The Bollinger Law Firm, PC

What to do after a spouse's workplace injury

Couples who experience the loss of one spouse's job often notice that their relationship deteriorates as a consequence. The lack of a steady income can be devastating, but so can the shift in the dynamics of the relationship.

Perhaps you were the one who stayed home to rear the kids and take care of the house. Now, your husband is laid up on the couch complaining about the dearth of good daytime TV programming and yelling at the kids. Is there anything you can do to help the situation?

There just might be. Read on for some helpful suggestions when a spouse has to miss work due to an on-the-job injury.

Encourage him to seek assistance

Whether it's filing for workers' compensation benefits, seeking medical treatment or retraining for a job in another industry, you can support your spouse by encouraging him to be proactive about the situation.

Being off of work due to an injury can lead to feelings of frustration, anger and depression. Sometimes the injured worker is overcome by inertia and helplessness. You can gently remind your spouse that they have options available to them at this crisis point.

Accept the new normal

If the injury was quite severe, your husband may never work again in that industry — or at all. While it's important to remain optimistic about the future, there is no reason to have unrealistic expectations about your spouse's recovery.

If he is left wheelchair bound, for instance, don't discuss when he will be able to return to construction work. Instead, it might be better to help him polish some skills that could lead to additional schooling or retraining in another industry.

Don't downplay the injury

Even minor injuries can bring compensation if they lead to time off of work to recuperate. There's no point in denying the pain or physical limitations the injury caused. Men often think that they must put on a brave front around nurses or doctors, but downplaying an injury to medical personnel can limit the financial compensation to which the injured victim might otherwise receive.

Help keep track of medical appointments

An injured person is often prescribed pain medications that might make them mentally fuzzy and unable to keep up with all of the doctors' and physical therapy appointments they now have. Failing to show for medical appointments after a workplace injury can jeopardize the successful resolution of a claim, so help keep your spouse on track with appointments.

Working closely with your spouse's Charlotte workers' comp attorney can also help to settle the claim in your spouse's favor.

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