Possible permanent injury after tripping over new sidewalk at work...

by Penny
(Vine Grove, Kentucky)

My school building is being remodeled by a local construction company. While entering the newly opened entrance (opened that week), I tripped on the flared curb and injured my knee.

The school office manager helped me get in to a workmans compensation doctor that day. I was on crutches afterwards but still came in to work. I am a teacher and was put on sitting duty by my workmans comp doctor. I am now able to walk and work but unable to kneel or crawl.

Three months and many doctors later I have been told by two orthopedic surgeons that there is nothing they can do for my knee. This is devastating news as I am unable to kneel or crawl at all. I am being sent to physical therapy by my last orthopedic surgeon for 4 weeks, then he wants to see me again.

My workmans comp contact says we should wait and see how the PT goes then we can look at further options. I'm not sure what my options are at this point. What do you think I can do in this situation? Thanks.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Possible permanent injury after tripping over new sidewalk at work...":

Penny (Vine Grove, Kentucky):

If the orthopedic surgeons have told you there's nothing they can do to correct your knee problems, you don't have too many options other than to continue physical therapy.

You certainly have a right to receive workers compensation benefits. With the facts you present it doesn't appear those benefits will be very much, especially because you are able to walk without assistance. How much your not being able to crawl or kneel is difficult to say. If being able to crawl and kneel is an essential part of your job duties as a teacher you may be able to receive a greater amount of compensation. If not, your benefits may be limited.

Unfortunately unless you've suffered permanent injury to your knee any workers compensation settlement will be limited. Your physical therapy and any of your out of pocket costs like medications, crutches, etc. should be covered.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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