In Suwanee, Georgi, your workers’ compensation benefits won’t be cut off if you hit maximum medical improvement (MMI). However, while the benefits can continue after MMI, that could be the point at which it would be advisable or possible to settle your workers’ compensation claim.
If you have a Suwanee maximum medical improvement diagnosis and the workers’ compensation insurance adjuster has asked whether you want to settle your claim, contact our experienced Suwanee workers’ compensation lawyers to discuss your best strategy moving forward.
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What Is Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)?
MMI refers to when your doctor determines that your work-related injury or medical condition won’t improve further. Simply put, it is at the point at which it is believed that no amount of treatment or medicine can help you heal further from your injuries.
MMI isn’t a state of mind or a place that you can physically go to. During your appointment with the authorized treating physician, he or she will determine whether you have improved as much as you are going to from your work-related injury or illness.
Ideally, MMI would mean that you have recovered from your injury or illness completely, but that isn’t always the case. It is possible to reach MMI and still suffer from your injury and perhaps even be left with a physical disability or restriction.
Who Determines When You Achieve Maximum Medical Improvement?
Your employer or their insurance company cannot decide that you have or should have reached maximum medical improvement in Suwanee, Georgia. If they attempt to make such a claim, please understand that it doesn’t have any legal effect on your claim.
Nurse care managers or even physical therapists also cannot legally determine whether a worker has reached MMI. The only professional that can determine that you have reached MMI and assign a rating is the treating medical practitioner.
If you have suffered a work-related injury or illness, you might feel that you are all better and that you are as good as you will ever get. That isn’t a medical determination that you can make on your own.
The authorized treating physician could still have alternative treatments that they are yet to try that can help improve your medical condition. Furthermore, simply because you “feel” all better, you could still be in a very precarious medical state that can quickly worsen and cause further injury if you insist on performing your regular job duties.
Does Medical Treatment Continue After an MMI Diagnosis?
Yes. Medical treatments still continue even after you reach MMI. You may suffer from some form of pain or disability for the remainder of your life as a result of the workplace accident and the resultant injuries.
Even if your treating physician has determined that you are at maximum medical improvement, you aren’t forced to agree. You still have the option of switching doctors to get a second medical opinion if you believe that you haven’t reached the maximum possible recovery from your injuries.
If the new doctor determines that there are other treatments likely to improve your condition, workers’ compensation insurance will pay for additional treatments.
What If You Can’t Return to Work and Perform the Same After MMI?
If you are unable to return to work and perform at the same level after your MMI diagnosis in Suwanee, GA, your treating physician will state that you have reached MMI and give you a disability rating.
The disability rating plays a role in determining whether you can resume your work duties and, if so, what restrictions are required. Based on your job duties and these restrictions, you may have to be assigned to another position or require another job you can perform within your restrictions.
If you are deemed partially disabled, it is still possible to receive workers’ compensation benefits, but the amount will be reduced by the percentage of disability that you are given. For instance, if you are found to be 30 percent disabled, you will receive benefits reduced by the 70 percent function that you aren’t disabled.
If you are found to be totally disabled, it means that the doctor is of the opinion that you cannot have any “substantially gainful” employment without significant restrictions or pain. You should receive benefits based on the type of injury or illness suffered and its severity for a designated period of time.
Permanent partial disability (PPD) benefits are compensation for the damage done to a certain part of the body as determined by Georgia law. Temporary total disability (TTD) benefits, on the other hand, are paid out when you miss over 7 days of work due to a work-related injury and can’t be stopped simply because you are at MMI.
Call Us Today to Understand Your Suwanee Maximum Medical Improvement!
Navigating the sometimes complex world of workers’ compensation law in Suwanee, Georgia can be very difficult, especially if your treating physician has determined that you have reached maximum medical improvement.
If you are unable to do your job as you previously did or you need ongoing treatments for your condition, you may have to take legal action to protect your rights. If you are at this crossroads, you should consider contacting a Suwanee, GA lawyer to help with your case.
If you aren’t sure of what to do, or if you feel that your rights will be violated, or if you simply want to gain a better understanding of maximum medical improvement, contact the Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Coalition today to take advantage of our expertise. It is possible to receive workers’ compensation benefits after you reach maximum medical improvement.
If your treating physician has declared you to be at MMI and the insurance adjuster has asked you whether you wish to settle your claim, please get in touch with our experienced workers compensation lawyers at Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Coalition in Suwanee, GA to discuss your best legal options moving forward.
Contact us today either at 770-796-0919 or online to schedule your free consultation and case evaluation!