So you’ve been injured at work and are looking to file a workers’
compensation claim. This is a good decision; a workers’ compensation
claim can get you the financial relief you and your loved ones need while
you are recovering from your condition. However, you may find that you’ll
face resistance from your employer along the way, which can further complicate
things. So how long will your claim take to complete? When can you start
expecting to see compensation for your injury? While the answer to this
question is unique based on your condition, let’s take a look at
a simplified, general timeline of a workers’ compensation claim.
Seek Treatment. You need to report your injury to your employer within 30 days in order
to begin seeking medical treatment. Your employer is legally entitled
to choose your medical provider for your first treatment appointment,
where they will evaluate your condition and file their initial report.
However, you are not required to continue treatment with them for subsequent
treatments. Instead, they should notify you of a medical provider network
which you can choose an approved doctor from. If your employer does not
have a provided network, you can see any physician that accepts workers’
compensation insurance after the first 30 days of treatment. Be sure you
do this within the initial 90-day delay period.
File a claim. Fill out a WC-14 Workers’ Compensation Claim Form. This is one of
the most important documents in your entire claim, so be sure that you
fill it out carefully and keep a copy for yourself—you’ll
be going back to it a lot. You have one year to file your claim with the
Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation after your last authorized
Your initial hearing. The Board will likely take your deposition (testimony under oath) at your
initial hearing, which takes place about one to two months after you file
your hearing request form. The insurance company will then use this deposition
to request additional information from medical providers or request records.
Your second hearing. Usually, your second hearing occurs about three months after you have
filed your initial claim, and will often result in your insurance company
requesting more medical records and evidence, such as sending you for
an independent medical exam (IME).
Your third hearing. Generally around four to five months after you have filed your initial
claim, your case is ready to be heard by an administrative law judge.
At this point the evidence in your case will be presented and your insurance
company and your attorney will both present their arguments for a ruling.
Should your claim be accepted, you will likely start obtaining compensation
soon. However, it’s not uncommon for these claims to be denied,
and you may wish to appeal the decision, particularly if you are still
suffering from your condition obtained while on the job.
For this reason, it is strongly advised that you seek the assistance of
a Cobb County workers’ comp attorney. At
Chestnut & Beller, we have a substantial record of success helping individuals navigate
the complexities of a workers’ compensation case, and we are proud
to help victims of on the job injuries obtain the compensation they need.
We are a proud three-time winner of the Workers’ Comp Attorney of
the Year award, which stands as a testament to our dedicated and high-quality
Retain an attorney to help you with your claim today! Call Chestnut &
Beller today at (770) 285-5542 to request a