How to Get a Second Opinion on a Workers’ Compensation Claim
There are a few people who have deep relationships with their regular doctors. Usually, they are unhappy to find out that they have a different doctor for a job-related injury. Most people are unhappy with the doctor they have for a work injury.
Is there anything you can do about it? Of course, there is, but most of the time people just accept that this is the level of care they will receive. You have a right to a second opinion, and you should use it.
Work with a Washington, DC workers’ comp attorney to help make your need for a second opinion heard.
Conditions Most Commonly Denied in Initial Claims
Many doctors will identify a condition and determine that the injury was not actually related to the job. That is a terrible way for anyone to lose their workers’ compensation claim.
The most common conditions that result in denial include:
- Herniated disks
- Torn ligaments
- Back injuries when considered with age
- Claims possibly related to arthritis
These conditions cause a number of problems when it comes to workers’ compensation claims. First, if any of these are pre-existing conditions, you may need a workers’ comp attorney to help you. They might be able to show that the condition was not the cause of the injury. Second, many companies will try to deflect their “as-is” hiring status. Finally, these conditions often lead to long-term problems.
Doctors will often see these problems and decide that they can’t say whether it came from the job duties or not. A second opinion is your best bet to showing that you did not have these injuries prior to your on-the-job accident.
Who Chose Your First Doctor?
It’s likely that you unknowingly chose your first doctor or that the doctor was selected at random. When you came on as an employee, you may have had the right to request your personal physician. That doesn’t mean that you could select a new doctor.
If you did not request your personal physician, then your employer will have a roster of at least six doctors available for workers’ compensation cases. Their doctors must be within their insurance carrier’s network. There is no guarantee that you’ll see any particular person though.
How To Switch Workers’ Compensation Doctors
You can switch doctors, and you should if you don’t feel comfortable with the doctor assigned to you. If an occupational doctor seems more concerned about getting you back to work than getting you healthy, move on.
Additionally, if you notice that you’re not getting any better, you should also request to change doctors. You can change your doctor with a formal request through your workers’ compensation rep.
After putting in a formal request, you should be notified of your new physician. If your employer’s insurance carrier refuses to change your doctor, you need the help of a lawyer.
Nearly every state and Washington, DC allow victims of work-related accidents and injuries to change doctors at least once. If you’re having problems with the employer’s insurance carrier or network you need to move on. Contact the Washington, DC Office of Workers’ Compensation.
If you are already in touch with a lawyer, contact them with your concerns about your current doctor. They may be able to help you expedite the process of getting a new doctor on your case.
Call a Workers’ Comp Attorney in Washington, DC
If you are told that you are unable to obtain a new doctor or that the timeframe has passed you need a lawyer. Your employer’s insurance company must provide you with the chance at a second opinion. Moreover, you should not be forced to see a doctor that makes you uncomfortable.
You can change doctors at least once. There are known cases where doctors who work with insurance and workers’ comp claims try to cut short a person’s recovery time. Don’t let a doctor rob you of necessary recovery time or treatment.
Washington, DC Workers’ Comp Attorney
Working in Washington, DC comes with its perks. One of those perks is that your employer will take care of you for job-related injuries. If you were hurt on the job and since then have gotten subpar medical attention, get a second opinion.
For anyone who needs help, you can get a workers’ comp attorney involved in the process. Have someone on your side that is looking out for your best interest rather than some insurance company. Call the law offices of Aschraft and Gerel and get a free consultation with an attorney now.