How Long Does a Workers’ Compensation Claim Take?
It’s important that when you do something, that you do it right the first time. This is why you don’t want to rush your Workers’ Compensation claim.
The amount of time that it takes to go through a Workers’ Compensation depends on the nature of the case. For example, a claim for a finger laceration can be a lot less time than a low back injury.
An injured worker has 30 days to initially report their injury, so if the injured worker waits, the claim has already been delayed. It’s important to file your claim as soon as you’re injured to get the process started. The sooner your file your claim, the sooner it can be settled.
How long will my claim take to get accepted?
According to the law of the state of Georgia, the insurance company has 21 days to investigate your claim. They will accept or deny your claim at that point. This is the norm, but there are exceptions to every norm. Sometimes the insurance company can take up to six months or more to investigate and accept or deny the claim. If the insurance company takes longer than three weeks to investigate and make a decision on your claim, it’s advised that you seek a consultation with a Georgia Workers’ Compensation attorney to protect your rights.
How long it takes for a non-litigated case depends on the injury and whether or not light duty is available. If it’s a minor injury and light duty is available, then the claim may only take several weeks from beginning to end. If it’s a more complicated injury like a fracture or a herniated disc and light duty isn’t available, then the claim could take several months or more.
If a claim is contested or litigated, then it could extend the shelf life of the claim by anywhere from a few months. If an Independent Medical Examination is warranted, then it could be a few month’s wait until the injured worker is able to see the doctor. The ligation could take anywhere from 8 to 12 months. The trial itself is spread out over the course of several months, and can be quite exhaustive.
After the claim is settled, it can be a few months before you receive your settlement benefits. The attorney should constantly be reminding about payment if 14 days have gone by since the settlement award has been issued and no payment has been made.
There are cases when an injured worker is permanently and totally disabled. In this case, their claim never really ends because they will always have some sort of medical treatment. Especially in these cases, it’s important to have an attorney that you can trust like Bobe and Snell.