An injury at work can turn your world upside down. In addition to the physical challenges of recovery and day-to-day adjustments in routine, you may find yourself swamped with medical bills at a time when you are unable to work to pay those bills.
The Georgia workers’ compensation program can provide much-needed relief, but the process of filing a claim is complicated and claims are frequently disputed. Fortunately, help is available.
An Alpharetta workers’ compensation lawyer could guide you through the application process to make sure that all deadlines are met and that your application portrays available evidence in the best possible light. If an appeal is necessary, your employment attorney could advocate on your behalf and help you pursue an optimal outcome to your case.
Covered employees who have sustained injuries on the job or contracted a work-related illness or condition may be eligible to receive various benefits. These benefits may cover medical costs, as well as wages lost while an employee is out of work. In certain cases, an employee may even be entitled to additional benefits for a long-term loss of bodily function or disability.
Types of benefits which an employee may receive through workers’ compensation insurance include payments for:
If an employee suffers a catastrophic injury, benefits may be payable indefinitely with the help of an Alpharetta workers’ compensation lawyer. In most cases, however, there is a limit on how long benefits will continue.
Although a worker’s first priority after a workplace injury should be to seek medical care, their second priority should be to notify their employer of the incident. If an employee waits more than 30 days to notify their employer, they may become ineligible for benefits. There is no required state form for providing notification, but injured employees must wish to consult a Gwinnett County workers’ compensation attorney to learn what information to include and where the information should be sent.
Injured employees seeking workers’ comp benefits must file a “Notice of Claim” Form WC-14 with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation in Atlanta and supply necessary medical documentation regarding their injury. In addition, each applicant must undergo an examination by a physician approved by their employer. By law, employers are required to allow access in this context to a Workers’ Compensation Managed Care Organization or provide a list of at least six approved doctors from which the worker may choose.
If a claim for benefits is disputed, the applicant may appeal and obtain a hearing in front of an administrative judge. Further appeals, if necessary, may be made to
the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers’ Compensation, and finally to the Georgia Superior Court and Georgia Court of Appeals.
It is important to understand that most appeals are conducted on the basis of the facts as they were established in the beginning of the application process, so it is crucial to ensure that the right evidence is collected and presented as early in the proceedings as possible. A seasoned workers’ compensation lawyer in Alpharetta could be a great deal of help in making sure this evidence is present and submitted in a timely fashion.
Applicants seeking workers’ compensation benefits are not required to use an Alpharetta workers’ compensation lawyer at any stage of the process, but many elect to do so to ensure that they can provide adequate medical evidence and properly satisfy all relevant legal procedures.
Insurance companies often attempt to dispute workers’ compensation claims to keep their costs low, and they accordingly often employ experienced legal teams to fight claims on appeal. Those seeking needed benefits should have the same level of experience and skill fighting on their behalf.
If you are seeking to obtain workers’ compensation benefits in Alpharetta, call today for a case evaluation to learn how we could help you pursue the full benefits to which you entitled.
With offices in Alpharetta, Atlanta and Marietta, we provide legal assistance to people throughout Georgia and the Southeast in all matters of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and workers’ compensation claims.
We are ready to help you, and offer multiple ways to reach us.