Teachers’ Compensation

Posted on Monday, March 20th, 2017 at 2:00 pm    

Public and private school teachers provide a valuable service to the residents of North Carolina and Virginia. Like any other workers though, there is a decent chance that they may suffer an injury at work during the course of their career that prevent them from working – either part time or full time.

Some of the ways teachers can get injured are:

  • Slips and falls at work. Teachers can slip on coffee or soda in the teacher’s lounge, muddy water and snow tracked in by students from of doors, or water spills on the school stairways.
  • Supervision accidents. While helping students wait for a bus or supervising after-school activities, teachers can be hurt by oncoming buses or cars or for slips and falls on ice, or for any reason.
  • Coaching. Many coaches participate in the sports they are teaching. Even if they don’t actively play the sport, they engage in athletics maneuvers which cause them to fall, pull a muscle, be struck by a ball, suffer a groin injury, or suffer a host of injuries while supervising the student-athletes.
  • Property accidents. Teachers can get hurt walking across lots or parking lots or any outdoor activity – in addition to doing any indoor activity.
  • Everyday teach activities. Teachers can get injured carrying paper or other heavy loads, climbing ladders, demonstrating how something works, running a science experiment, or for a host of teaching-related reasons.
  • Dealing with violent students. Teachers who suffer broken bones, bruises, bleeding, internal damage, or other harm while dealing with violent students or being the subject of a physical assault by a student or anyone on school property can file a workers’ compensation claim.
  • Exposure to chemical toxins. Teachers can suffer occupational illnesses due to exposure to asbestosis, dusts, molds, and other chemical toxins. Chemicals can cause severe respiratory problems, headaches, dizziness, rashes, cancer, and other short-term and long-term problems.
  • School security. Unauthorized persons on school property or even school shootings have unfortunately not become as rare an occurrence as they once were.

Stress and the teaching profession

Teaching is a very tough profession. Along with the daily chores of teaching and education students, many teachers are required to be disciplinarians and social workers. Memorable teachers are also mentors for their students. While some schools make these tasks easy, many teachers find that overcrowded classrooms, a lack of support for teachers, underfunding, and other problems create a lot of stress on the teachers. Compensation for emotionally-related (as opposed to physical stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome) stress-related work injuries in North Carolina and Virginia is complicated.

One of the main problems in psychological stress cases is proving that the stress was due to a specific incident as opposed to family factors, domestic issues, pre-existing mental problems, aging, or other daily stress factors. As a general rule, psychological injuries without some physical injury or some type of trauma outside the realm of normal experiences, such as a physical assault, terrorist attack, rape, or school shooting—are not compensable.

Stress that escalates into depression or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is more objective than general malaise and fatigue that goes with many jobs – but objectivity isn’t really the key requirement.

Stress or anxiety that is triggered by a specific incident is can be compensable, whereas stress from teaching unruly students is not. For example, if a teacher suffers depression as a result of trying to break up a fight between several students, then there might possibly be a case for work-related stress – especially if the teacher suffered some physical harm while trying to break up the fight.

Contact a skilled North Carolina or Virginia workers’ compensation lawyer now for clarification in the area of teacher-related injury. Attorney Joe Miller has been fighting for injured workers for over 25 years. He has helped thousands of workers get strong recoveries. For advice on your work-relation status and all other work injury issues please make an appointment with Joe Miller Esq. by phoning him at (888) 694-1671 or by using his contact form that appears on his website at www.TheWorkInjuryCenter.com