Workers' Compensation and Lead Exposure

Exposure to lead may sound like something that should no longer be a threat to American workers, but that’s simply not true. If you became sick from being exposed to lead, could you continue to work and take care of your family? If you had unexpected medical bills or became disabled, how would you manage?

Jobs That Cause Lead Exposure

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are still many jobs that can cause you to be exposed to lead. Common jobs include:

  • Working as an artist (paints and other materials, particularly if they are manufactured in other countries, may have a high lead count)
  • Auto mechanics (car parts are often made with lead)
  • Individuals who work as employees in a battery factory
  • Road crews who repair old bridges (old paint may contain high levels of lead)
  • Gunsmiths and firing range employees
  • Lead refiners, miners, and smelters
  • Employees of electrical product manufacturers
  • Employees of plastic product manufacturers
  • Recyclers
  • Shipbuilders (parts and materials may include lead)

Expose to lead is extremely serious and can make you extremely sick. If you believe that you may have been exposed to a high level of lead while on the job, you should consider filing a workers’ compensation claim.

How Can Workers’ Compensation Help You?

Permanent effects of lead exposure include neurological problems (including ADHD), depression, problems with dexterity, lowered reaction time, poor or lost vision, fatigue, impaired concentration, lowered IQ, and weakness. That list isn’t all-inclusive. You may be unable to work and you may need medical care for the rest of your life.

Workers’ compensation is a safety net put into place by state law. Each state has a law in place that requires most employers to provide workers’ compensation insurance. This policy is free of charge for employees. It can provide many benefits including medical care, partial lost wages, and it may also provide job training if you’re unable to return to your former job.

However, to be able to get any benefits from workers’ compensation for lead exposure, you will first need to file a claim with your employer.

Symptoms of Lead Exposure

Lead exposure symptoms in adults include:

  • Hypertension
  • Stomach pain
  • Constipation
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Problems with mental functioning
  • Pain, numbness, and tingling in your arms and legs
  • Headaches
  • Memory loss
  • Development of mood disorders
  • Miscarriage or premature birth

Lead exposure can affect your entire life. If you believe that you’ve been exposed to lead on the job and that it’s made you sick, you should file a workers’ compensation claim and get medical attention right away.

Get the Benefits That You Deserve

If you have questions about filing a workers’ compensation claim because you have been exposed to lead, you should call a workers’ compensation attorney. A workers’ compensation attorney can help answer your questions and explain the legal process to you. You can learn more about your rights under the law and have an advocate on your side that can help you get the benefits that you deserve.