Request Free Consultation

Georgia Workers Compensation Lawyers

Request Free Consultation

Georgia Workers Compensation Lawyers
We Can Come To You!

Call 770-918-1100 For Your Free Case Evaluation
Read our Workers’ Compensation FAQ here!

What Should I Do If I Am Hurt At Work?

If you have been involved in a workplace accident, it is important to take the following steps in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.

Follow These Steps After A Workplace Injury:

  1. NOTIFY YOUR EMPLOYER
    Under Georgia law, an Injured Worker has 30 days in which to notify his or her employer of a workplace accident.  Notice can be verbal and can be given to your direct supervisor.  While you may have 30 days to notify your employer of your workplace accident, it is always in your best interest to notify your employer of your injury as soon as possible.
  2. GET MEDICAL TREATMENT WITH A PANEL DOCTOR
    By law, nearly all employers in Georgia are required to maintain what is known as a “panel of physicians.”  In most cases, this panel must include a list of at least six (6) doctors from which you are allowed to choose to seek medical treatment.  After you have notified your employer of your injury, be sure to ask your employer to see the panel of physicians and then choose a doctor from that list.  Your employer cannot tell you where to seek medical treatment – you have the right to choose.
  3. YOUR HEALTH IS WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT
    When you have been hurt at work, getting medical treatment is the most important thing you can do.  In the event that your employer either does not have a panel of physicians or does not make the panel of physicians available to you, seek treatment at an emergency room or walk-in clinic.  Should you be forced to treat at an emergency room or walk-in clinic, make sure that you tell the doctor that you were hurt at work and explain to them the circumstances surrounding your accident.
  4. MAKE SURE THE DOCTOR ADDRESSES WORK RESTRICTIONS
    Whether your end up seeking medical treatment with a panel physician or at an emergency room/walk-in clinic, make sure that the doctor treating your specifically addresses your ability to return to work.  When treating for a workplace injury, a doctor will likely either remove you from work completely, allow you to return to work with certain light duty restrictions, or release you to return to work at full duty without restrictions.  The type of work restrictions placed upon you following your accident will be of vital importance moving forward, so be certain that your doctor addresses your work restrictions following the accident.
  5. CONTACT AN ATTORNEY WHO SPECIALIZES IN WORKERS’ COMPENSATION
    When you are injured at work, it is never too early to obtain legal counsel in order to ensure that your rights are protected and to ensure that you receive all of the workers’ compensation benefits to which you are entitled. The state of Georgia tracks the amount of claims that come in vs. the amount of money is paid out. Visit the State’s Board of Workers’ Compensation to see the amount of money given to those who have been hurt. Insurance companies WILL pay, but only if you have the right legal protection.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident? It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented. Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates. If you have more questions, we offer free case evaluations at 678-CHAPMAN and do not collect fees until you get paid!

Contact Us Today – Get Your Free Case Evaluation – Find Out What Your Case Is Worth

When Will I Receive My Settlement Check?

After you claim has settled and the settlement documents have been approved by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation, by law, the Employer/Insurer will have 20 days (17 days if the insurer is located outside of Georgia) in which to issue the settlement checks. In the event the settlement checks are not issued within 20 days of the Board’s approval of the settlement documents, then the Employer/Insurer may be subject to a late-payment penalty equal to 20% of the total settlement amount.

It important to note that the Employer/Insurer will issue two separate checks – one check to cover the attorney’s fees and expenses, and a second check made payable to the Injured Worker. These checks will often be mailed to your attorney’s office and your attorney will contact you once they have received the settlement proceeds.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

The Parties Have Reached a Settlement…Now What?

There are a number of ways that your workers’ compensation claim may settle – your claim may be resolved through your attorney negotiating a settlement on your behalf with the Employer/Insurance Company, or, in some instances, the parties may opt for a settlement mediation. In either event, in order for any settlement to be “official,” it must be approved by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.

