Give us a call at (619) 528-9800 to set up your free consultation. Our workers’ compensation attorneys would be honored to help grant you the financial freedom you need to make a full recovery.
It’s very hard to estimate how long an individual will take to recover from an on the job injury. After all, we are all different. We have different body compositions, different levels of health, people respond differently to both conservative and invasive forms of treatment and doctors don’t always follow the same treatment plan for every person.
Instead, what I like to tell my clients is that workers’ compensation doesn’t last forever. If you’ve read any of my other blog articles, I have probably referred to the limited aspect of workers’ compensation. In other words, the benefits provided to workers recovering from an injury are usually finite.
Temporary Total Disability Benefits
For example, when someone comes to me and their treatment is likely to include a total knee replacement or a spinal fusion procedure it’s important to discuss the 104 week limitation with temporary total disability (TTD) benefits. When a doctor has placed someone out of work completely (or on work restrictions the employer cannot accommodate) these TTD payments are the weekly benefits owed to injured workers. Strategically, these benefits need to be coordinated appropriately because the 104 weeks, or 2 years, worth of benefits is only good within a 5-year period from the date of an injury. After 5 years is up, the carrier is no longer responsible for replacing missed income whether the entire 104 weeks of benefits has been exhausted or not.
When someone is undergoing a procedure that is not only going to keep them out of work for a long time but also carries a long postoperative recovery period, it’s vital these weeks aren’t burned up too soon. Otherwise, you face being without any income while still out of work treating or having to file for state disability benefits. We see medical reports from new clients all the time where people go months just circling back and forth to the doctor with nothing happening. This is not productive and many occupational medicine clinics just don’t get people the treatment they need.
Develop a Plan of Attack for Pursuing the Workers' Compensation Claim
Because these benefits can quickly burn up while workers’ compensation continues to deny, delay and outright ignore treatment needs it is urgent that injured workers develop a plan of attack for pursuing their claim. We can assist you with controlling your medical care so you can skip all the hold ups with obtaining necessary care and move forward with getting better and back to work faster.
If you feel like your treatment is being delayed, denied or ignored please contact our office today for a free consultation so we can discuss how to keep your claim moving forward so you don’t end up lost in the workers’ compensation system. Give us a call at (619) 528-9800
After an Injury, When Do Workers’ Compensation Benefits Start?
At this point, getting better should be your number one priority. But with the stress of not knowing how you’ll come up with money to cover your medical expenses, let alone pay bills and provide for your family while you’re off work, money is likely the biggest thing on your mind. Fortunately, eligible employees can file for workers’ compensation to cover many, if not all of the costs associated with regaining their health. Knowing that help is on the way certainly eases an injured worker’s financial fears, but how long will it take before the benefits actually kick in?
At the Law Offices of Gerald D. Brody & Associates, we get this question a lot. With over 45 years of collective experience representing injured employees, we have a deep understanding of the workers’ compensation system that allows us to move your case forward so you can get the benefits you need quickly.
When do workers’ compensation benefits start?
In nearly every case, you’ll need to visit the doctor for treatment while waiting for a decision on your workers’ compensation claim. The good news is that some of your benefits are available immediately. In California, an employer’s insurance company is required to authorize medical care up to $10,000 within one working day from when you file paperwork. This means you have funds available right away to cover your initial doctor visits.
Once your workers’ compensation claim is formally accepted, the rest of your benefits will kick in. If you receive a letter stating your claim was denied, you have a right to file an appeal. However, note that you will not receive temporary or permanent disability benefits, also known as time loss compensation until you win your appeal.
Even if your claim is approved, you won’t start receiving checks right away. First, your doctor has to submit a form verifying that you are physically or mentally unable to work. Only then will you be eligible to collect wages lost while you’re out of work recovering from your injury. Generally, disability payments stop when your doctor establishes that your injury has reached “maximum medical improvement” and releases you to return to work.
Are you Still Waiting for Your Workers' Compensation Benefits?
When you are injured on the job and file for workers’ compensation, you are entitled to receive up to $10,000 to cover medical expenses while you await formal acceptance of your claim. If you have filed a claim and are still waiting for the claims administrator to authorize treatment, or if you believe you are not receiving the full benefits to which you’re entitled, please contact us.