What Is a Workers’ Compensation Claim in Norcross?
As is the case in all 50 states, Georgia state law provides various protections to most workers who are exposed to hazardous condition in the course of their employment. To that end, any company or entity that employs three or more regular workers—part-time or full-time—must maintain workers’ compensation insurance for those workers to use in the event they get hurt or chronically ill on the job.
Although every such employer is required to post signage in heavily trafficked workspaces detailing the workers’ comp rights of employees, it can be hard to piece together what a workers’ compensation claim in Norcross actually is if you have never dealt with this system before. Here are some of the basics about how these claims work, all of which a workers’ comp attorney could explain in further detail.
Procedural Requirements for Workers’ Comp Claims
The first step to pursuing workers’ compensation benefits is for a prospective claimant to report the accident that caused a workplace injury—or the conditions that led to a chronic illness—to their employer. Injured or ill employees must fill out Form WC-14—provided by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation—detailing the nature of their accident and all the ill effects that came from it.
Following this, the injured worker must seek formal diagnosis and treatment from one of their employer’s approved healthcare providers. Claimants must continue to follow their doctors’ instructions until they reach “maximum medical improvement,” which is the point at which their physician determines that they have healed from their injury as much as they can ever expect to.
There are no time constraints regarding how long an employee has to work for an employer before they are covered under their workers’ compensation insurance, but if an injured worker waits more than 30 days to report an accident, they may have a very difficult time getting benefits. A Norcross workers’ compensation attorney could provide more specific guidance about what the best course of action would be in a particular situation.
What Could an Injured Worker Seek Benefits for?
In addition to cash benefits covering all medical expenses related to a workplace injury, employees in Norcross covered under workers’ compensation are eligible for weekly income benefits—generally equal to two-thirds of their pre-accident average weekly wage—if their injury keeps them out of work for seven workdays or more, starting after those seven days have passed. If a worker is out of work for more than 21 consecutive days, they can receive retroactive income benefits for the first seven days of work they missed.
In the event an injury or illness leaves a worker permanently disabled to some degree, partial or total permanent disability benefits may be available as well. The length of time these benefits will be available depends on the claimant’s degree of disability and the area of their body that is disabled.
Talk to a Norcross Attorney About Pursuing a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Even if you understand the steps you need to take in order to seek workers’ compensation benefits, trying to pursue a claim alone can be a recipe for disaster. There are many small mishaps and mistakes that can sidetrack an injured worker’s claim, and an ill-timed claim denial could leave you in a dire position both physically and financially.
Seeking guidance from a seasoned workers’ compensation lawyer is generally the best way to ensure you can navigate the claims process effectively and pursue the benefits you need. Call today to set up your initial consultation.