After the parties have agreed upon the financial terms of the settlement, the Employer/Insurer’s attorney will draft the settlement documents. Copies of the documents will be sent to your attorney for review. After your attorney has reviewed the settlement documents, they will likely schedule a time for you to meet with them in person to review and execute the settlement documents. After you have executed the settlement documents, your attorney will return the executed documents to the Employer/Insurer’s attorney, who will file the settlement documents with the State Board for approval. Upon receiving the executed settlement documents, the State Board will typically approve your settlement within five (5) to seven (7) business days. Once your settlement has been approved by the State Board, the Employer/Insurer has 20 days (17 days if the Insurer is located outside of Georgia) within which to issue the settlement checks.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

What are the Attorney’s Fees?

Attorney’s fees in Georgia workers’ compensation cases are regulated by statute. Specifically, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-108 dictates that with respect to workers’ compensation claims, attorney’s fees cannot exceed 25% of the injured worker’s award of weekly benefits or settlement. As it relates to settlements, it is important to note that attorney’s fees are not taken against any portion of a settlement that is specifically designated for the injured workers’ future medical treatment.

While attorney’s fees for other types of litigation may exceed this amount, when it comes to workers’ compensation cases within the state of Georgia, no attorney can charge a fee of greater than 25%. This is yet another way in which workers’ compensation claims are drastically different from other types of litigation.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

Liability Versus No-Liability Settlements

When settling a workers’ compensation claim in the state of Georgia, it is important to understand that there are two distinctly separate types of settlements – those involving liability stipulations and those involving no-liability stipulations.  The type of settlement agreement that you will enter into will depend upon the specific nature of your case.

In situations in which both parties agree that the underlying workers’ compensation claim is compensable, meaning that the Injured Worker is entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits, the parties will enter into a liability stipulation.

Conversely, in situations in which there is a dispute as to whether the underlying claim is compensable, likely meaning that the Injured Worker has not received workers’ compensation benefits, then the parties will enter into a no-liability stipulation.

In either event, it is important to remember that the settlement of your workers’ compensation claim is a completely voluntary process.  Neither the Injured Worker nor the Employer/Insurer is required to settle a workers’ compensation claim.  Before agreeing to settle your Georgia’s workers’ compensation, it is recommended that you consult with an attorney in order to maximize your recovery.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

What to Expect at Mediation

When it comes to settling your workers’ compensation claims, mediation is often a useful tool the parties can utilize in resolving a claim.  Mediation is a process in which representatives from both parties (the Injured Worker and the Employer/Insurer) sit down with a neutral third party – known as a “mediator” – in an effort to resolve a case.  There are two types of mediation – private mediation, which often take place at a mediator’s office, and a Board mediation, which typically takes place at the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.

During the course of mediation, a representative from each party will provide the mediator with a brief summary of the facts of the case as they see it.  The parties will then go into separate rooms to “caucus” and the mediator will go back and forth between the parties with updated settlement demands and settlement offers.  Throughout the mediation, the mediator will often provide their input with respect to the relative strengths and weaknesses of each party’s case.  During this process it is important to remember that the mediator is a neutral party, meaning they do not side with either party.  It is also important to remember that the mediation process is confidential and information shared or disclosed during the course of the mediation will not be shared outside of the mediation.

In most instances, the mediation process is a voluntary process.  This means that both parties have the right to leave the mediation at any time.  Having said that, Injured Workers are strongly advised to allow the mediation process run its course.  The mediation process is aimed at providing both parties with a resolution and is certainly a worthwhile endeavor.  While the process may be frustrating to some at times, mediation is ultimately a powerful tool in resolving claims and typically results in equitable results for Injured Workers.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

How do Work Injury Cases Settle

The overwhelming majority of workers’ compensation cases filed within the state of Georgia are resolved through settlement.  There are two basic methods through which workers’ compensation cases are settled.  Most commonly, your attorney will engage in informal settlement negotiations with the Insurance Company or their attorney, if an attorney has been assigned.  These negotiations commonly take place over the phone or via email.  This process will almost always begin with your attorney sending a settlement demand to the Insurance Company.  Once a settlement demand has been made, the ball is now in the Insurance Company’s court to make a settlement offer.  The parties will go back and forth with subsequent counter-demand and counter-offers until the parties reach an agreed-upon settlement amount.

