What Happens When You Reach Maximum Medical Improvement in Your Atlanta Workers Comp Case?

If you get hurt on the job in Atlanta, you’re probably going to have to file a worker’s compensation claim. It depends on how serious your injuries are. It also depends on how long you’ll be out of work. If you’re only going to be out of work for a year or two, you won’t really qualify for benefits. However, if you miss more than a couple of weeks, your claim should be approved.

Once your claim is approved, you’ll start receiving certain benefits. These benefits will continue until you return to work. The question a lot of accident victims in Atlanta ask is when this will happen. Some people think they don’t have to go to back to work until they feel they’re ready. However, this is not the case. One the doctor says you’re ready to go back to work, you need to go back. This is what is referred to as reaching maximum medical improvement.

Maximum medical improvement just means that, no matter what kind of treatment you receive, you aren’t going to get any better. Employees are expected to return to work when they reach this point. However, if you don’t feel you’re physically able to do so, your Atlanta workers comp attorney can help.

What Benefits are You Entitled to in South Carolina?

If you get hurt at work in Atlanta, Georgia, your workers compensation attorney will fight to make sure you get the benefits you deserve. This includes medical treatment and replacement wages. There are limits to how much you can receive. The Georgia workers compensation statute provides for the following:

  • Medical treatment as long as you are treated by a company-approved doctor
  • You are also eligible for replacement wages of up to $675 per week. You will get 2/3 of your average weekly wages. So, if you were earning $1,000 per week prior to your accident, you’ll receive about $666 per week.
  • You can only receive replacement wages for 400 weeks
  • If you can work but not full-time, you’ll receive 2/3 of the difference in your wages. The maximum amount you can receive is $350 per week. These benefits cannot exceed 450 weeks

If your claim is approved, you will receive these benefits. However, if your claim is denied, you won’t receive any of these benefits.

What Exactly is Maximum Medical Improvement?

Once you report your injury to your employer, you’ll need to be seen by a doctor. Under Georgia workers comp law, you have to be treated by a company approved doctor. Your company will offer you a choice of several doctors. If you don’t see one of these doctors, your claim may be denied. Your benefits can also be terminated if you see a doctor that isn’t on the approved list.

After your doctor examines you, they’ll recommend a certain treatment regimen. If you don’t follow their recommendations, your claim will be terminated or suspended. So, it’s important that you do what your doctor tells you. After the doctor has treated you, they’ll let you know when you’ve reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). This is the point at which further treatment would be deemed futile.

When your doctor says you’ve reached MMI, you’ll be expected to return to work. If you choose not to do so, your benefits will terminate. If, however, you don’t feel you’re truly ready to go back, your attorney can have an independent doctor examine you. If they don’t feel you’re truly healed, they can challenge the determination of MMI.

If You Don’t Return to Work, Your Benefits Will Terminate in Georgia

Once it’s been determined that you’ve reached MMI, you will be expected to return to work. Or, you may be deemed totally disabled and won’t ever be able to return to the same job you did prior to the accident. Either way, your workers comp case will be closed. You may be issued permanent benefits. This is something your Atlanta workers compensation lawyer will address with the insurance company.

Contact an Experienced Workers Comp Attorney in Atlanta, Georgia

If you get hurt at work, one of the first things you need to do is call and talk to an experienced workers comp lawyer in Atlanta. They can review your case and let you know if you’re entitled to benefits. They can also reach out to the insurance company and see why your claim hasn’t been paid. Call today and schedule your free initial consultation. You can sit down with a lawyer who will answer any questions you may have. They can also give you an idea of what your case is worth, depending on your injuries.