When you think of workers’ compensation, you probably think of the types of injuries or illnesses that require hospitalization or time off of work to rehabilitate from a broken bone or a hurt back. But workers’ compensation covers medical expenses and losses from a wide range of damages, including those that are cumulative. A good example of this is hearing loss: many employees end up losing their hearing after extended periods of exposure to high levels of noise or noises that are of particularly high frequency. But because people can suffer hearing loss as a result of aging or illness as well as following environmental exposures in and out of your job, the challenge in proving your claim lies in showing that the loss of hearing came from the workplace. Fortunately, when you have an experienced workers’ compensation attorney working on your behalf, you can be sure that the proper evidence will be gathered to support your case and tell your story. To prove that your hearing loss is a result of your work environment, you need to start with a review of your medical records, and especially of those having to do with your hearing. The older the worker is, the harder it will be to prove that the hearing loss is not age related, but we generally begin with trying to find all hearing test records, or audiograms. You will also have a current test conducted by either an audiologist or an otolaryngologist to determine exactly what level of hearing loss you’ve suffered, and if old records are available to compare them to previous records. If your hearing loss is being treated, then workers’ compensation may pay for your medical expenses in relation to the testing and any procedures or devices that you need. In many cases hearing loss is covered by what is known as a schedule of injuries which spells out the exact compensation for hearing loss based on whether it is in one ear or two, and what percentage of your hearing you have lost. In New Jersey, if you’ve suffered a temporary hearing loss you can get temporary disability payments equal to 70 percent of your average weekly earnings subject to state minimums and maximums. Permanent hearing loss is also reimbursed at 70 percent, even if there are other types of work that can be done. For specific information on your own situation, contact the workers’ compensation lawyers at Malamut and Associates. We have extensive experience in successfully helping our clients get the compensation they deserve for hearing loss.