The second method through which workers’ compensation cases are settled is through mediation.  There are two types of mediations – private mediations and Board mediations.  Regardless of whether the parties attend a private mediation or a Board mediation, the process is essentially the same.  The mediation will begin with your attorney make a demand to the Insurance Company, or their attorney, and the parties will go back and forth with counter-demands and counter-offers until the parties reach an agreeable settlement amount.

The settlement process is extremely nuanced and settling a workers’ compensation claim for its true value involves a considerable amount of skill and expertise.  In order to maximize the amount of your settlement, it is advisable that you seek the services of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney who can guide you through the settlement process to make sure that you get you the money that you deserve.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

Child Support Obligations

Following a workplace accident, you may find yourself facing significant financial strain. Faced with such financial strains, Injured Workers often find themselves falling behind on a number of financial obligations – including child support.

In the event that you fall behind on your child support payments, your workers’ compensation benefits may be impacted in two ways. First, your weekly workers’ compensation checks may be reduced in order to cover your child support obligations. Alternatively, in the event that your claim involves a lump sum settlement, your portion of the settlement may be reduced by the amount of child support that past due. These financial arrangements are often negotiable, but it is recommended that you speak with an attorney who is experienced in handling these types of situations.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

Mileage Reimbursement

Something that Injured Workers’ often overlook when dealing with a workers’ compensation claim is an entitlement to reimbursement for mileage and other expenses associated with traveling for treatment related to your workers’ compensation claim. Whether you are required to travel locally or across the state, Georgia law allows for Injured Workers to be compensated for their travel.

As of the time of this writing, pursuant to Board Rule 203 (e) Injured Workers are entitled to receive forty ($0.40) cents per mile as reimbursement for the travel associated with their workers’ compensation claim – including traveling to and from authorized doctor’s appointments, physical therapy appointments, or the pharmacy. It is important to note that there is a time limit within which you must request your reimbursement. All mileage must be presented for reimbursement within one year of the date of travel.

Further, if you are forced to come out of pocket to pay for parking, it is important to note that those expenses are also subject to reimbursement. Make sure that you keep any receipts associated with parking for your medical appointments. Also, be aware of the fact that there are certain circumstances in which you may be reimbursed for overnight stays and meals. It is recommended that you speak with an attorney in order to ensure that you are receiving all of the benefits that you are entitled to.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

Medical Benefits Under Georgia Law

If you have been injured in the course and scope of your employment, it is important to know that the workers’ compensation system will provide you with two types of benefits – weekly income benefits and medical treatment. This entry will discuss the types of medical benefits that an Injured Worker may be entitled to receive under Georgia law.

It is important to remember that the primary function of the workers’ compensation system in Georgia is to provide Injured Workers with the medical treatment needed in order to allow them to return to work. In the event that your claim is accepted as compensable, the insurance company will be required to provide you with all medical treatment that your authorized treating physician deems to be reasonable and necessary to help you recover from your accident. This may include things such as hospital visits, treatment with your authorized treating physician, payment for prescriptions, physical therapy treatment, and expenses associated with traveling to and from medical appointments. Remember that the Employer/Insurer is not under any obligation to pay for a medical treatment which is not ordered by the authorized treating physician. This being the case, under most circumstances, the Employer/Insurer will not pay for treatment that you receive from your personal physician.

Injured Workers are entitled to medical treatment for up to 400 weeks following the date of the accident. Remember that as long as the medical treatment is approved by an authorized treating physician, the insurance company is required to pay for your medical treatment and you will not have to come out of pocket for medical treatment.

Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

Workers' Compensation Average Weekly Wage Calculator

In Georgia, if you have been involved in a compensable workers’ compensation claim, you are entitled to two types of benefits – income benefits and medical treatment.  When discussing income benefits, it is important to understand what is meant by the term “average weekly wage” and how the average weekly wage is calculated.

