Workers Compensation attorney Phillip B. Shell has been successfully representing injured workers for over 30 years. A true expert on the system and its many complexities, Phil develops creative solutions that provide injured or ill workers with needed compensation while addressing the employer's concerns when possible. Although his first approach is to seek win-win solutions, he will also pursue matters through the Utah Labor Commission and beyond. He has received accolades from Utah Business Magazine and has been a featured speaker at many legal education seminars, and is dedicated to helping sick and injured workers and their families.
Call Phil to discuss your claim. He represents clients throughout Utah as well as many states with Utah-related claims. He has the experience to help you. He is available for appointments during our normal business hours (Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m) as well as during evenings and weekends.
Call or email today to schedule a free, no-commitment consultation with Phil
Links to Additional Information About Workers Compensation
As with any industrial injury claim, the injured worker has the responsibility to report his or her claim to the employer within certain time limits in order for the claim to be compensable. Notice is required within 180 days of when the employee's claim arises. If you wait too long, your claim will be denied and there will be nothing you can do about it. Always seek legal help if you are not certain of what to do.
Under the Utah Code, an occupational disease claim arises when the employee "first suffered disability from the occupational disease and knew, or in the exercise of reasonable diligence should have known, that the occupational disease was caused by the employment."
This notice requirement contains two parts. First, we have the
requirement that the employee must suffer from disability from the occupational disease, and second, the requirement that the employee must know or should know, under a reasonable person standard, that the disease was caused by the employment. Notice must be given within 180 days of these two conditions being met.
It is not necessary that your illness begin during the term of employment. For example, claims arising out of asbestos exposure or exposures to dust and particles resulting in an interstitial fibrosis, or other product exposures, may arise 10 - 15 - or 20 years after the exposure at work, and may still be compensable, so long as the employee reports it to the employer or the Labor Commission within 180 days of first suffering disability - which usually means missing work or having work limitations. This is because although the exposure occurred years ago, the illness and resulting disability may have just arisen. The focus must be on when the disability arose, not when the exposure occurred.
Sometimes a worker may be disabled due to an illness, such as a lung disease, that he and his doctor believe is due to a non-industrial source, such as smoking. However, subsequent testing may reveal that the problem is due all or in part to something such as silicosis or asbestosis - and is work related. Once this information, such as the test results, has been communicated to the injured worker, then the 180-day period begins to run, regardless of when the individual last worked for the employer in question.