We recently received the following question on our website.
I recently suffered a heart attack on the job. Since this is not really an “accident,” am I still covered under Texas Workers’ Comp laws? I do have Occupational Accident (OCC/ACC) insurance.
Heart attack cases are tough to win under Texas workers’ compensation Act because one must prove that one’s work rather than a natural progression of of a preexisting heart disease or condition was a substantial contributing factor of the attack and that the heart attack was not triggered solely by emotional or mental stress factors, unless it was precipitated by a sudden stimulus.
So for example, if a worker is just sitting in the break room and drinking coffee and suffers a heart attack then most likely the heart attack is not covered under the workers’ compensation act. However, if the employee is assigned by his boss to dig a ditch and suffers a heart attack during the job then that likely would be covered under the Act.
These cases are usually very fact specific. Contact our office if you would like to discuss the specifics of your case.