By law, there are three (3) methods through which your average weekly wage can be calculated:

  • Thirteen (13) Weeks of Employee’s Earnings: Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-260 (1), the preferred method of calculating an injured worker’s average weekly wage is by reviewing the worker’s wages from the thirteen (13) weeks preceding the date of the injury and then taking the average of those thirteen (13) weeks of earning.  For example, if the injured worker earned $13,000.00 during the thirteen (13) week preceding his accident, then he would have an average weekly wage of $1,000.00.
  • Thirteen (13) Weeks of Similarly Situated Employee’s Earnings: If the injured worker has not worked “substantially the whole” of the thirteen (13) weeks preceding the date of injury, then the injured workers’ average weekly wage must be calculated by using the wages of a similarly situated employee. Pursuant to O.C.G.A § 34-9-260 (2) a similarly situated employee is a person who performs a similar type of job for the same employer.  If a similarly situated employee is identified, then the injured workers’ average weekly wage will be calculated based upon the same metrics above using the wages of the similarly situated employee.
  • Contracted Rate of Hire: If neither of the first two methods can be utilized in determining the injured worker’s average weekly wage, then the third method of determining the injured worker’s average weekly wage is to take the injured worker’s contracted rate of hire (or their hourly wage) and multiplying that rate by the number of hours they are contracted to work.  For instance, if the injured worker earns $10.00 per hour and is contracted to work 40 hours per week, then the injured work would have an average weekly wage of $400.00

    Accurately determining your average weekly wage is significant in that it serves as the basis for determining what your weekly compensation rate will be.  An injured worker is entitled to receive two-thirds (2/3) of their average weekly wage as their weekly workers’ compensation payment — up to a maximum of $675.00 per week.  Using the example above, if the injured worker has an average weekly wage of $400.00, then the corresponding compensation rate would be $266.67.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Income Benefits Under Georgia Law

    If you have been injured in the course and scope of your employment, it is important to know that the workers’ compensation system will provide you with two types of benefits – weekly income benefits and medical treatment. This entry will discuss the various types of income benefits that an Injured Worker may be entitled to receive.

    Under Georgia law, there are three (3) distinctly different types of income benefits that Injured Workers may be entitled to:

    1) Temporary Total Disability Benefits (TTD)

    If a doctor removes you from work completely, or if your employer is unable to accommodate your light duty work restrictions, then you may be entitled to TTD benefits. Injured Workers are entitled to TTD benefits at a rate of two-thirds (2/3) of their pre-accident average weekly wage up to a maximum of $675.00 per week. An Injured Worker is entitled to receive TTD benefits for up to 400 weeks from the date of their accident.

    2) Temporary Partial Disability Benefits (TPD)

    If you return to work with light-duty work restrictions following your accident and are earning less money than you were prior to your accident, then you may be entitled to TPD benefits. Workers entitled to TPD benefits receive two-thirds (2/3) of the difference between what they were earning prior to the accident and what they are receiving after the accident up to a maximum of $450.00 per week. An injured worker can receive these benefits for up to 350 weeks from the date of their accident.

    3) Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD)

    In the event that your authorized treating physician assigns you what is known as a “permanent impairment rating,” then you could be entitled to PPD benefits. These PPD benefits can be paid out in one lump sum payment or on a weekly basis. The amount of PPD benefits that you will receive will depend upon the impairment rating assigned, your average weekly wage, and the body part to which the impairment rating is assigned.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Are Workers’ Compensation Benefits Considered “Taxable Income?”

    It is that time of year again. The deadline for filing personal income tax returns is fast approaching and the dreaded April 15th deadline will be here before we know it.  If you have received workers’ compensation benefits, you may wonder whether the income benefits that you have received need to be reported as taxable income.  The good news is that generally speaking, workers’ compensation benefits are not considered taxable income.  Accordingly, Injured Workers are not required to report workers’ compensation benefits on their W2 or other tax documents.

