Noise-related hearing loss is a common problem in the United States, with an estimated 30 million people suffering from some form of the condition that results in total or partial hearing loss.
Many people suffer from hearing loss or tinnitus but remain unaware of their legal rights. For example, you may be entitled to compensation if you have been injured by excessive or loud noise for long periods at work and experience hearing loss.
The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC specialize in helping people who have suffered from hearing damage or tinnitus (constant ringing) due to someone’s negligent actions.
Contact our law firm at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone number) or use the contact form today for immediate legal advice. Schedule a free consultation to discuss financial compensation for medical treatment and other damages.
Hearing Loss Injuries
Prolonged exposure to loud noises can cause permanent loss of hearing and tinnitus. If you work in a noisy environment, you may be at risk for developing a noise-related hearing disability.
Were you injured due to inadequate hearing protection and excessive noise exposure, suffering permanent damage? Were your injuries workplace-related by the defendant’s negligence in disregarding regulations?
If so, you can file a workers comp or hearing loss claim against your employer.
Hearing Loss Statistics
- According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), noise-induced hearing loss or disability and tinnitus are the most common work-related injury in the US.
- Hearing loss causes more than $242 million in workers’ compensation costs annually, accounting for approximately 22% of all cases.
- According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), approximately 22 million Americans are exposed to dangerous noise levels in their workplace.
- In 2019, about 22 million workers were exposed to more than eight hours of noise that endangered their hearing health, NIOSH reported on December 5, 2019.
- According to the Hearing Loss Association of America , in Illinois, the rate of hearing loss in 2019 was 8.6 cases per every one thousand people over eighteen, compared to an average across the US of 8.8 incidents for every 1,000 people.
- In Chicago, the rate of different types of hearing loss that year was 10.5 cases per 1,000 people.
- Noise exposures are often due to loud machines, power tools, and weapons law enforcement officers use.
- OSHA reported that two million workers had permanent hearing loss and about two-thirds of those cases were due to noise.
Total or Partial Hearing Loss Statistics
- According to medical records, nearly 35 million Americans have some degree of hearing loss.
- Most people with a hearing disability are between the ages of 40 and 64, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) .
- Only one in five people with a hearing injury can benefit from a hearing aid to improve their life.
- Total or partial hearing loss is more likely to occur in older adults.
- Ear infections and lengthy exposure to equipment or machinery that emit loud noise can also cause significant hearing loss in children.
- Old age is the most common risk factor for total or partial hearing loss (nearly thirty percent of Americans between 65 and 74 have experienced high-frequency hearing loss).
Sensorineural Hearing Loss Versus Conductive Hearing Loss
Sensorineural hearing loss occurs when there is damage to the cochlea, auditory nerve, inner ear, hair cells, or higher levels of the hearing pathway in the brain that processes sound.
Those who experience sensorineural hearing issues can have ringing in their ears (tinnitus), and sounds might seem too loud or too quiet. Common causes of sensorineural hearing impairment or tinnitus are:
- Noise exposure (including music)
- Autoimmune disorders
- Head and neck trauma
- Certain types of ototoxic chemicals
- A design flaw in some earplugs
Conductive hearing loss occurs due to a physical blockage of sound vibrations at any point between the outer ear (the pinna and external auditory canal) and the oval window at the beginning of the inner ear.
File a Workers’ Compensation Claim
If you have work-related auditory problems, you may be able to file a workers comp claim. To file a workers comp claim, you must prove that your hearing loss is work-related.
How to prove your work-related hearing loss depends on the following evidence:
- A medical diagnosis of the condition and symptoms from a licensed physician
- Proof of your work duties and how they contributed to your problem
- Receipts for any hearing aids or other medical devices to treat your condition or symptoms
- Proof of loss of work due to your hearing issues
- Proof of any expenses incurred as a result of your condition
Workers Comp Filing Deadlines
When seeking compensation through workers comp in Illinois, you must file a notice of your injury with your employer within 30 days of becoming aware of your personal injury.
A petition for a hearing must be filed within one year of your notice of injury or within one year when you knew or should have known the damage was caused by your employment, whichever is first.
Should extenuating circumstances keep you from filing on time, you can file a petition for a hearing within 300 days after you knew of or should have known about the injury.
How much compensation you could be entitled from workers comp is based on your weekly wage during employment, while the average payout for tinnitus depends on the accident that caused the injury.
Speak to a hearing loss attorney to ensure you receive more than the average settlement for your injuries.
Paper Mill Employees File Hearing Loss Claims
Scott Paper employees sued the company, filing hearing loss claims after working in loud environments. One employee stated he sustained permanent noise-related occupational hearing problems from long-term noise exposure.
If your employer fail to warn you that job duties regularly expose you to hazardous noise levels, they could be held accountable for more than medical bills and lost wages through a third-party hearing loss claim.
You could file a worker’s compensation claim through your attorney if your employer did not provide you with appropriate ear protection (defective earplugs).
When the case settled in a 3M earplug lawsuit, the court jury returned with a $77.5 million verdict, the largest litigation verdict in the US. It was a $5 million compensation award with $72.5 million punitive damages.
Hire a Personal Injury Law Firm to Resolve Your Compensation Claim for Medical Treatment, Hearing Aids, and Loss of Income
Are you suffering job-related injuries caused by an excessive noise environment? Were you injured in a work-related accident, such as a car accident, resulting in hearing impairment? Have you suffered permanent disability due to negligence?
Our experienced attorneys can assist with filing plaintiff claims for hearing loss injuries and tinnitus. We can help you pursue the monetary compensation you deserve for your personal injury damages, including medical expenses, medical devices (hearing aids), and lost income.
Many clients can attest we are committed to getting more than just an average settlement or average payout for our clients. Contact our personal injury attorneys at (888) 424-5757 or use the contact form for a free consultation.
Contingency Fee Agreement
The personal injury lawyers at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC accepts all personal injury claims and wrongful death cases on a contingency fee agreement. The arrangement immediately ensures our clients have legal representation without paying any upfront out-of-pocket expenses.
Our law office advances all expenses in resolving the following claims –
- Car accident
- Personal injury
- Work injury
- Wrongful death
- Workman’s compensation
- Premises liability
- Medical malpractice
- Construction accident
- Product liability
We only get paid when negotiating a settlement or winning a jury trial award. Our “No-Win/No-Fee” Guarantee is simple: You don’t pay us any money if we don’t obtain any money in a settlement or jury award for you.
All confidential or sensitive information you share with your lawyer from our legal team remains private through an attorney-client relationship.