Choosing a Doctor for Workers’ Compensation
January 10, 2018
When a worker is injured on the job, they have the right to file a Workers’ Compensation claim to seek benefits such as coverage for their medical bills, compensation for a portion of their lost wages, and in some cases, vocational rehabilitation. A Workers’ Compensation claim is made with an employer’s Workers’ Compensation insurance policy. State laws govern the Workers’ Compensation process, which vary from state to state. With a Workers’ Compensation claim, the injured employee is bound to these guidelines as well as certain choices their employer makes, such as which doctor will treat their injury.
When a worker needs emergency medical attention after a workplace accident, they should head to the emergency room right away to receive prompt treatment. This is the only time the worker can choose the doctor because in an emergency, the doctor who can immediately treat their injury is the right doctor for the job. In New Jersey, an injured worker cannot choose the doctor who will treat their injury. As the provider of Workers’ Compensation benefits, the worker’s employer can choose which doctor will treat the injury. The chosen doctor must provide treatment for as long as the employee receives medical care under their Workers’ Compensation claim.
The Independent Medical Examination (IME)
Employees who file Workers’ Compensation claims are subject to independent medical examinations (IMEs). If a worker refuses this examination, they can potentially lose access to benefits for their claim. The purpose of an IME is to evaluate the extent of the injury and link it to the worker’s accident. It is also used to screen the employee for potential Workers’ Compensation fraud. In certain cases, doctors who perform IMEs can downplay patient injuries to save Workers’ Compensation providers money. This can lead to patients receiving less medical compensation than they need to cover their expenses. To reduce the chance of this happening, an injured worker should always work with a Workers’ Compensation lawyer who can act as their advocate and negotiate with the doctor using evidence provided by the patient.
Cherry Hill Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Help Injured Workers Access Their Benefits
If you were injured in a workplace accident, you have the right to file a Workers’ Compensation claim and access the benefits you are entitled to receive. To learn more about this right and pursuing a Workers’ Compensation claim, fill out our online form or call us at 856-414-0010 to schedule your initial consultation with a Cherry Hill Workers’ Compensation lawyer at DiTomaso Law. Our office is in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and we serve clients throughout the state.
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