Police work comes with a lot of risks. An injury can happen at any time during your job, whether in an altercation or as part of the repetitive tasks you need to do as part of your job.
If you were injured on the job, you are entitled workers’ compensation. Workers’ comp can help cover your medical expenses and part of your lost wages.
After an injury at work, your first instinct may be to go straight to your own doctor. However, if you are seeking workers’ compensation coverage, you will need to see the doctor selected by your employer first. If you refuse treatment from the doctor your employer selected, you could end up having to pay for your own medical treatment. This can lead to concerns and issues:
- Is the doctor on your side or looking out for the bottom line of the insurance company?
- Are you getting the full treatment and recovery time you need?
- Do you need to get a second opinion from a doctor you choose?
Changing doctors in a workers’ comp case
Even though you must see your employer’s selected doctor at the start of your case, you can seek permission later to switch to your own doctor or a different doctor. This can allow you to get a second opinion and make sure your injuries are fully treated before returning to work.
If you do switch doctors, your employer or the Workers’ Compensation Commissioner may request that you receive an independent medical examination (IME). You can have your own doctor present during the exam, but you will need to pay for your physician’s attendance.
To ensure that you receive the full compensation you are entitled to under the law, an attorney can help. A lawyer with experience handling workers’ compensation issues can help you through this process.