The Defense Base Act (DBA) is a vital piece of legislation that offers protection and financial support to civilian employees working on overseas military bases. With 30 years of experience handling DBA and Longshore claim lawsuits, the Grossman Attorneys at Law can help you understand how this act may cover mental health claims and psychological injuries.
What Is A Psychological Injury?
A psychological injury is defined as an emotional, cognitive, or psychological issue that affects a person’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. In general, psychological injuries result from how a person processes certain situations they have experienced. Such issues include but are not limited to depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Are Psychological Injuries Covered Under The Defense Base Act?
Yes. A psychological injury is one type of injury that is covered under the DBA. However, to receive financial compensation for a psychological injury, the injury must meet certain criteria. The employee and their attorney must be able to demonstrate a direct connection between the injury and the individual’s workplace environment or incident.
Coverage is provided through a workers’ compensation insurance carrier, offering injured employees medical benefits, lost wages, and other financial assistance. It is important for claimants to understand their rights and responsibilities when filing a claim to ensure they receive all available benefits under the law.
The following are some key points to consider when filing psychological injury claims under the DBA:
- A licensed healthcare provider must diagnose the condition and provide evidence linking it to an incident experienced at work.
- Evidence must be gathered, including medical records, witness statements, and other relevant documents.
- The claimant must file with the U.S. Department of Labor within one year from the date of diagnosis.
- The claimant must prove that their psychological injury was caused by an event or circumstance during employment overseas.
Signs And Symptoms Of A Psychological Injury
The following symptoms may be indicative of a psychological injury:
- Anxiety: A feeling of unease or fear about what might happen.
- Depression: A prolonged period of sadness, lethargy, and lack of interest in activities.
- PTSD: An anxiety disorder that can be triggered by experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event.
- Insomnia: Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep at night.
- Memory Loss: Difficulty remembering recent events or facts learned before the injury.
Workers who have experienced these symptoms due to working abroad may be eligible to file for workers’ compensation benefits. If an individual is suffering from any of the above symptoms, it is essential they seek medical help immediately and that they keep records of all medical documents related to the condition. This type of documentation can be extremely valuable for a DBA claim.
What Types Of Psychological Injuries Are Covered Under The Defense Base Act?
There is a wide variety of psychological injuries covered under defense base act claims, including:
- Adjustment disorder
- Acute stress disorder
- Panic attacks
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Memory impairments
- Other conditions caused by emotional trauma
The DBA provides that an insurance company must pay all reasonable and necessary medical treatment expenses incurred in connection with any claims arising out of employment overseas. It also requires the insurance company to provide a lump sum payment for permanent disability caused by psychological injury.
If you are unsure if you have a defense base act claim, contact our DBA attorney today. We can help assess your psychological issues and get you the compensation and medical treatment you deserve.
Have You Suffered Psychological Injuries From Working Overseas?
The DBA compensates for physical and psychological injuries suffered by employees working abroad under United States government contracts. If you or someone you know has experienced any type of psychological injury while working overseas, it is crucial to seek legal advice from experienced DBA lawyers like The Grossman Attorneys at Law to determine eligibility for Defense Base Act benefits. With expert legal guidance, individuals can pursue a psychological injury claim and get the compensation they deserve. Contact our law firm today for a free consultation!