If you’ve never suffered an on-the-job injury before, it’s likely that you don’t know what the Workers’ Compensation Claims Process in Fayetteville, GA entails. You may not know what kinds of injuries are eligible for benefits, and you may not be aware of what you need to do if you are hurt at work.
You shouldn’t have to be an expert in order to access workers’ compensation benefits, and when you work with Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition, you don’t have to be. If you work with us, you can focus your attention on your recovery while we handle your claim for you.
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How Can I Know If My Injury Will Be Covered By a Workers’ Comp Claim?
If the injury you’ve sustained is job-related, there is a high likelihood that the injury is compensable. Injuries related to accidents, repetitive stress injuries, and illnesses caused by exposure to hazardous materials are all eligible for benefits. While mental health injuries are covered by workers’ comp in some states, they are not covered in Georgia.
Although your injury will need to be work-related to qualify for benefits, it does not necessarily need to occur on the job. Many types of injuries that take place away from your workplace are compensable, including injuries at work-sponsored events and accidents that occur when you are traveling at the request of your employer. Injuries that occur during your commute are not covered.
In most cases, your injury will be covered even if you are the one at fault. With that said, if you were roughhousing with a co-worker or were using drugs or alcohol on the job, and these actions contributed to your injury, you may be denied benefits.
Workers in Georgia may also be able to collect benefits for injuries related to a pre-existing condition. However, it must be established that your work duties aggravated the condition. As an example, if you fall down the stairs at work, and that fall causes an old knee injury to flare up, that injury is likely to be covered. Since your work duties will have aggravated your injury rather than caused it, you may only be able to collect Temporary Total Disability (TTD) benefits.
Even if you’re not sure that your injury is covered under workers’ comp, it’s best to report the injury to a supervisor as soon as you can. You’ll also want to work with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney so that you can have your claim assessed by an expert.
How Long Does the Workers’ Compensation Claims Process in Fayetteville, GA Take?
A formal report of an injury must be filed within 30 days in order for the injury to be compensable. If you’ve been diagnosed with a condition that developed over time, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, your injury needs to be reported within 30 days of your diagnosis.
Reporting the injury is only one step in the process of filing a claim. Once you have informed your supervisor of your injury and completed the necessary paperwork, you have one year to file a claim. The statute of limitations for filing a claim may be extended in cases where you were able to continue to work after your injury.
Even though you have a full 30 days to file a report, it’s best not to wait until the last minute to inform your employer of your accident. If you wait to report the accident, it may become more difficult for you to gather evidence that supports your claim. Waiting to file could also lead to a delay in benefits.
How To File a Workers’ Comp Claim in Georgia
After an injury, your first step should be to seek the appropriate medical treatment. Make sure that you are thoroughly examined by a physician, even if your injury doesn’t seem serious. Inform the physician of your symptoms. Request that the physician provide you with a copy of their assessment.
From there, the injury should be reported to your employer. You may be asked to complete and sign an accident report form. If you are on strong medication or are in severe pain, you may want to wait to complete the report until after you are confident that you can complete it accurately.
During this time, your employer should provide you with a Form WC-14, which will allow you to file a report with the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation. If your employer does not provide this form to you, you can also request a copy from the board. This report should be submitted within 30 days.
After your claim has been formally submitted, you will have to wait to see if your claim has been approved or denied. The amount of time it takes to hear back from the state board can vary. If you need access to benefits immediately, a lawyer can help you to speed up the process.
What to Do if Your Workers’ Comp Claim is Denied?
If your claim is denied, you will have the option of filing an appeal. This will require you to submit an additional form to the board. Once your form has been submitted, a hearing for your case will be scheduled within 60 days.
There are a number of factors that can lead to a workers’ comp claim being denied, ranging from failure to meet deadlines, incomplete forms, or a dispute about the cause of the injury. While you are able to appeal a claim denial, this can take time, and there is no guarantee that the appeal will be successful.
That’s why you’ll want to work with an attorney that specializes in workers’ compensation claims throughout this process. When you work with a lawyer, you can avoid delays and mistakes that could lead to your benefits being denied. It will be easier for you to get access to the compensation that you need.
Get Help With the Workers’ Compensation Claims Process in Fayetteville
Getting hurt while performing your job can be stressful. You may end up missing work and incurring significant medical bills after your accident. During this difficult time, insurance companies will look for any reason to deny or limit your payout. An experienced Fayetteville workers’ comp attorney can help you throughout the workers’ compensation claims process.
Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition in Fayetteville, GA handles workers’ compensation cases exclusively, which is why you can count on us to provide all the assistance that you need. We can review your case for free if you call us at 770-796-0919.