Work injuries are very common. Every day, thousands of people sustain some form of injury that happened while they are at work. Injuries are not just limited to jobs that are typically considered high risks like occupations at construction sites or industrial settings.
People who work in an office setting can also sustain injuries like tripping and falling at the workplace. When a worker gets hurt while he is working, and the injuries resulted in a loss of income and incurrence of medical expenses, he is entitled to claim benefits through workers’ compensation.
Most employers in the state of Georgia who employ more than two employees, whether they work full-time, part-time, or seasonally, are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance.
If you get hurt on the job and are not receiving the benefits that you are legally entitled to, contact the Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition in Marietta, GA, right away. Our team of experienced attorneys will help you get the benefits that you rightfully deserve.
Table of Contents
What Type Of Injuries Are Compensable?
The state of Georgia provides a very broad definition of the kinds of injuries that are compensable. Basically, if an injury was the result of your performing some part of your work, that injury is covered. Also, the injury has to have occurred during a time when you were assigned to or expected to work.
In other words, if you got hurt while you are performing a task that is part of your job responsibility when you are scheduled to work, your injuries should be covered.
The types of injuries can vary widely and are not limited to the following:
- Physical injuries resulting from tripping, slipping or falling
- Muscle strains and sprains from lifting heavy items
- Injuries to muscles or tendons from repeating a motion over a long period of time (e.g. carpal tunnel syndrome)
- Head concussion from a heavy object falling from a high shelf
- Cuts and lacerations from equipment operation
- Electrocution from wiring
- Respiratory problems and other illnesses resulting from exposure to unhealthy elements in the workplace environment (e.g. chemicals, pollutants, fumes, etc.)
- Injuries from car accidents on the job when driving is part of the regular job responsibilities
- Catastrophic injuries like amputations, head trauma, paralysis, serious burns
What if you have an old injury, and the job that you were doing made it worse? The good news is that according to Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws, the additional injury that you sustained as a result of your work is covered.
For example, you have allergies. However, the poor air quality in the workplace exacerbated your allergies and now you have asthma and breathing problems, and you need additional medical treatment.
You also became too ill to work. In this case, you are entitled to workers’ compensation which will cover treatment for the additional breathing problem that you experienced (but not cure your allergies which already exist), and you should be able to claim lost wages as a result of your taking time off work to recover.
With that in mind, there are instances when injuries that occurred on the job are not covered.
- You got hurt because you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- You acted in a way that was construed as misconduct
- You got into a physical fight with someone
- You got hurt during your lunch hour or break (These time frames are considered “off the clock” and therefore not covered under workers’ compensation. However, if you were instructed to do something for work during your lunch hour, and you got hurt, that would be covered.)
If you are ever unsure whether your injuries are compensable, contact our office and discuss your situation. Our attorneys will help you understand what your rights are.
What Kinds Of Benefits Can You Claim?
The workers’ compensation laws in Georgia are very clear. If you got hurt while working, you may get benefits that will help you recover and get back to work. The benefits include partial income replacement, paid medical expenses, and pain rehabilitation programs.
It is important to note that the medical treatment that you receive must come from a doctor who is approved by your company or by the insurance carrier. Your employer should provide you with a list of at least six medical specialists who are authorized to treat workers’ compensation injuries. If you get treatment from a doctor who is not authorized by your company, your medical expenses may not be covered.
You can claim expenses for medicines, therapy, tests, surgeries, and all medical appointments related to your work injury.
Your financial compensation is two-thirds of your average weekly wages if you are off work for more than seven days. Benefits start on the second week. However, if you are unable to work for 21 consecutive days, you are covered starting with the first week.
When Do You Have To File For Workers’ Compensation In Georgia?
When you are injured at work, you should report it to your employer as soon as you are able to. Include all the details relating to the accident, and include any co-workers who saw what happened if they are reliable witnesses. You have 30 days to report this, but do not wait that long.
After you report your injury, you have 12 months from the date of your injury to file your claim. Your employer is supposed to do that. However, if you feel that they are not acting in your best interest, contact our office and we will represent you in your claim.
Exercise Your Rights To The Benefits That You Deserve
When you get hurt on the job and are not getting the compensation that you are entitled to, let our expert attorneys at Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Coalition in Marietta, GA, represent you in your case. We will deal with the legalities and fight to help you get the maximum benefit that is rightfully yours.
Leave the work to our attorneys while you focus on your recovery, and get the peace of mind knowing you have the best attorneys working on your side.