Attorneys at Lear Werts LLP represent Missouri workers who have been denied proper medical benefits after suffering a work-related injury, including serious injuries resulting from construction, warehouse, and other industrial accidents. We have also successfully represented employees who were terminated after filing workers' compensation claims with their employers.
Eligibility and Extent of Medical Benefits
Under Missouri Workers' Compensation Law, if you have suffered a work injury, you are entitled to medical treatment. Your employer or its insurer is responsible for making payments to your hospital and doctor until your injury or illness is resolved or alleviated; there are no deductibles or co-pays. Medical benefits include all costs for authorized medical testing and treatment, including physical rehabilitation, prescriptions, and medical devices. Also, your employer may be required by the Missouri Division of Workers' Compensation or the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission to furnish artificial legs, arms, hands, surgical orthopedic joints, or eyes for your lifetime if either agency finds that you may be partially or wholly relieved of the effects of a permanent injury by the use of such prosthetics.
While employers are required to cover the medical expenses of employees who become sick or injured while on the job, employees must also follow state-mandated medical treatment and coverage rules in order to receive full compensation for necessary medical treatment, including:
- Patient confidentiality is waived and all medical records relevant to treatment of the work-related injury are releasable to the employer
- Employers have the right to choose the treating doctor, and employees are generally prohibited from filing for a change in doctors
- Employees may be treated by doctors not authorized by their employer, but will be liable for payments
Because your employer has the right to choose your medical provider, your employer and its insurance company are not required to pay for treatment that you seek without their authorization. Therefore, if you need to see a doctor because of a work injury, you should tell your employer that you want to see a doctor. If your employer knows that you need treatment because of a compensable accident, your employer should tell you which doctor to see.
Seek Experienced Representation
If you have suffered a serious workplace injury, you are entitled to workers' compensation, and an important part of your settlement should include the payment of coverage of any medical expenses. Our attorneys will work tirelessly to ensure that your workers' compensation settlement accounts for all your injuries and provides you with the benefits you need to cover all of your medical expenses. To learn more about your rights and responsibilities under workers' compensation laws, please contact Lear Werts LLP today for a free initial consultation.