FREE CONSULTATION (314) 361-4300

MCL Tear and Workers Compensation Benefits

Attorney James M. Hoffmann has spent most of his over 20-year legal career protecting injured workers’ rights.

The medial collateral ligament, or MCL, is a tissue band connecting the thighbone to the lower leg from behind the knee. It is also a connective tissue that prevents the knee from bending inwards. A tear in the MCL is very painful and interrupts your walking ability.

The most common cause of this type of knee injury is sudden and severe pressure to the front of the knee, such as falling onto all fours onto a hard surface. Other injuries, including an ACL tear, often accompany it. If you injure your MCL in an accident at work, you will notice pain and swelling almost immediately, slowly increasing as it becomes harder to move your knee.


If you have suffered such an injury from an accident at work, your employer is responsible for covering the cost of medical care to repair it. Workers’ compensation works like no-fault insurance, taking care of injured employees regardless of how the injury occurred. If you are unsure how to file a claim or think your employer is not paying the full benefit you are entitled to, schedule a consultation with James M. Hoffmann. Having helped hundreds of Missouri employees with knee injuries in the past, he has the knowledge needed to ensure that you are receiving the benefits you deserve.

Who is at Risk for an MCL Tear?

MCL tears do not occur only from workplace accidents. Many workers who spend extended amounts of time on their knees can also develop an overuse injury to the ligament, causing an MCL tear. This would include plumbers, carpet layers, and contractors who install decking and flooring. With an overuse injury, the pain may develop slowly over time, masking that you have developed an injury to the knee.

If you are at risk for this type of injury and find it increasingly difficult to walk without over-the-counter pain medications, talk with your employer about having your knee examined. They should provide a list of medical facilities and doctors within their workers’ compensation network to give you a complete examination and treatment if necessary.

Diagnosing an MCL Tear

Common Symptoms:

  • Knee swelling.
  • Pain in the knee.
  • Joint locking.

Diagnostic Process:

  1. Initial Consultation:
    • Questions about occupation and accident circumstances.
  2. Physical Examination:
    • Checking a range of movement.
    • Looking for signs of swelling.
  3. Imaging Exams:
    • To assess the extent of damage.
    • To check other areas of the knee for injuries.

Treatment for an MCL Tear

Initial Treatments:

  • Reduced activity.
  • Application of ice.
  • Anti-inflammatory medication.

Supportive Measures:

  • Use of crutches.
  • Wearing a knee brace until recovery.

Work Impact:

  • Possible inability to work during recovery.

Severe Cases:

  • Surgery may be required for severe tears with additional knee injuries.
  • Workers’ compensation may cover surgery and rehabilitative therapy costs.

MCL Tears and Your Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Whether from a sudden accident or overuse in conjunction with your occupation, your employer’s work comp carrier is responsible for paying for all medical treatments for an MCL tear. This includes a percentage of your wages lost as you are treated and recover from the knee injury.

James Hoffmann has practiced workers’ compensation law for over 20 years. We have represented clients who have suffered all types of work-related injuries and have a strong history of helping injured workers get the medical attention and financial compensation that they need.

Contact our St. Louis, Missouri, worker’s compensation law firm to protect your rights. Please call us at (314) 361-4300 or complete our Online Case Evaluation Form.

Work-Related Injuries