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What are the steps to collecting workers' compensation?

Injured workers aren't probably thinking much about who is paying for medical care when they are first injured. However, after receiving treatment, many likely want to know what they should do next. Here is how the workers' compensation process goes in Louisiana. 

You have a right to seek medical care from the physician of your choice. You should explain to the physician that your injury is work-related. Also give the doctor the name of your employer and tell him or her that the insurer is the Louisiana Workers' Compensation Corporation, or LWCC.

If you are prescribed medication for your injury, the cost of those prescriptions is covered by LWCC. In order to avoid paying out-of-pocket, you can take a First Fill form to the physician on your first visit. Mail order pharmacy services are also available, which means your prescriptions can come right to your door.

Getting back to work is the ultimate goal. In order to reach this goal, a return-to-work plan is created. A claims representative for LWCC will go to your workplace, analyze what your do and identify work that you may be able to perform until you are completely healed. Photographs, video footage and a written report are sent to the doctor who is treating you. He or she will then determine when you should be able to go back to work, with any restrictions in your job duties noted.

Workers' compensation also provides injured workers pay for being unable to work. The average weekly wage for a worker is calculated by averaging his or her pay for the previous four weeks. If the worker will collect compensation for temporary total disability, then he or she will get 66.67 percent of his or her AWW. There is also a supplemental earnings benefit that some injured workers might be entitled to for up to 520 weeks.

As you can see, there are many steps to collecting workers' compensation, and that's only if your claim is not denied. If that happens, an attorney experienced in Louisiana workers' compensation cases can provide you with additional information on how to proceed with your claim.

Source: Louisiana Workers' Compensation Corporation, "Benefits & Claims," accessed Oct. 02, 2015

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