Workers’ compensation, commonly referred to as workers’ comp, is a term you probably recognize. It’s fairly well-known that workers’ comp insurance exists to help employees who become injured on the job. You appreciate knowing it’s there but haven’t thought twice about it, until now.
You’ve realized after suffering a recent injury at work that you have no idea what to expect. How do you know if you’re covered? What benefits are you eligible for? Who should the injury be reported to? Are the rules different in Georgia than other states? These are just a few of the many questions swirling around in your head right now. Refer below for answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about workers’ compensation in Georgia.
How do you know if you’re covered by workers’ comp?
Georgia law requires all business with three or more employee to carry workers’ compensation insurance (part-time workers included). Double-check your employer’s coverage by visiting https://sbwc.georgia.gov/ and clicking on, “Verify Workers’ Compensation Coverage.”
How long do you have to work for a company to be eligible for workers’ comp?
There is no time limit; your eligibility for workers’ comp begins on your very first day of work.
Who should your injury be reported to and when?
Report the injury to your supervisor immediately after it occurs. Your supervisor will then report the injury to insurance, and the claims process will begin from there. You have 30 days in the state of Georgia to report an injury but it is recommended that you do so right away. If you wait too long you risk losing your benefits.
What benefits are you entitled to?
If you are unable to work for more than 7 days, you are entitled to weekly income benefits. Your first check should be mailed within 21 days of your first day of missed work.
You are also entitled to medical benefits; these will vary based on your individual care needs. Workers’ comp insurance covers all authorized medical bills, prescriptions, physical therapy, testing and necessary travel expenses.
How much will you receive per week?
Your weekly income benefits will equate to two-thirds of your average weekly wage but cannot exceed the maximum of $575 per week.
How long do medical benefits last?
In Georgia, you are entitled to receive medical benefits for up to 400 weeks from the date of your accident. If your injury is considered “catastrophic,” you may be eligible for lifetime medical coverage.
If your questions weren’t answered above or you’re concerned about how your case is being handled, talk to an attorney who focuses on workers’ compensation cases. They have experience working with employers and insurance agencies and will be your biggest asset through this troubling time.