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Jackson & New Orleans Workers' Compensation / Blog / Workers Compensation / Benefits Available to Outdoor Benzodiazepine Exposure Victims

Benefits Available to Outdoor Benzodiazepine Exposure Victims


The combination of the heat from a gasoline engine and the residue of organic matter, like lawn clippings, creates benzodiazepine fumes. These fumes are one of the most toxic substances known to mankind. Prolonged exposure to benzodiazepine has been linked to a number of chronic, serious health problems, including cancer.

Cancer survival rates have increased significantly since the 1990s. So, even advanced cancer is treatable, at least to an extent. However, the cost of these treatments has also skyrocketed since the 1990s. Many victims might pay $10,000 or more per month.

A Jackson workers’ compensation attorney can obtain the financial benefits these victims need. As outlined below, these benefits usually include money for lost wages and medical bills. An attorney can also help victims overcome some common Claims Examiner objections to these claims, specifically worker classification issues.

Classification Issues

Because of the nature of benzodiazepine fumes, lawn and gardening workers are among the most common victims. These individuals are also the most likely victims to experience classification issues.

Workers’ compensation benefits are available to employees. These insurance companies set rates according to payroll size, as well as some other factors. To avoid paying high premiums, many employers intentionally misclassify employees as independent contractors. That’s especially common for groundskeepers, given the sporadic nature of this work.

In wrongful classification cases, some administrative law judges force the insurance company to provide coverage. The nonpayment of premiums is a matter between the employer and insurance company that does not affect the worker.

In other situations, injured victims might be able to bring claims outside the system and obtain additional compensation. This additional compensation usually includes money for noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium (companionship), emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment in life.

Wage Replacement

Moderate exposure victims are usually temporarily disabled. They cannot return to work until their doctors clear them medically.

Typically, these victims receive two-thirds of their average weekly wage for the duration of their temporary disabilities. If they are able to return to work early but must accept light duty, workers’ compensation usually pays two-thirds of the difference between the old and new income levels.

Severe exposure victims are often permanently disabled. If returning to work is not a medical option, workers’ compensation usually pays a lump sum.

Medical Bill Payment

As mentioned, cancer treatment costs are quite expensive. Workers’ compensation pays all these bills. In fact, the insurance company usually pays medical bills directly. Most victims never see a statement, and they are not financially responsible for unpaid charges.

If the insurance company drags its feet, as is often the case, an attorney usually sends a letter of protection to a medical provider. This letter guarantees payment when the case is resolved. So, the provider charges nothing upfront. Once again, medical bills are not financially burdensome to victims and their families.

This coverage includes other medical expenses as well, such as follow up care, physical therapy, and transportation costs.

 Count on a Dedicated Attorney

Lawn and garden workers are among the most common toxic exposure victims in Mississippi. For a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer in Jackson, contact Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe, PLLC. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.




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