Can I pick my own doctor to treat me during my workers’ compensation case?

Can I pick my own doctor to treat me during my workers’ compensation case?
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Video Transcript

People ask me if they have to use the workers comp doctor or can pick a different doctor to get treatment for their injuries.

Unfortunately, the short answer is you must use the workers comp doctor; the insurance company picks three doctors that they have a relationship with, and then you pick one of those three doctors to treat you for your injuries.

So, it’s in your best interest to stay with that doctor to maximize your benefits.

If you decide to use your own doctor, there are consequences.

One, the workers comp insurance company will not pay for any of the medical care. You will be paying your deductible and co pays at a minimum.

The worst case scenario is that your regular insurance pays for your care and then down the road, they discover that this should have been covered by workers compensation. They will then bill you for the entire amount that they have paid the doctors.

Two , the workers comp insurance company is most likely not going to listen to what your doctor has to say about your treatment plan or your ability to work, so you wouldn’t be getting your lost wage check. You would need to go to a hearing to force them to abide by your doctor’s out of work disability slip.

However there is an exception.

When the medical portion of your workers comp claim is denied, you get to pick your own doctor. You’ll be using your own health insurance and you won’t be getting reimbursed until you go to a hearing and receive a medical award. But thereafter, the workers comp insurance company has to continue to pay for your doctor’s treatment.

As an experienced workers’ comp attorney, I can help injured workers to pick from a panel of doctors if their care is being paid for, or if their case is denied, I can help them find a good doctor who will treat their injuries.


About the Author:

The Injured Workers Law Firm is a Richmond, Virginia based firm solely focused on serving clients with workers' compensation claims in Virginia. If you have questions about your benefits or if you would like more information on the Virginia workers’ compensation system, order our book, “The Ultimate Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Virginia” , or call our office today (804) 755-7755.