    There are certain exceptions to this general rule, however.  Specifically, if an Injured Worker has received Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) certain tax implications may be involved.  If you have any questions regarding the specific nature of the tax implications involving either SSDI or SSI benefits, it is recommended that you contact a tax professional.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Workers’ Compensation and Workplace Violence

    Unfortunately, there are often instances in which employees are the victims of violence in the workplace.  If you have been the victim of workplace violence, depending upon the specific circumstances of your case, you may be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits.

    Generally speaking, if the violence takes place in the course and scope of your employment, is related to the work that you are performing, and you are not the aggressor, then you will likely have a compensable workers’ compensation claim.  Conversely, if the violence is related to something stemming from outside of the workplace, or if you are the aggressor, then it will likely not be compensable under Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws.  Cases involving workplace violence are incredibly fact specific.  This being the case, if you are a victim of workplace violence, it is recommended that you consult with an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation as soon as possible.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Catastrophic Work Injuries Under Georgia Law

    In some tragic instances, a worker may sustain injuries so severe that he or she may never be able to work again.  Typically, injured workers are only entitled to receive 400 weeks of income benefits.  However, in the event that an Injured Worker is determined to have sustained what is known as a “catastrophic injury,” then he or she may be entitled to receive a lifetime of income benefits, along with a lifetime of medical treatment.

    Under Georgia law, you may be entitled to a catastrophic designation if you have suffered one of the following types of injuries:

    1. a spinal cord injury involving severe paralysis of an arm, leg, or trunk;
    2. the amputation of an arm, a hand, a foot, or a leg involving the effective loss of use of that appendage;
    3. a severe brain or closed head injury;
    4. significant second or third-degree burns;
    5. total industrial blindness.

    Further, if your injuries render you unable to perform your prior job or any other job for which you may be qualified, then you may also be entitled to receive a catastrophic designation.

    If you have been involved in a workplace accident resulting in any of these traumatic injuries, it is important that you speak with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in order to ensure that you get all of the benefits to which you are entitled.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Do I Qualify for Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

    If you have been injured in the course and scope of your employment, you may find yourself asking “do all employees qualify for workers’ compensation benefits?” Unfortunately, the answer to that question is “no.” Under Georgia law, there are certain types of employees who are not covered under Georgia’s workers’ compensation system. Specifically, there are six types of workers who are generally not covered under the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act. These workers include 1) employees of an employer who has less than three (3) employees that regularly perform work for the employer; 2) farm laborers; 3) railroad employees; 4) independent contractors; 5) domestic servants; or 6) employees of the United States Government.

    If you have suffered a workplace accident and think that you fall into one of the categories of employees referenced above, do not be discouraged. Contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney in order to make sure that your claim undergoes the pertinent legal analysis. You may be covered under a workers’ compensation policy and not even know it.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident? It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented. Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Liability and Your Workers’ Compensation Claim

    If you are injured in the course and scope of your employment, and your injury may have been fault, you may wonder whether you are barred from filing a workers’ compensation claim.  The good news for workers injured in Georgia is that, generally speaking, even if your workplace accident is your fault, you are still entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits.  This is because Georgia is what is known as a “no-fault state.”  Under Georgia law, unless your injury is the result of horseplay or is caused by your willful disregard for a company policy, then you should be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits, even if you are at fault for the injury.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    Can I Sue My Employer?

    If you have been involved in a workplace accident, you may wonder whether you have the right to sue your employer.  You were hurt at work, so it would stand to reason that you should be allowed to sue your employer, right?  Unfortunately, in most instances, the answer to that question is no.  Under Georgia law, if you have been involved in a workplace accident, you are not permitted to sue your employer.  This being the case, the workers’ compensation system (i.e. filing a workers’ compensation claim) is your exclusive remedy against your employer.  Having said that, the workers’ compensation system is beneficial to employees in that they do not have to file a lawsuit against their employer – a process which can years – and that employees do not have to prove that their employer was at fault for their injuries in order to receive workers’ compensation benefits.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    What is the Exclusive Remedy Doctrine?

