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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Steel Toed Boots On A Diabetic Worker

    Is there anyone out there who has dealt with a claim caused by steel toed boots? I'm a diabetic who had no problems with my feet until I was forced to wear steel toed boots as a requirement of employment. My last day of work was November 9/06. On November 10 I sat in front of a surgeon who decided whether I was going to lose part of my foot. I kept my foot but have spent my time since then fighting W.C.B. over my claim. Anyone with information or resources that can help me in my appeal (which has taken almost three months to get to) would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Unregistered Guest

    Default Re: Steel toed boots

    well i hate to tell you this but your going to lose this battle you were not forced to wear steel toed boots you had the option to quit your employer did not make you wear them osha did. there is nothing you really can do about it

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: Steel toed boots

    In September of 2006 a denial was reversed on appeal based on the decision by the wcb in 1994. We are forced to abide by legislation and not quitting is not a valid reason for denial. If an injury occurs as a result of employment it is valid even if there is a pre-existing condition. My denial was being based on the fact that I brought the hazard on site.(steel toed boots) After a review, they have now stated is that the ulcers are in a location inconsistent with my work duties. This is based on thier medical consultants review of the file. It goes against my doctors assessment and the assessment of a specialist who had actually examined me.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2007

    Default Re: Steel Toed Boots On A Diabetic Worker

    Re Steel Toed Boots.......I was obligated to wear STB's or not come in for work as truck driver. Brought in medical letter stating wide feet now needed custom-made STB's. Medical letter ignored. Had custom-made STB's constructed for me while wearing ill-fitting STB's for 6 weeks which caused injury to both feet, (plantar fasciitis). Lawyer for employer succeeded in proving cause of injury was not STB's but instead a "personal condition". Conclusion: A "personal condition" is the only card the employer can play and will look for every tiny scrap of evidence to support the notion of a "personal condition". Had I do it all over again I would not pursue my case since WCB court was in favor of Employer's 2 Lawyers and Orthopedic Surgeon from the very first minute. And how many injured workers can afford to pay for a Lawyer and an Orthopedic Surgeon, which are both non-refundable expenses regardless of win or loose? My opinion is that WCB is a system that is rotten to the core and prejudiced in favor of employer.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007

    Default Re: Steel Toed Boots On A Diabetic Worker

    Your injury is clearly work-related; it was caused by wearing work boots and working. I understand the IC looks for something to justify denial. Re "personal condition" CA, the ER takes the worker as they find them. The fact that another person (without diabetes) would not have suffered this injury, does not help the IC in the least. Not sure about your state though. Does your state code or case law support this idea that a "personal condition" lets the IC off the hook? I'd definitely ask the IC what book they're reading out of....or maybe they just made up the "personal condition" exclusion on their own.

    You have a very good case (and a serious injury), don't give up.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007

    Default Re: Steel Toed Boots On A Diabetic Worker

    I had the exact same injury caused by steel toe boots and l;ost half my foot. The IC sent me for a QME who found a 75% diabetes 25% work and boots as the cause of my injury. The IC accepted my claim in 2004.

    Below is a paragraph taken from the Physcians Guide to pratices in Californias Workers Manual.

    What Is the Effect of Other Risk Factors on the Cause
    of the Injury?
    Most employees are not perfectly healthy before incurring an occupational injury
    and do not lead perfectly healthy lifestyles. A basic principle of workers’
    compensation law is that the employer “takes the employee as they find him (see box,
    p.25).” The employer cannot avoid liability for an occupational injury by claiming that
    the injury would not have happened if the worker had been in a different physical or
    emotional condition before the accident. Workers who smoke, drink, or do not get
    physical exercise are still entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for their occupational
    "For example, consider a diabetic worker who cuts his foot at work and develops a severe
    infection. As a physician, you may determine that the diabetes increased the worker’s
    chance of infection. You may even believe that a nondiabetic worker would not have
    developed an infection. However, the infection would not have developed at this time."

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