Have you been injured at your job? Most people work upwards of eight hours a day, and some people spend more time at their workplace than they do at home or anywhere else. For this and other reasons, on-the-job injuries are common and many people suffer serious, life-altering injuries when they are hurt at work. If you have been injured while working, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits through your employer’s insurance company. At Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz, our Memphis workers’ compensation lawyers can assist you from start to finish, from helping you get the medical treatment you need to getting you compensated for any lifelong vocational disability you may suffer.Receiving Medical Benefits After a Work Injury
All 50 states have enacted laws to protect injured workers and to provide them with legal rights following an on-the-job injury. Workers’ compensation coverage must be provided if an employer has a certain number of employees, usually five. In most states, injured workers are entitled to medical benefits, temporary disability benefits, and permanent disability benefits when appropriate. Temporary disability benefits are the amounts paid out while an injured worker is off work recovering from his or her injury, and permanent disability benefits are the amounts paid out to workers who suffer a permanent impairment or vocational disability as a result of the work injury. Temporary disability benefits and permanent disability benefits are both dependent on the employee getting proper medical attention and treatment through workers’ compensation.
Medical benefits are usually available to any worker who is injured during the course and scope of employment. Workers’ compensation is a no-fault system so the employee is not required to make any showings of negligence or wrongdoing on part of the employer. Instead, the employee just has to show that he or she was injured while working. Most medical costs will then be covered, including emergency treatment (ambulance and emergency room), physician visits, specialist treatment (such as orthopedic), surgical procedures, physical therapy, rehabilitative treatment, medical devices, and even prescriptions. Medical benefits are available at no cost to the employee and generally for as long as the physician or medical provider relates it to the work injury. The worker may also be entitled to mileage reimbursement for trips to and from medical treatment.
All states have notice requirements concerning when a work injury must be properly reported. How long do you have to file your claim? In Memphis and elsewhere in Tennessee, for instance, a worker has 15 days to report the work injury to his or her employer. If the claim is deemed to be compensable, then the employer will provide a panel of at least three independent physicians within the community of the injured worker, and the injured worker is allowed to choose the physician he wants to see. This physician becomes the authorized treating physician (or ATP), and he or she will be the person to decide the course of treatment for the employee, as well as whether the worker should be taken off work or sustains any permanent impairment as a result of the injury.
Since the ATP is given such deference under the workers’ compensation law in Tennessee and many other states, it is important that an injured worker give careful consideration when selecting a panel physician. Our lawyers regularly help workers’ compensation claimants make this selection. We can also help if the workers’ compensation carrier denies the claim outright or delays your medical treatment. Our goal is to help injured employees make as full of recovery as possible and protect their legal rights throughout the process.Consult with an Experienced Work Injury Lawyer in Your Area
Many workers do not know where to turn after an on-the-job injury, and it may be difficult for you to get the medical treatment you need, especially if the employer does not immediately file a workers’ compensation claim on your behalf. If you have suffered harm on the job, call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz. For a free consultation with one of our workers’ compensation attorneys, call us toll-free at 800-529-4004 or complete our online form. We assist injured workers in Memphis and throughout the South, including Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kentucky.