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Gaylord & Nantais

Worker's Compensation Attorney

Hearing Loss as a Personal Injury: Tips to Seek Compensation

If you suffer hearing loss caused by another person, it's possible to collect personal injury compensation. These injuries are often caused by negligence in the workplace. Operating loud machinery, for example, can lead to hearing loss, which may be the employer's fault for not following OSHA standards.

Related Article: Hearing Loss at Work: Workers’ Compensation Is Your Savior

Here are more details on seeking compensation for hearing loss:

How Hearing Loss Occurs
Most hearing injuries are caused by either over-exposure to loud noise, head injuries from an accident or exposure to abrupt loud noise.

If you work for a company that deals with public address sound systems, for example, the sound engineer has the master volume turned up while checking levels; it's possible for sound to feed back at an extremely high level without warning. If you are standing next to a speaker, the result can be ear damage that limits your ability to hear certain frequencies.

Employer Responsibilities
An employer is responsible for making sure employees are trained how to use loud machinery properly. They must comply with the manufacturer's instructions as well as OSHA work safety regulations. Your employer must warn you of dangers of hearing damage in your workplace. Hearing loss due to work related activities will usually be covered by worker’s compensation.

Types of Damages
Claims can either be filed against the person or company that caused the damage or the defendant's insurance company. Not all hearing injuries, however, qualify for compensation, as each state has its own regulations.

The plaintiff must first visit a physician and get an examination. The medical bills and lost wages will form the basis of economic damages. You can also seek non-economic damages, which are all other damages that do not relate to specific financial costs, such as pain, suffering and emotional distress. Some states put limits on non-economic damages.

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