Medical Treatment Complications in a Workers Comp case

Date: August 31, 2017

Sam was employed as an a department chair at a local university. Part of Sam’s job duties involved mentoring and advising students seeking degrees in the school’s graduate program. One Fall day, Sam attended a lunch meeting with a doctoral candidate to discuss his thesis. When getting up from the table, Sam tripped and fell injuring his back and leg. Sam’s injury required traction and bed rest. While Sam was convalescing, he developed stress, anxiety, as well as kidney and heart trouble. Unfortunately, these conditions led to aseptic pneumonia that caused Sam’s death.

Question: Do Sam’s survivor’s have grounds to file a Fatal Claim Petition for workers compensation benefits?

Answer: Yes. Sam was able to secure credible testimony from a competent medical expert who opined that the physical injuries led to stress and complications that caused his death. The Judge found that Sam’s medical expert testimony supported a granting of the Fatal Claim Petition.

If you’ve suffered a work injury and have questions about your claim, contact me at or call (570) 347-1011 for a free consultation.

Disclaimer: The above article is for instructive purposes only and each case is fact sensitive.  Consultation with an attorney should be obtained instead of reliance upon the legal issues discussed in this column.

Tom Cummings
Thomas P. Cummings has been a Partner with Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP since 1996 and has been with the firm since 1991. He focuses his practice on workers’ compensation, Social Security Disability and personal injury cases.