How the Doctor You Choose Can Impact Your Workers’ Compensation Claim

After a work-related injury, you’ll most certainly want to seek out the most qualified doctor that can get you back to feeling your best! While you may want to go to your family doctor that you’ve been a patient of for years, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are experienced in workers’ compensation cases.

Having the right doctor on your case can be vital to the success of your claim. It’s essential to make sure that they understand the complicated and often red-tape riddled areas of workers’ compensation claims. Not only do you want to receive the best treatment and care, but you want to trust that they are holding up to the administrative duties that come along with being your attending physician.

Here are some things to consider when making a decision about which workers’ compensation doctor you choose.

Is Your Doctor Experienced With Workers’ Compensation Claims?

Not only is your attending physician responsible for the treatment of your work-related injury, but they should also be knowledgeable about all workers’ compensation deadlines. Here are some top responsibilities your doctor should be aware of:

  • Reporting - It’s imperative that your doctor submits all reports on time and completes them correctly. Missing report deadlines could jeopardize an injured worker’s case. Incorrect or incomplete information on doctor reports could delay your workers’ compensation payments.
  • Request for Authorization - Doctors must sign and submit a “Request for Authorization” before treating. Any treatment done without authorization may not be covered under workers’ compensation.

What Type of Doctor Can Treat My Work-Related Injury?

There are regulations regarding which types of doctors can be your treating physician in a workers’ compensation case. In the State of California the following doctors are authorized to treat injured workers:

  • Medical (M.D.) and Osteopathic Doctors (D.O.)
  • Podiatrists
  • Chiropractic practitioners
  • Dentists
  • Optometrists
  • Acupuncturists
  • Psychologists

Changing Physicians

If you are not satisfied with your attending physician, due to poor care, you have the right to change doctors. However, it’s important to understand that in the State of California, if your employer has set up a medical provider network, you can only change doctors within that network. If you still are not satisfied with your new physician, you may be able to request an out of network doctor.

Before you switch doctors or make any other changes to your workers’ compensation case, consult your attorney first to ensure any changes won’t be a detriment to your case.

If you need assistance with filing a workers’ compensation claim Employees' Legal Advocates, LLP can help. Our experienced attorneys can guide you every step of the way. Contact us today at (213) 267-3640 for a free and confidential assessment of your case.

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