Yes, you can get a settlement from workers’ compensation if you go back to work after your treating doctor releases you to resume working. If you refuse to go back to work when your doctor says you can work again, you can lose your workers’ compensation benefits.
Your lawyer can help you fight for benefits, regardless of the types of workers’ compensation injuries you suffered.
What Can a Workers’ Compensation Settlement Include?
Your workers’ compensation usually will not include your medical bills because your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer generally pays those expenses directly to the health care provider. The health care provider cannot charge you a copay or deductible. Also, you are not responsible for any charges above the fee schedule the workers’ compensation program uses.
Some expenses do not get billed directly to the workers’ compensation insurance company. If you incur certain expenses, like mileage, hotels, meals, and other allowed reasonable personal expenses to obtain medical treatment, you can submit a request for reimbursement with documentation. You only have one year to submit reimbursement requests. If the insurer does not pay eligible claims within 15 days, they might have to pay penalties.
Under Georgia law, O.C.G.A. §43-9-220, you can get cash benefits if a work-related injury makes you unable to work for more than seven calendar days, including the day you got hurt. If your injury incapacitates you for at least 21 consecutive days, your income benefits will include the first seven days of incapacity. These are the types of income benefits available for work-related injuries in our state:
Temporary Total Disability Benefits
These cash benefits cover the time right after your work-related injury when your authorized treating physician says you cannot perform your job at all because of the injury and recovery. You can collect two-thirds of your average weekly wage up to the benefits limit.
Most injuries have a duration limit of up to 400 weeks from the date of injury, which gives an injured worker more than 7.5 years to undergo necessary treatment for the injury and recuperate. The 400-week limit does not mean that everyone automatically gets 400 weeks of benefits. When the authorized treating physician releases an employee to return to work, the temporary total disability benefits stop.
Temporary Partial Disability Benefits
Sometimes an injured worker cannot make as much money as before because of the injury. A worker can collect temporary partial disability benefits for up to 350 weeks from the date of injury.
Temporary partial disability benefits equal two-thirds of the difference between the previous average income and the lower current earnings. Like temporary total disability benefits, our workers’ compensation program places a maximum amount of these benefits.
Permanent Partial Disability Benefits
Some on-the-job injuries cause permanent partial disabilities, for which our state’s workers’ compensation pays benefits. Permanent partial disability benefits are not awarded for all injuries, though. Your authorized treating physician will determine the percentage of your ongoing impairment.
Your benefits get calculated by multiplying the number of weeks assigned under O.C.G.A. 34-9-263(c), by the percentage rating of disability and multiplying that number by the temporary total disability rate.
Temporary Total Disability Benefits for Catastrophic Injuries
Temporary total disability benefits do not have a 400-week limit for catastrophic injuries. As long as the injured employee csnnot work because of the harm suffered, injured workers can receive these benefits. Your boss must appoint an expert in handling catastrophic claims to help you manage your medical services and any other assistance you need.
Most work-related injuries are not catastrophic. For purposes of a Georgia workers’ compensation claim, a catastrophic injury is an extremely severe injury. A person who loses an arm, a leg, sight or hearing, or someone who suffers severe burns are some examples of catastrophic injuries.
When a worker dies from a covered work-related injury or disease, eligible dependents can receive workers’ compensation benefits. A surviving spouse and minor children can be eligible dependents.
This cash benefit is two-thirds of the employee’s average weekly wage at the time of the accident, up to the maximum amount. Death benefits can also pay some funeral expenses, up to the limit for this item.
For a free legal consultation, call (404) 888-8888
Can You Get Compensation for a Work-Related Ollness?
Yes, if you contracted or developed an occupational-related disease that meets the eligibility criteria for workers’ compensation coverage, you could make a claim for benefits. Georgia’s workers’ compensation program is not limited to injuries.
Can Your Settlement Include Two Types of Income Benefits for the Same Time Period?
No, you cannot combine benefits. For example, you cannot claim both temporary total disability benefits and temporary partial disability benefits at the same time. When your benefits change from total to partial, the total disability benefits stop.
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Our Team Is Ready to Fight for Fair Workers’ Compensation Benefits for You
If you got injured at work, you should contact a workers’ compensation attorney in Atlanta to manage your case and help you understand your rights and legal alternatives. Filing for workers’ comp is a daunting process requiring knowledge and skills. Moreover, if your claim is denied, you need to partner up with an experienced law firm to build you an appeal.
Bader Scott Injury Lawyers can advocate for you and negotiate directly with the insurer on your behalf. You can call us today at 404.888.8888 to get started. Our representatives can discuss workers’ compensation qualifications with you so you understand your options.