Understanding Your Right to Medical Care Under Workers’ Compensation
If you have been injured at work, your first priority is likely trying to feel better. You have every right to get the medical treatment you need to recover and you should get it in concurrence with your workers’ compensation claim. However, when it comes to workers’ compensation, your medical care may not be so simple. It is important that you – or a trusted loved one – understand your rights to medical care during this difficult time. Additionally, an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help ensure you receive the care you deserve.
Am I Entitled to Medical Care Under Florida Law?
Yes. Under Florida workers’ compensation law, any employee who is injured on the job is entitled to benefits of workers’ compensation. This includes medical care that is necessary to helping you recover.
What Does this Care Include?
Workers’ compensation medical care benefits can include emergency medical providers, specialists, physical therapists, and other treating physicians. These benefits can also include any prescriptions that are deemed necessary for your recovery.
Do I Decide What Kind of Care I Need?
No. It may be surprising, but you are not the one who determines what kind of care you need. Instead, your employer and/or the workers’ compensation insurance company will authorize medical professionals, who will subsequently decide on the treatment you need.This is one of the major reasons why it is so important to obtain a competent and experienced workers’ compensation attorney as soon as possible after being injured at work.
Am I Responsible for My Own Medical Bills?
No. Your medical provider should directly submit your medical bills to your employer’s insurer. You should never have to pay for care you receive.
If the Doctor Has Not Released Me Yet, Does My Employer Have to Hold My Job While I Recover?
No. This is one of the most potentially unfortunate, but also important, points to understand regarding your medical treatment. While your employer cannot fire you for pursuing a claim, your employer also has absolutely no legal obligation to keep your position open while you recover.
Is There Anything I Should Know About Talking to My Workers’ Compensation Doctors?
Yes. Your workers’ compensation medical providers can have a significant impact on your claim. For example:
- Whether you need to be referred to specialists, receive physical therapy, and be prescribed medication is the providers’ determination.
- Your ability to receive temporary disability benefits can turn on whether the providers have determined that you can work.
Remember to be honest and forthcoming so that you give an accurate account of your injuries.
What Happens if I Settle My Claim With the Insurance Company and then My Injuries Return or Worsen?
Once your claim is settled, you will be responsible for all future medical expenses. This is true even if the injuries that ail you in the future are the same ones your workers’ compensation previously paid for. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help you make sure you don’t settle your claim prematurely.
Have You Been Injured at Work? Allow Us to Help You in this Difficult Time.
If you or someone you love has been injured while working, we can advocate for you and ensure you recover the compensation you are entitled to while you focus on recovery. The Miami workers’ compensation attorneys at Payer & Associates have significant experience helping people like you. Begin by contacting us today to schedule a free consultation.