Accidents and injuries can happen unexpectedly in the workplace, leaving employees grappling with physical and financial burdens. Fortunately, Georgia has a workers’ compensation system in place to provide benefits to workers who suffer job-related injuries. To ensure you navigate the process smoothly, it is important to understand the rules and requirements involved in obtaining workers’ compensation in the state.
Who Is Required to Hold Workers’ Compensation Insurance in Georgia?
In Georgia, most employers are required to hold workers’ compensation insurance to protect their employees in case of on-the-job injuries. The law that any employer with three or more employees, including part-time workers, must carry this coverage to pay for work-related injuries. Coverage begins on the employee’s first day of work.
However, the following categories of employees are not covered by Georgia’s workers’ compensation system:
What Injuries Does Workers’ Compensation Cover?
Workers’ compensation in Georgia covers a wide range of injuries and illnesses. However, they must occur in the course of employment or as a result of the employee’s work activities.
For example, if an employee slips and falls while working, he or she would be eligible for a workers’ comp claim. However, if an employee gets into a car accident while driving to work in the morning, he or she would not qualify for a claim.
Common injuries include those resulting from accidents such as falls, equipment malfunctions, and vehicle collisions. Additionally, workers’ compensation covers occupational diseases or conditions that develop over time due to work-related activities, such as repetitive strain injuries or exposure to toxic substances.
If you are unsure whether your injury qualifies for workers’ compensation, contact an attorney. A lawyer who has experience in workers’ comp claims can assess your case and determine your eligibility for benefits.
How Do You File a Georgia Workers’ Comp Claim?
If you sustain a work-related injury in Georgia, it is crucial to report the incident to your employer as soon as possible. You must notify your employer of the injury within 30 days, or you could jeopardize your ability to file a claim.
After you report the incident, you will need to seek medical attention. Your employer should provide you with a list of approved physicians or the name of a Workers’ Compensated Managed Care Organization. A representation can help you make an appointment with a physician in the organization.
Then, you’ll need to complete a WC-14 Form (Notice of Claim/Request for Hearing/Request for Mediation). After sending the form to your employer and the State Board of Workers’ Compensation (SBWC), your employer’s insurance carrier should notify you about whether you were approved for benefits. If your claim was denied, you can file an appeal with the SBWC.
Do You Need an Attorney for a Workers’ Compensation Claim?
Navigating the workers’ comp process can be complex, especially after you have suffered a serious injury. In these situations, it is important to seek the help of a Georgia workers’ compensation attorney.
Your lawyer will have the skills, knowledge, and resources to guide you through the process and fight for the benefits that you deserve. After seeking medical care, contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible to discuss your next steps.