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4 Georgia Workers’ Compensation Mistakes Than Can Cost You

Posted on - Saturday, April 2, 2016 under Workers Compensation

We all make mistakes. Sometimes, those mistakes can be merely embarrassing or inconvenient. Other times, however, mistakes can have serious consequences. If you’ve been hurt on the job in Georgia, the mistakes you make after your work injury can cost you the crucial workers’ compensation benefits you deserve.

As an experienced Georgia workers’ compensation lawyer, I have had clients come to me seeking assistance obtaining their benefits after they have made decisions, taken actions, or failed to take actions that can make that process infinitely more difficult. So many things that can torpedo a valid workers’ claim are simply avoidable mistakes.

Here are four common Georgia workers’ compensation mistakes that you should try to avoid in the aftermath of a work injury:

  1. Don’t lie, it’s just that simple. Whether it is about how the accident happened or whether you have a pre-existing condition that may have been made worse by the accident, tell the truth. Intentional falsehoods or failures to disclose relevant information will come back to haunt you and call your credibility into question.
  2. Going to the wrong doctor. You obviously want to get treatment for your injury, but it’s also important to go to the right physician if you want that treatment to be covered by workers’ compensation. Except in cases of emergency, you need to see a physician approved by your employer for the costs to be covered by workers’ compensation. You can, of course, see your own physician if you choose, but those bills will be your responsibility, as many if not most workplace injuries are not covered by health insurance. If it turns out you want to get a different doctor after being treated by your first choice of an approved physician, you can make one change to another doctor on the employer’s approved list without getting approval from your employer. Any subsequent change of physician will require your employer’s consent.
  3. Failing to meet deadlines. Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws place strict limitations on when certain steps need to be taken in order for you to retain your right to benefits. For example, there is a 30-day deadline for giving your employer notice of your injury; a one-year deadline for filing your claim; a two-year deadline for filing a change in condition claim; and a one-year deadline to file a claim for payment of medical expenses. If you drop the ball and let these deadlines pass by, you could find yourself out of luck.
  4. Allowing yourself to be intimidated. Sometimes, employers will attempt to interfere with your rights to workers’ compensation benefits, try to convince you not to file a claim, or threaten you with retaliation if you do exercise your rights. It is against the law in Georgia for employers to retaliate against employees for seeking workers’ compensation benefits. Similarly, don’t be railroaded into any agreement regarding your rights without first consulting with an experienced Georgia workers’ compensation attorney.

The Parian Law Firm: West Georgia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers

At The Parian Law Firm, we take pride in protecting the health and the rights of injured Georgia workers through skilled representation in workers’ compensation matters. If you’ve been injured on the job and are seeking workers’ compensation benefits, please give us a call at (770) 727-5550 or chat live online with a member of our staff today.