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  1. #1
    iwmi is offline Member
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    Questions on the Workers’ Comp

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? GA

    I am an IT professional and working in GA. I have been diagnosed with the Neck Cervical Spine Disease for 3 weeks. My normal activities have been limited by the disease, such as I cannot sit for working on the computer for more than a few minutes due to the pain on the right upper backside. If I have to work, I can only lay in the bed to work for a couple of the hours, break an ˝ hours, then work another couple of hours and so on.

    My doctor told that the illness might relate to my nature of the work, sitting in front of the computer. I have been under the physical therapy for about 2 weeks and there has been no sign improvement. The doctor has advised that if the physical therapy would not help in another week, the spine surgery would be recommended, and then I would be out of the work for about 6-8 weeks.

    I am a full time employee and I work 100% remotely from home. I have not stopped working and have not informed my sickness to my employer yet.

    My question, May I be qualified for the benefits of the Workers’ Comp? If yes, how can I proceed the process?
  2. #2
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
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    It is possible that your condition might qualify for a workers comp claim, yes. It is also possible that it might not. Only your workers comp carrier can say for sure.

    The way to start is to follow your company's procedures for filing a workers comp claim. If you do not know what they are, ask your supervisor, HR representative, or union representative if applicable.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  3. #3
    iwmi is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbg View Post
    It is possible that your condition might qualify for a workers comp claim, yes. It is also possible that it might not. Only your workers comp carrier can say for sure.

    The way to start is to follow your company's procedures for filing a workers comp claim. If you do not know what they are, ask your supervisor, HR representative, or union representative if applicable.
    Thanks CBG. I'd like to educate myself a little more about the Workers' Comp before talk to the employer's people. I have reviewed those hiring docs and the benefit enrollments. I found the Long Term /Short Term disabilities , but I could not find anything relating to the Workers' Comp.
    Please advise.
  4. #4
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
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    Workers compensation is a form of insurance that provides for the payment of medical bills and lost wages for illnesses or injuries that are determined to be directly (or in some cases indirectly) caused by the individual's employment. In every state but Texas, it is mandatory that employers provide workers comp insurance and in Texas it is strongly recommended. Neither you nor the employer gets to decide whether or not the condition is work related; that decision belongs to the workers comp carrier.

    I don't know GA workers comp law specifically but I do know that most if not all states have a limited window for the submission of a claim. There is no guarantee that your claim, once submitted, will be approved but if you miss the window for submission it's a pretty good guarantee that it won't be. So I would not recommend that you spend too much time educating yourself, but get thee to your HR department and discuss it with them pronto.

    FYI, filing a workers comp claim is a protected activity in all states. You cannot legally be fired for filing a workers comp claim anywhere in the US. So if that is your concern, be reassured.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  5. #5
    iwmi is offline Member
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    Thanks. But I have not lost completely the ability to perform the work. Please refer the open post. I can work now because i can do the work with lying down in the bed as stated, which I have not informed my employer yet.
    I may lose the capability for a certain period of the time for the surgery and the recovery from the surgery.
    Should I talk the HR and proceed the applications of Workers' comp now?
    Last edited by iwmi; 06-21-2012 at 11:21 AM.
  6. #6
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
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    There is no requirement that you be completely unable to work before workers comp can apply.

    Specifically what is your concern about applying? Maybe if I understood why you are evidently so reluctant to take action in this regard, I could answer your concerns more effectively.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  7. #7
    Willlyjo Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by iwmi View Post
    Thanks. But I have not lost completely the ability to perform the work. Please refer the open post. I can work now because i can do the work with lying down in the bed as stated, which I have not informed my employer yet.
    I may lose the capability for a certain period of the time for the surgery and the recovery from the surgery.
    Should I talk the HR and proceed the applications of Workers' comp now?
    I understand not wanting to approach your employer at this time concerning Workers Comp. benefits. Although they cannot fire you for filing such a claim, they can sure make it tough for you (if they really want to).

    Since you do have the ability to continue working, technically there isn't a dire need for you to approach your employer due to time constraints because your's is a "Continuous Trauma" type injury which would allow you to file a clam further on down the line if your injury gets worse (which I believe it will). IMHO, you should research the Worker's Compensation system thoroughly and then approach your employer with a claim. Waiting is not good in that treatment now may save you problems in the future regarding your injury.
    Last edited by Willlyjo; 06-21-2012 at 12:35 PM.
  8. #8
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
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    Okay. If you're determined that you cannot possibly file a claim without understanding every possible permutation of the workers comp system, read this:

    http://sbwc.georgia.gov/sites/sbwc.georgia.gov/files/imported/SBWC/Files/employee_handbook.pdf

    Pay particular attention to the portions that discuss making timely notice to your employer.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.

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