If you have been hurt on the job and aren’t sure whether you’re entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, you should contact our office right away. You only have a certain number of days to report your injury to your manager or human resources. If you miss this deadline, your claim will be denied and you may not have an option to appeal. This is why we suggest that you call one of our Atlanta workers comp lawyers within hours or days of suffering your workplace injury.
Here, we will discuss whether short-term employees are entitled to workers’ comp benefits. Many clients ask our workers compensation attorneys in Atlanta if they are still eligible for workers comp even if they’ve only worked for their employer for a few months. The truth of the matter is that it doesn’t matter how long you’ve worked for a company. In most cases, even if you’ve only worked for a company for a few weeks, you can still apply for workers compensation. However, if your employer can prove that you only took the job in order to set them up for a fraudulent workers compensation claim, you cannot expect to receive benefits. In fact, even our Atlanta workers comp lawyers will not be able to help you if this is the case.
Almost All Workers in Georgia Are Eligible for Workers Comp Benefits
Despite what many people may think, most workers in Georgia are eligible for workers compensation. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve worked for your employer or how many hours you work per week. Of course, if you were only part-time, you cannot expect to receive full-time workers comp benefits. What your Atlanta workers comp lawyer will do is determine what your average weekly wages were and ensure that your benefits are calculated properly.
This does not mean that every employee is entitled to workers’ comp. In fact, there are certain categories of workers who are not eligible to apply for workers compensation benefits in Georgia. These exemptions are standard in almost every state in the country. The groups that are not allowed to avail themselves of workers compensation benefits include the following:
- domestic workers such as nannies and housekeepers
- agricultural and farm workers
- seasonal workers
- casual employees
- railroad workers
- federal employees
- temporary employees
- independent contractors
If you happen to fall into one of these groups, there’s nothing your workers compensation attorney in Atlanta can do to get your claim approved. In fact, most of the time, your employer will not even accept a workers comp claim from an exempt employee. What your Atlanta workers comp lawyer can do is look to see if there’s another way that you can pursue benefits. For example, if you are a federal worker, there are special programs for federal employees who are injured on the job. If you are not entitled to benefits of any sort, then your Atlanta workers comp lawyer can file a personal injury suit against your employer instead.
There are Certain Requirements You Must Meet to Receive Benefits
To qualify for workers compensation benefits in Georgia, you must meet certain requirements. These requirements are rather consistent across the board. If your claim is denied, your workers’ compensation attorney in Atlanta will need to prove that you meet the criteria and that your claim should have been paid. The specific criteria to qualify for workers compensation include the following:
- your injury must take place on company property and on company time
- if you are a traveling worker or work from home, you still must show that your injury took place while acting within the scope of your employment
- you are required to report your injury to your supervisor or human resources department immediately
- you cannot be under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of your accident
- you may be denied benefits if you have a pre-existing condition related to the injury suffered at work
- you must agree to be treated by a state approved workers compensation doctor
- you must participate in your medical treatment
- you cannot be caught working the second job while collecting workers comp benefits
If you believe that you meet these criteria and your claim was denied, contact one of our Atlanta workers comp lawyers. What we will do is review your claim as well as the information sent by the insurance company. If we believe that you should have been approved, we will help you file an appeal. If this doesn’t work, we will have no problem filing legal action on your behalf.
Let One of Our Workers Compensation Attorneys in Atlanta Help
When it comes to workers compensation in Georgia, the facts related to your employment are not as important as the facts related to your workplace accident. As explained here, even if you have only worked for your current employer for a few months, you should still be entitled to workers compensation benefits. It all depends on whether your workers compensation attorney in Atlanta can prove that you meet the criteria for workers comp. If you do, your employer cannot deny you benefits simply because you are not a long-term employee. For all they know, you may have had intentions of staying there for the rest of your career.
If you are having a hard time getting your workers’ compensation claim approved, you should contact our office directly. Take the time to schedule a free, initial consultation with one of our Atlanta workers comp lawyers. They will take an impartial view of your case and determine whether or not you have a valid claim. Since we offer new clients a free consultation, and since our firm doesn’t charge clients anything upfront, you have nothing to lose. You can bet that your employer and their insurance carrier will have a team of lawyers representing them. The last thing you want to do is put yourself at a serious disadvantage by handling things on your own.