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Frequently Asked Workers’ Compensation Questions
At Harriss and Hartman Law Firm, P.C., our team of workers’ compensation attorneys helps injured workers navigate all stages of Georgia’s workers’ compensation process, from applications to appeals.
We offer free initial consultations to hurt employees because we do not want financial concerns to prevent you from receiving the information that you need. During these appointments, we frequently hear these questions. If you or a loved one was injured at work, we invite you to read our answers below before reaching out to our team.
Am I covered by workers’ compensation?
It isn’t only a workplace accident that is covered by workers’ compensation, illnesses and medical conditions that develop over time may be covered as well. When you are filing for benefits, you will need to establish that you became injured during your employment.
If you became injured as a result of horseplay, it is likely that your claim will be rejected. When you speak to our attorneys, they will review your claim and give you a straightforward assessment of your options.
Can I be fired for filing a claim?
No. Employers are prohibited from firing or retaliating against employees who file for workers’ compensation benefits. If you are applying for benefits, however, you need to continue to report to work unless you receive a medical excuse. In Georgia, employers are allowed to fire their employees if they have a valid reason. Failing to show up for work without a doctor’s approval could be a valid reason for terminating a position.
If I file, am I suing my employer?
No. When you file a workers’ compensation claim, you are submitting an application for benefits to your employer’s insurer. Most employers in Georgia are required to pay insurance premiums to cover their workers in the event of an injury. Insurance companies make the claims process challenging and are quick to deny claims because they do not want to pay out claims.
While you are not suing your employer, securing benefits may increase your employer’s annual premiums. Your employer may have a financial incentive to make it difficult to receive the coverage you deserve. This is why it is important to work with an attorney who makes your financial interests a priority.
How long will it take to get benefits?
Each workers’ compensation case is different, so it is difficult to provide one timeline for all cases. If your injury prevents you from working for seven days, the insurance company must provide income benefits within three weeks of your accident.
If your claim is denied, you will need to follow the appeals process and receive a favorable decision to receive benefits.
Can I see my own doctor?
Georgia workers’ compensation laws require injured workers to see an approved doctor. Employers are required to post a list of approved physicians at an accessible location at work. If your workplace injuries are severe, you are allowed to receive treatment at an emergency room.