If you were hurt on the job, you may be entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Georgia law requires employers to provide wage replacement and medical care to employees who were injured in an accident. Workers’ compensation is a “no-fault” system. Because of this, you can receive workers’ compensation benefits in Georgia, even when your employer is not directly responsible for your injuries. However, this also means that you cannot sue your employer in exchange for benefits, even if your injury is your employer’s fault. If you believe you or a loved one is entitled to workers compensation for injuries sustained while working or that your employer is responsible for, contact our experienced team of Savannah workers compensation attorneys.
Generally, an injured Georgia worker can be entitled to workers’ compensation for medical expenses, temporary disabilities or permanent disabilities. At Roden + Love, LLC, our Savannah injury lawyers represent clients who have suffered traumatic workplace injuries, permanent disabilities, as well as other injuries while on the job. If possible, call us as soon as possible after suffering an injury. Our workers compensation lawyers in Savannah, GA can help you through the entire workers’ compensation process and avoid having your claim denied.
Common types of workplace injury claims that we represent may include:
- Automobile accidents
- Truck accidents
- Chemical or toxic exposure
- Construction accidents
- Lifting, crush injuries
- Slip and fall accidents
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Burn injuries
From carpal tunnel to exposure to asbestos and closed-head injuries, we are ready to pursue adequate compensation to ensure that you get the medical care and financial compensation which you are owed.
Catastrophic claims present particular challenges in workers’ compensation. By definition, these claims involve injuries that are debilitating in nature and result in a high level of permanent disability. These catastrophic work injuries can be so severe that they prevent you from ever returning to the work force.
Although catastrophic injuries make up a small percentage of claims, they account for 20 percent to 30 percent of total medical spending in workers’ compensation. Examples include:
- Brain injuries
- Partial, total, or industrial blindness
- Paraplegia or quadriplegia
- Severe burns, second or third-degree burns to a certain percentage of the body
- Multiple traumas or amputations or lost limb
- Severe spinal cord injuries
These types of injuries are medically complex and costly, often requiring sophisticated medical care, rehabilitation, and equipment, such as walkers, wheelchairs, lifts, or ramps. Due to the severity of these injuries, claimants are unable to resume “normal” life activities. They’re often unable to return to work, even after undergoing physical and occupational therapy.
Even if your injury does not fall into one of these categories, you may be entitled to catastrophic benefits if an injury permanently prevents you from obtaining and maintaining gainful employment. For severely injured workers, our Savannah workers’ compensation attorneys at Roden + Love may be able to help you secure a catastrophic designation and a large settlement for your injuries.
At Roden + Love, we are sensitive to the intense emotional, psychological and financial issues families are burdened with when a loved one suffers a catastrophic injury in the workplace. Our experienced workers compensation attorneys in Savannah, GA will investigate all possible causes of injury while personally consulting with injured clients and their families about legal, medical and financial options.
If your workers’ compensation injury is designated catastrophic, you are entitled to additional benefits not available to normal workers’ compensation recipients. Unlike standard temporary total disability benefits which are limited to 400 weeks, a catastrophic injury entitles you to a lifetime of weekly payments while you are unable to work. Similarly, catastrophic claimants are entitled to additional rehabilitation services and payment of certain costs of living that have increased as a result of the catastrophic work injury.
Income Benefits (TTD/TPD)
In Georgia there are two types of income benefits: TTD (temporary total disability) and TPD (temporary partial disability). In order to qualify for income benefits, you must be off work for seven consecutive days.
TTD (Temporary Total Disability)
If your job injury forces you to miss time from work, you are probably entitled to weekly payments of income benefits. With a few exceptions, your weekly benefit amount is based on the wages you were earning at the time of your injury. Your TTD income benefits are calculated by taking ⅔ of your average weekly wage for the thirteen weeks prior to your date of accident subject to a statutory maximum (for injuries prior to July 1, 2013 this was $500 per week and for injuries occurring after July 31, 2013 this rate is $525). This is not taxed. TTD is paid weekly while you are completely prevented from returning work. If your injury is not deemed “catastrophic” by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation you could be entitled to TTD benefits for up to 400 weeks from the date of the original accidents. If you are not receiving the weekly benefits to which you are entitled, or feel you are being paid less than your correct rate, contact the Savannah, GA workers compensation attorneys at Roden + Love today.
