Under the workers’ compensation laws of Georgia, workers who get injured while on the job are entitled to various monetary benefits. Such benefits are meant to cover the medical costs incurred by injured workers as well as lost wages.
Through workers’ compensation, compensation and benefits for injured employees should be a straightforward, seamless process. Unfortunately, workers’ compensation disputes in Buford can arise.
In some cases, the claim process can become contentious due to various reasons. Employers and their insurers can deny your workers comp claim citing various reasons, including untimely reporting of your injury. That’s why it is important to work with a workers’ compensation lawyer when reporting your injury and filing your claim to ensure that you get it right and avoid denial of the claim.
At the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition in Buford, we are dedicated to offering expert and aggressive legal representation to workers who have been injured while on the job. Reach out to us today at 770-796-0919 to speak to one of our Buford workers’ compensation disputes lawyers to learn more about your rights, responsibilities, and common disputes that may arise in your claim process.
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What are the Causes of Workers’ Compensation Disputes in Buford?
Workers’ compensation is a form of insurance mandated by the government to ensure that workers who get injured while on the job are compensated. Essentially, it eliminates the long and tedious legal process if a worker was to sue their employer to get compensation for their injuries.
However, your workers comp claim may be denied by your employer’s insurance company due to various reasons. Some of the most common disputes that arise in workers’ compensation claims include:
The government mandates every business or company with three or more workers, including part-time workers, to carry workers compensation insurance. In Georgia, independent contractors are not eligible for workers compensation benefits even if they are injured while on the job.
It is not uncommon to have your claim denied if you are working as an independent contractor.
Others who do not qualify for workers compensation in Georgia include:
- Railroad carriers
- U.S. government agencies
- Domestic servants
- Farm laborers
- Workers of businesses or companies with less than three employees.
Outside Scope of Employment
Normally, you would be compensated for injuries suffered while doing your duties or as instructed by your employer. If you are injured while doing something outside the scope of your employment, then your employer may deny your workers compensation claim.
To be eligible for workers compensation benefits, it is important that you stick to your scope of employment or only carry out duties as directed by your employer.
Lack of Causation
For you to be compensated under the workers comp insurance, you must prove that your injuries resulted from a workplace accident, and nothing else. If your employer establishes that your injuries were a result of a pre-existing condition, they might deny your claim citing lack of causation.
If you have a pre-existing condition and have been injured while on the job, it is important that you speak to a Buford workers compensation lawyer before filing your claim.
In Georgia, injured workers are required to report their injury to their employers not later than 30 days from the date of the accident. Further, injured employees should file their workers comp claim within 1 year of the accident. Failure to observe these dates, employees risk losing their monetary benefits.
When reporting your workplace accident, it is important that you provide as much information as possible. Such information includes the date and location of the accident, the body part that was affected by the accident, the immediate symptoms of the injury, and any co-workers that could have witnessed the accident.
Providing scanty information about your injury could result in the denial of your claim.
What Should You Do if Your Workers’ Compensation Claim is Denied in Georgia?
If your workers comp claim has been denied by your employer, you can do the following:
Request a Hearing Before the Industrial Commission
Employees whose workers compensation claim has been denied have 30 days to file an Issues Form with the Industrial Commission to notify them that your claim has been denied. The Issues Form should be filled with the reason cited by your employer for the denial of your claim. It should then be sent to the Commission, your employer, and their insurer.
Contact an Attorney
It is always a smart move to speak to a workers compensation attorney if your claim is denied. Your lawyer will look into the facts of your workplace injury and the reasons for the denial to determine whether the denial was justified.
What are the Types of Workers’ Compensation Disputes in Buford?
The reasons for denial of your workers compensation claim vary depending on the facts of the accident that resulted in the injury. The two most common disputes in these claims are:
If your employer has doubts over the injury you suffered or an occupational disease, then they might cite medical reasons for the denial of your claim. Normally, employers will want to establish whether you had and pre-existing condition that could have been aggravated by the accident.
These disputes arise whenever you fail to follow the rules that govern the workers compensation claim process. Normally, you are expected to report your injury not later than 30 days from the date of the accident and file your claim not later than 1 year from the date of the accident. Other common claim disputes include the scope of employment issues and possible misconduct at the time of injury.
What is the Process for the Appeals and Workers’ Compensation Disputes in Buford?
Appeals for disputes or denial of your workers’ compensation claim can take two forms. First, you can take your case to an administrative law judge for a hearing. If you are not satisfied with the decision of the judge, you can appeal their decision through the Board of Workers’ Compensation, and then to a superior court judge, the Court of Appeals.
And if you still aren’t satisfied with the outcome, you can take your case to the Georgia Supreme Court. Appeals should be done in a timely manner, normally not later than 1 year from the date of denial.
We Handle Workers’ Compensation Disputes in Buford. Call Our Experienced Lawyers for a Free Consultation Today
Your workers’ compensation claim may be denied due to medical or workers’ compensation disputes in Buford. When reporting your workplace injury, it is important that you do it in a timely fashion and provide as many details as possible. In the event that your claim is denied by your employer, it is imperative that you work with an experienced workers compensation attorney.
At the Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Coalition, our firm can help you with the filing of your claim as well as the appeal process if your claim is denied. Call us today at 770-796-0919 to schedule a case evaluation with one of our Buford workers’ compensation attorneys to better understand your rights, responsibilities, and benefits.