Studies show that working musicians are nearly four times more likely to suffer noise-induced hearing loss than those in any other profession. In addition, working musicians are 57% more likely to have ringing in the ears – tinnitus – because of their work.
Indeed, we have heard the stories about rock stars having ringing in their ears, with famous musicians like The Who guitarist and songwriter Pete Townshend, Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Ozzy Osbourne, and drummer Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac all suffering from tinnitus of varying severity.
In fact, Pete Townshend is now nearly deaf after decades of cranking up the volume in concert arenas. The late George Martin, the famous producer of the Beatles’ albums, began experiencing hearing loss after long studio sessions with the Fab Four in the 1970s and was nearly deaf when he retired. Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers noticed having a case of tinnitus in the early 1990s after his band toured with Nirvana.
A bad case of tinnitus, however, is not relegated to those famous rockers who played screeching guitar solos and monster drum sets. And if you are suffering from tinnitus because of your work environment then you may be able to receive compensation for that injury.
In this article, we will talk about what tinnitus is, what causes it, and whether you can sue if someone causes your tinnitus. If you suspect that your hearing loss was caused by noise in the workplace, please contact the Law Offices of RITE law today for your Free Case Evaluation. There are no upfront fees, and we will only be compensated once a recovery is made on your behalf.
Our deafness injury lawyers in Jacksonville have your best interests at heart, and we have the training and resources to make sure that you receive the help you need. Our number is (904) 500-RITE or you can fill out our contact form online. Call today.
What is Tinnitus?
Tinnitus is a condition in which a person will hear sound in their ears when there is no actual sound source. The sound in the ear is caused by damage to hairs in the inner ear, called cilia. The damage to the cilia results in the cilia not appropriately sending signals of silence to the brain. Tinnitus seems to manifest in a number of ways, including ringing, hissing, static, roaring, buzzing, or birds chirping sounds.
The volume of the sounds of tinnitus can vary, and if it is significant and constant it can cause other health issues like stress, sleep issues, memory problems, difficulty reading, depression, and anxiety. Thus, while tinnitus might, to most, seem like a minor chronic ringing in the ears, it can actually be severe and even debilitating.
Some of the Causes of Tinnitus
When it comes to workplace-induced tinnitus, the cause can include:
1. Loud factory work,
2. Loud construction work,
3. Certain chemicals in the workplace that are toxic to the ear, and of course
4. Loudspeakers or concerts, which is why those in the music industry are particularly susceptible to tinnitus.
It should also be noted, however, that a personal injury, like a car accident, could also be the cause of tinnitus. For example, the following incidents could be the basis for a hearing loss lawsuit:
1. An explosion,
2. A deployed airbag in a car accident,
3. Any trauma to the head or neck, like in a slip-and-fall accident,
4. An accident with direct injury to the ear or ear canal,
5. Any accident involving extremely loud sounds like a whistle, or heavy machinery, or portable music devices.
Can I Sue for Work-Induced Tinnitus?
The answer to that question is: “it depends.” There are some scenarios in which it is clear who the at-fault party is for your hearing injury. For example, if you work in a work environment in which the noise is over 85 decibels and you are not provided with protective equipment, then you have a good claim. However, as with the rock stars we discussed earlier, if you have the option to wear earplugs but don’t do so, then there may be no at-fault party outside of yourself for your tinnitus.
In addition, hearing loss lawsuits have some challenges. First, tinnitus is an invisible injury, which makes it harder to prove that the injury is serious, or exists at all. Second, causation can be a hurdle. Tinnitus can be age-related, or it can be due to hobbies outside of work. Thus, trying to show that your work environment is the culprit for your tinnitus will be more of a challenge as well.
Speak with a Deafness Injury Lawyer in Jacksonville to Find Out Whether You Have a Case
Hearing loss claims are usually workplace-related injuries, such as Industrial Deafness, Tinnitus, and Acoustic Shock, but can also result from presbycusis or old age.
To receive compensation, the injured must prove that their hearing was intact prior to any industrial noise exposure and that the industrial noise exposure caused the hearing loss. However, you will likely need the opinion of an appropriate medical provider to determine the causal nature of the loss. Whether you sustain a partial or severe hearing loss, you may be entitled to compensation.
At RITE Law, we started the firm for one reason – to help those in Florida and elsewhere have the resources of a firm that was “big enough to fight but small enough to care.” At Rudolph, Israel, Tucker & Ellis (RITE law), we have the resources and experience to go to trial when it is necessary, and we have the wisdom to advise you appropriately.
Without help from the hearing loss attorneys in Jacksonville on the RITE team, trying to make insurance claims can lead to a lot of frustration and time and money lost. When you turn to our firm, we spring into action, making sure every detail of your claim is addressed. We answer any questions you have and stand in your corner to give you the best opportunity to receive all the benefits you deserve.
Expect lots of attention, passionate representation, and a healthy disdain for big insurance companies. We believe that leads to the best result possible. Unlike larger firms, your case isn’t handed to a paralegal or assistant to do the heavy lifting. The attorney you meet initially is the one who will be by your side every step of the way.
Let the Jacksonville hearing loss injury attorneys at RITE Law, help you. When you turn to our firm, we spring into action, making sure that every detail of your claim is addressed. Call us for help. Our number is (904) 500-RITE or you can fill out our contact form online. We provide a free case evaluation, so feel free to call us today.