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Can skin cancer be a work-related injury?

It seems like everyone knows someone who either currently has or has had cancer. Not only is it one of the most common types of disease, there are many varieties that can develop, depending on what you may be exposed to. The most common type of cancer that occurs in America is skin cancer, and if you spend much time outside, there is a high likelihood that you may develop it. But what if your job requires you to be outside regularly? Is it possible to claim that skin cancer is work related in order to seek treatment through workers' compensation?

The simple answer is yes, it is possible. however, the reality of claiming that skin cancer is work-related is a bit more complicated than simply saying so. For an injury to be considered work-related, you must be able to demonstrate that the regular duties of your job either caused or aggravated the condition.

Many states will only allow for workers' compensation to treat injuries that resulted from some sort of on-the-job accident. California, however, is a little ahead of the curve in this respect, and does allow for skin cancer to be considered a work-related injury in some circumstances. For instance, if you work as a lifeguard, you may be able to successfully claim that it is work-related.

Ultimately, there is no hard and fast rule that determines what is or is not work related, but rather somewhat fuzzy guidelines. If you are willing to do some due diligence and build a strong team to support your case, the flexibility of these guidelines may work in your favor in California. If you believe that your skin cancer may be the result of your work environment, do not hesitate to seek out the guidance of an experienced attorney who can evaluate the nuances of your situation and help you protect your rights.

Source: FindLaw, "Can I Get Workers' Comp for Skin Cancer?," Le Trinh, accessed Feb. 07, 2017

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Making a false or fraudulent workers’ compensation claim is a felony subject to 5 years in prison or up to $50,000 or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by both imprisonment and fine.

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