TPD (Temporary Partial Disability)
TPD benefits may be owed to you if you suffer a wage loss due to your work injury. TPD is owed to you when you are able to perform some work under light-duty restrictions but your earning capacity is reduced. If you were injured and returned to work at a lesser paying job, you may be entitled to TPD benefits for up to 350 weeks from the date of the original accident. With TPD benefits, you are entitled to receive ⅔ of the difference between your average weekly wage before and after your accident.
An outline of the TPD as well as the TTD payment procedures can be found in O.C.G.A. Section 34-9-261 and 262.
Permanent Partial Disability Benefits (PPD)
The most common type of workers’ compensation claim is one for permanent partial disability (PPD). PPD benefits are paid to people who are not totally disabled but who have some type of lasting impairment or who are only capable of returning to modified or lower-paying work. Findings regarding PPD are not usually made until a person has reached “maximum medical improvement” (MMI) as determined by a medical professional.
Unlike TTD and TPD, this benefit relates entirely to your level of physical disability, not your earning capacity. An employee may be entitled to this benefit even if they never missed a day of work or lost any wages due to an injury. PPD is based entirely on a formula that takes into account your percentage of impairment (as determined by your doctor, not your employer), the part of the body impaired, and your compensation rate. However, PPD benefits will not begin until after an employee stops receiving weekly TTD or TPD payments.
The Savannah workers’ compensation attorneys at Roden + Love can guide you through the workers’ compensation process to ensure you are receiving the most benefits from your work-related injury, including a full PPD payment. Also if you have lost a loved one as a result of a workplace accident, contact our experienced wrongful death attorneys in Savannah, GA for a free consultation.
Prompt Quality Medical Treatment
While Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws give your employer a large degree of control over your treatment, an experienced attorney can often help you with stingy, unresponsive adjusters and doctors. You have the right to prompt, quality medical treatment with all necessary expenses covered. For many, another important component of Georgia workers’ compensation law is the right to be treated by doctors of their choice. We know that problems getting approved for the treatment you need and getting your medical bills paid are extremely stressful, and that they may even impede your recovery.
Unfortunately, disputes are common, especially when the injuries suffered are serious and may require costly testing procedures or surgery, treatment by specialists and ongoing care. At Roden + Love, we are dedicated to helping all of our clients get the best possible care from highly qualified doctors of their choice.
Treatment covered by the workers’ compensation system includes the following:
- Orthopedic care and surgeries
- Physical therapy
- Chiropractic care
- Counseling for emotional harm as a result of the accident
- Rehabilitation services for catastrophically injured workers
- Any treatment that is reasonably required and appears likely to affect a cure, give relief, or restore you to suitable employment
Our workers comp attorneys in Savannah, Ga will advocate on behalf of injured workers throughout Georgia when disputes arise with their employer over medical care. Types of disputes may include:
- Making sure the care you are being offered is reasonable and working to secure a change in your care if it is not.
- Fighting make sure the care your physicians have recommended is provided when insurance companies delay or refuse to authorize treatment.
- Contesting and appealing any unjust claim denial, whether the reasons given involve medical evidence, employment status or other factors.
- Making sure you receive all the compensation for lost income that you deserve while you are unable to work
- Resolving problems getting the quality medical treatment you deserve, including being denied approval for specific services or told you cannot see the physician of your choice.
If you have questions about your right to receive quality medical treatment provided by the insurance company, contact the legal team at Roden + Love, LLC. There should not be any added hassle to receive the medical treatment you deserve. Don’t put up with the insurance company’s’ refusal to provide medical treatment. Relentless pursuit of your right to the medical treatment you deserve is our first priority. We fight to help you after a workplace injury so you never feel alone throughout the complicated process.
Unfortunately, it is not always easy if you have suffered a workplace injury or you have lost a loved one as a result of being involved in an accident at work to receive the compensation you need. At Roden + Love, LLC, our Savannah, GA workers comp lawyers represent injured workers in Coastal, South Georgia, and throughout the entire state, we help you get the benefits you deserve. If you have been injured at work, call Roden + Love for assistance right away and let us fight for your rights. Contact our firm today at 844-RESULTS for a free consultation.