Back injuries can be some of the most debilitating work injuries you can experience. They can affect your ability to work and your quality of life. They are painful and often keep workers away from their job for longer periods of time than other types of work injuries. Back injuries are some of the most common types of Workers' Compensation injuries.
When you injure your low back, middle back, or in fact, any portion of your back while working, you are entitled to benefits under Iowa Workers' Compensation laws. Low back injuries are significant in the Iowa Work Comp. system because back limitations can have a drastic effect on a person's ability to work. The effect an Iowa Work Comp. injury has on your ability to work is the primary driver of the amount of money the system will pay for a work-related injury.
Entitlement to Benefits
If an employee sustains a permanent back injury, they are entitled to benefits based on how the back injury affects their ability to work and earn money. These benefits are called “industrial disability benefits.” Ultimately there is a determination of how the injury affects your ability to work in percentage terms. If you lose 50 percent of your ability to work, you would be entitled to 50 percent of 500 weeks (amount set by law) or 250 weeks of Workers' Compensation benefits for the injury. Back injuries are frequently pursued under the Iowa Work Comp. system as there are a significant amount of employment positions that are precluded for persons with permanent low back injuries and limitations.
It is important that you tell your employer as soon as possible when you sustain a work injury to your back. You may need medical treatment, and you do not want your injury to worsen. It is best to report your injury in writing to your employer. You are required to report the injury within 90 days of the date of the injury. If you miss the deadline, your benefits may be denied. It is important that you contact an experienced Workers' Compensation lawyer to help you evaluate your case and ensure that you are getting the benefits entitled to you under Iowa law.