Atlanta Workers’ Compensation Attorneys – FAQs
Our Lawyers Help You Understand Workers’ Comp
While anyone injured during their employment can file a workers’ compensation claim with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation, it is usually best to do so with the help of an experienced lawyer. Georgia workers’ compensation law is complicated and it is easy to make mistakes. That is why the attorneys at Cummings & Middlebrooks, LLP, have dedicated their careers to guiding injured workers through the entire process, no matter what the situation.
What is workers’ compensation?
To take the uncertainty out of the circumstances following a work-related injury or industrial illness, the workers’ compensation system provides a reliable source of benefits for the injured worker. Broadly, if the injury occurs during the course of employment, regardless of whether the employer was negligent or otherwise at fault, the worker is entitled to benefits that may include wage replacement, medical treatment or other assistance.
The employee is not allowed to sue the employer for the injury and the employer must carry insurance or otherwise legally provide a means to cover workers’ compensation expenses. Most employers are subject to the workers’ compensation system and are required to carry workers’ comp insurance, although employers with less than three employees are exempt.
What types of injuries or diseases are covered?
Virtually all types of work-related physical injuries and industrial illnesses are covered by workers’ compensation. Very commonly covered conditions include repetitive use injuries like carpal-tunnel syndrome (CTS), joint injuries (elbow, shoulder, knee, and hip), back and neck injuries, wrist/hand and ankle/foot injuries, traumatic injuries, wounds, or bodily reactions to substances. Psychological problems can be covered if accompanied by a physical injury, and an aggravation of a pre-existing condition can also be covered as long as the aggravation persists.
What types of benefits are offered?
Available benefits include compensation for medical expenses and disability benefits to replace wages, at least in part. If the claim is deemed compensable, 100% of medical-related expenses are covered, including travel to and from medical destinations. Income benefits range from Temporary Total Disability (TTD) and Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) benefits to Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) benefits. For more information, refer to our income benefits page.
Death benefits are available to surviving dependents of workers who die from occupational injury or disease. For more information, refer to our catastrophic injury page.
What steps should I take if I am injured at work?
You should always obtain emergency medical treatment immediately. Give notice of the injury or disease to your employer as soon as possible. Georgia law requires you to notify your employer within 30 days of your accident.
Contact the knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorneys at Cummings & Middlebrooks, LLP, to assist you with filing a formal claim with the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation to insure you receive all benefits to which you may be entitled. Remember, insurance companies and their attorneys do not have to teach you the law or advise you of your rights.
Can I choose my own doctor?
Whether you can choose your own doctor depends on several factors. Emergency treatment is allowed without any need for consultation with the employer or insurer. Beyond an emergency, the choice of treating physician may belong to the employee or the employer depending on the situation. Sometimes the employee is required to choose from a list of medical providers compiled by the employer while other times the employee may choose any physician to provide their treatment.
What if my work injury was not caused by my employer, but by another party?
If you are harmed in the course of employment, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits regardless of the cause. You may be able to sue a third party that caused the injury, such as the manufacturer, distributor, or seller of faulty equipment or the negligent driver who caused the motor vehicle accident. For assistance evaluating a potential third-party suit, contact the attorneys of Cummings & Middlebrooks, LLP.
Disclaimer: This site and any information contained herein is intended for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.