that you have to do it within a specific amount of time. You should file a claim no more than two years after the disability occurred. In some cases, you must file the claim no more than two years from the date you knew of the disease and knew it was linked to your employment or the date upon which you should have known both of those things.

You can also seek compensation if you have suffered serious hearing loss on the job. For that, though, there is a three-month waiting period. This begins on the date on which you leave the job entirely or are moved away from the noise causing your hearing loss.

Again, these cases can be complicated when you're trying to firmly establish that connection between the illness and your job. Make sure you know all of the legal rights that you have.

Source: New York Workers' Compensation Board, "Workers' Compensation," accessed Jan. 24, 2018

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