    If you are injured at work due to the negligence of your employer or a co-worker the question may arise “can I sue the at-fault party for their negligence?” Unfortunately, the answer is no. This is because under Georgia law, when it comes to workplace injuries, filing a workers’ compensation claim is an injured worker’s exclusive remedy.

    The so-called “Exclusive Remedy Doctrine” is both good news and bad news for workers injured in Georgia. The good news is, if you are injured in the course and scope of your employment, you are entitled to file a workers’ compensation claim – regardless of who is at fault. Consequently, in most circumstances, you are permitted to file a workers’ compensation claim even if the accident was your fault. This is true unless you were intoxicated, engaged in horseplay, or were engaged in some type of willful misconduct at the time of the accident.

    The flip side of the Exclusive Remedy Doctrine is that since the employer or insurer must accept any claim that occurs in the course and scope of employment (with the exception of the specific instances detailed above) an Injured Worker cannot bring a separate cause of action for negligence against their employer or a co-worker.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    What is Workers’ Compensation?

    If you have been injured in the course and scope of your employment, it is important that you understand exactly what is meant by the term “workers’ compensation.”  At its most basic level, workers’ compensation is essentially an insurance policy that your employer has taken out to cover their employees in the event that they sustain a workplace injury.  Workers’ compensation coverage will provide the injured worker with a consistent income, along with medical treatment, in an effort to get the injured worker back to work as soon as possible.

    It is important to remember that workers’ compensation is not a vehicle through which workers can attempt to punish their employers for their alleged wrongdoing.  That is to say that workers’ compensation does not provide for so-called “punitive damages.” Instead, the purpose of workers’ compensation is to provide medical treatment (including paying for certain hospital bills, doctors’ bill, physical therapy, and prescriptions) and income benefits in an effort to return the injured worker to work.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!

    What Should I Do If I Am Hurt at Work?

    If you have been involved in a workplace accident, it is important to take the following steps in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.

    1) NOTIFY YOUR EMPLOYER

    Under Georgia law, an Injured Worker has 30 days in which to notify his or her employer of a workplace accident.  Notice can be verbal and can be given to your direct supervisor.  While you may have 30 days to notify your employer of your workplace accident, it is always in your best interest to notify your employer of your injury as soon as possible.

    2) GET MEDICAL TREATMENT WITH A PANEL DOCTOR

    By law, nearly all employers in Georgia are required to maintain what is known as a “panel of physicians.”  In most cases, this panel must include a list of at least six (6) doctors from which you are allowed to choose to seek medical treatment.  After you have notified your employer of your injury, be sure to ask your employer to see the panel of physicians and then choose a doctor from that list.  Your employer cannot tell you where to seek medical treatment – you have the right to choose.

    3) YOUR HEALTH IS WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT

    When you have been hurt at work, getting medical treatment is the most important thing you can do.  In the event that your employer either does not have a panel of physicians or does not make the panel of physicians available to you, seek treatment at an emergency room or walk-in clinic.  Should you be forced to treat at an emergency room or walk-in clinic, make sure that you tell the doctor that you were hurt at work and explain to them the circumstances surrounding your accident.

    4) MAKE SURE THE DOCTOR ADDRESSES WORK RESTRICTIONS

    Whether your end up seeking medical treatment with a panel physician or at an emergency room/walk-in clinic, make sure that the doctor treating your specifically addresses your ability to return to work.  When treating for a workplace injury, a doctor will likely either remove you from work completely, allow you to return to work with certain light duty restrictions, or release you to return to work at full duty without restrictions.  The type of work restrictions placed upon you following your accident will be of vital importance moving forward, so be certain that your doctor addresses your work restrictions following the accident.

    5) CONTACT AN ATTORNEY WHO SPECIALIZES IN WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

    When you are injured at work, it is never too early to obtain legal counsel in order to ensure that your rights are protected and to ensure that you receive all of the workers’ compensation benefits to which you are entitled.

    Have you or a loved one been involved in a workplace accident?  It is important that you contact an attorney who specializes in workers’ compensation in order to ensure that your rights are adequately represented.  Contact the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates at 678-242-7626. We offer free case evaluations and collect no fees unless you win!