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Debbie - Lawsuit / Dispute Attorney in St. Louis, Missouri\r\nRelationship: Supervised lawyer\r\n\r\nI endorse Matt Nagel because he is a great lawyer. He is smart, hardworking, and insightful. When everone else has gone home, he will still be working for the interests of his client!\r\n\r\nRead More Peer Endorsements...
\r\n\r\n\r\nSidney relays his experiences working with Matthew Nagel as his personal injury attorney after breaking his wrist in a car accident.  He talks about his injuries and the level of communication with his lawyer, as well as Matt Nagel\'s handling of his case.
Litigation Client - Pre-Suit Negotiated Settlement\r\n“My legal situation was stressful and I was frustrated with the amount of time this took from my life, but Matthew kept me consistently informed. I was happy that he kept an open line of communication and was able to avoid litigation through his knowledge of the system and negotiation techniques.”\r\n
Litigation Client - Dealing With Insurance Companies\r\n“Matt Nagel epitomizes what I look for in an attorney. He worked tirelessly to assist me as I navigated a situation with an insurance company, constantly communicating the steps he was taking in a clear and understandable way. He seeks feedback because he is the type of person that always strives to find a better way to accomplish a job. Give him a direction, or even an idea of a direction,
Matt Nagel,\r\n\r\nThank you for all your effort on my behalf. I truly feel you did an outstanding job representing me and I would recommend you and your firm to anyone who was injured and seeking an attorney.\r\n\r\nSincerely,\r\nJohn S.\r\n
Michael W. Trial Attorney in St. Louis, Missouri\r\nRelationship: Worked together on matter\r\n\r\nMatt Nagel specializes in tractor trailer litigation. For tractor trailer cases, you need an attorney like Matt Nagel who has knowledge, expertise, and experience to get the most out of the case. Highly professional and client focused, it is a pleasure to work with Attorney Matt Nagel. \r\n\r\nRead More Peer Endorsements...
Lacy - Criminal Defense Attorney in Clayton, MO\r\nRelationship: Fellow lawyer in community\r\n\r\nI\'ve known Matt since law school. I\'ve had opportunities to see first hand how he goes to bat for his clients. Matt is smart and creative. I give him my highest endorsement.\r\n\r\nRead More Peer Endorsements...
\"Mr. Nagel helped me with my case. He was extremely helpful, and was very flexible about meeting times. He was always available to speak with me, and was friendly and personable while still being professional. He settled the matter to my complete satisfaction - I couldn\'t be happier with the outcome.\"
Stephen - Wrongful Death Attorney in St. Louis, Missouri \r\nRelationship: Fellow lawyer in community\r\n\r\nMatt Nagel has the unique perspective of coming from the defense side of civil litigation. He is a talented lawyer that is quickly gaining a reputation as a formidable plaintiff attorney in Missouri and Illinois. Matt brings experience, dedication, and an unrelenting passion of achieving great results for each of his injury clients. I endorse Ma

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Recent Case Results:

Work Comp Settlement - $447,338

Ambulance Crash Mediation - $190,000

By Matthew Nagel on May 10, 2013

Can I Make A Work Comp Claim For PTSD? Yes.

A common question: “Can I make a workers compensation claim for PTSD in Illinois?”

The answer: Yes.

PTSD Worker Compensation ClaimIllinois workers’ compensation law allows an employee to file a work comp claim for psychological disability, even if he did not suffer a physical injury. This is commonly known as a “mental-mental” claim, and it has not always been allowed in Illinois work comp. Common symptoms of PTSD and other psychological work injuries are blurred vision, dizziness, nausea, heart palpitations or a racing pulse, sweating, and a nervous or anxious feeling that comes out of nowhere. It may feel like a heart attack.

Originally, an employee could not recover under Illinois work comp law for a mental or emotional injury unless he had also suffered a physical injury. City of Springfield v. Industrial Comm’n, 685 N.E.2d 12, 14 (1997). However, in Pathfinder Co. v. Industrial Comm’n, 343 N.E.2d 913 (1976), the Illinois Supreme Court changed the law, holding that an employee who “suffers a sudden, severe emotional shock traceable to a definite time, place and cause which causes psychological injury or harm has suffered an accident within the meaning of the Act, though no physical trauma or injury was sustained.” This created the basis for today’s “mental-mental” claim.

The Illinois Appellate Court further explained this emotional trauma in General Motors Parts Division v. Industrial Comm’n., 522 N.E.2d 1260 (1988). The Court said that compensation “is limited to the narrow group of cases in which an employee suffers a sudden, severe emotional shock which results in immediately apparent psychic injury and is precipitated by an uncommon event of significantly greater proportion or dimension than that to which the employee would otherwise be subjected in the normal course of employment.” “Anxiety, emotional stress or depression which develops over time in the normal course of an employment relationship does not constitute a compensable injury.” Basically, this means that an emotional injury that causes PTSD is compensable if a person is exposed to something above and beyond what commonly occurs in their line of work or that the general public is exposed to. However, the stress and anxiety that naturally occurs at a job and builds up over time is not a compensable injury for work comp.

To prove a PTSD injury under the work comp system, an employee must demonstrate:

  • he was involved in an accident or exposed to an event related to his employment, in which the employee suffered some emotional trauma;
  • the mental injury occurred because of a work-related risk or because the employment placed the claimant at risk of exposure exceeding that of the general public; and
  • the employee’s condition of ill-being was causally related to the accident.

Importantly, this standard does not change simply because the employee has special training or is expected to handle uncommon situations. For instance, even though a police officer receives weapons training and is expected to deal with armed criminals, he can still suffer a severe emotional shock when confronted by a suspect with a gun. The shock experienced by the worker is not judged upon the type of work the employee is trained to do, but evaluated against if his mental injury “would be the reaction of a person of normal sensibilities.” This means that police officers, firefighters, EMTs, and other critical care workers cannot be held to a higher standard before making a mental-mental claim. This is very good news for our first responders that put themselves in harm’s way to save others and protect the public.

Contact An Illinois Injury Lawyer. Matthew Nagel is the founder of this website and licensed to practice law in Illinois and Missouri. You can call Matthew Nagel and the BiState Injury Law Center at (618) 593-8717, email them, or use the contact form to get answers to your questions. All consultations are free.