HOW THE WRONG DOCTOR CAN NEGATIVELY IMPACT YOUR WORKERS’ COMP CLAIM
Having a doctor that is supportive and qualified to treat your work-related injury is paramount to your workers’ compensation claim. While you may be comfortable enlisting your family physician to assist with your medical treatment for your work-related injury — you’ll want to make sure he has the proper qualifications to support your claim. Here’s what you need to know.
How Much Experience Does Your Doctor Have With Work Comp Claims?
While your doctor may be supportive of your work-injury, he must do more than just write a letter stating that you are disabled. Your doctor must be well-versed in the procedures that come along with taking on a patient in a workers’ compensation case. An inexperienced physician can cost you a claim denial. It’s important for you to ask the following questions to determine if he’s the right choice:
- How many years has the physician been attending to workers’ comp claims?
- Does he handle all claims personally or does he have help from staff members?
- If staff members assist with the processing of paperwork and other tasks, how experienced are they?
- Is the doctor aware of the reporting and filing deadlines?
The above questions can help you gauge their experience, so you can make an informed decision. Should a doctor not understand the importance of filing deadlines, you should seek out another doctor. Meeting deadlines is crucial to avoid a claim denial which could cost you the benefits that you deserve.
What is Your Doctor’s Role to Determine Maximum Medical Improvement?
Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI) is a required determination used in the workers’ compensation system to describe a condition that is stabilized but not likely to improve within the next year. Once it’s been determined that you can no longer get better with or without further treatment, the next step is for your doctor to prepare the report. An experienced doctor will know what information should be included and when it should be submitted. If you don’t agree with the report, you are entitled to question the findings. In such case, it’s best to consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney to assist in getting you a second opinion.
If you have been injured at work and need assistance with finding a doctor, getting started on a claim or appealing a denial, Law Offices of Bo Katzakian can help! Contact us at (209) 762-8511 to set up a free case evaluation today.