Is Depression Considered a Disability in Ontario?
Clinical depression that affects a person’s ability to perform his or her job duties is one of the mental health conditions that the Ministry considers a disability. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), approximately 20 percent of Canadians will experience a mental illness at some point in their lives, yet there is still a large, unfortunate social stigma attached to these types of conditions.
The Prevalence and Cost of Depression in Canada
Approximately 5 percent of Canadians experience major depression, reports the CMHA. Mental illness lacks discretion; it can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, income level or culture.
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) explains that mental illness is the second-leading cause of disability and premature death. (Heart disease ranks first.) It’s so rampant that mental health claims actually comprise 30 percent of the total disability claims in Canada and 70 percent of the payouts.
“Mental health claims are the fastest-growing category of disability costs in Canada,” according to the CMHA. Depression cost our society nearly $9 billion in 2000 as the result of short-term and long-term disability claims, reported a 2006 CAMH study. The World Health Organization proclaims that by 2020, depression will be the single-biggest medical burden on health.
The Effects of Depression on Your Life
Depression can have genetic roots; it can be a piggyback disorder of a major chronic health condition (depression is common among those with heart conditions, cancer, multiple sclerosis, etc.); or psychological damages may be related to a major accident like a serious car accident or a bad slip-and-fall incident.
Major depression can impact every aspect of your personal and professional life. It can affect not only your emotional and cognitive functioning, but also your social and physical functioning. Clinical depression can have the following negative effects.
- affects your ability to work.
- causes major disruption in your family.
- decreases your ability to handle social situations or work-related demands.
- increases the likelihood of developing physical conditions.
- results in lost work days.
- requires extensive psychiatric treatment and counseling.
- leads to a huge economic burden for the victim.
Consulting a Lawyer about a Mental Health Disability Claim
When depression affects your ability to work or impacts your life in a major way after an accident, you might be able to file a mental health claim for financial compensation. To determine your eligibility, consult a lawyer in your area. Your lawyer can explain your options (disability claims, accident tort claims, or other legal action depending on the circumstances), help you compile the evidence necessary to prove a claim, and proceed with the legal process to help you obtain the settlement you need and deserve.
Preszler Injury Lawyers Can Assist Depression Sufferers in Ontario
For legal counsel in Ontario, call the lawyers at Preszler Injury Lawyers. Contact us today to set up a free legal consultation: 1-800-JUSTICE® or use our online contact form.