If you are hurt on the job in Louisiana, unable to work due to the injury and if your injury is covered by Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act, your employer and its workers’ compensation insurer are obligated to pay indemnity benefits, necessary and reasonable related medical bills, travel expenses and vocational rehabilitation benefits. In the event of death, benefits are payable to your survivors.
These payments are made regardless of fault on the part of the employer or employee. In exchange for the benefits, the employee waives the right to sue his or her employer in tort for pain and suffering damages. However, there are exceptions. If you find yourself in a similar situation you should consult a Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyer for more information about what benefits you may be eligible for.
LOUISIANA WORKERS COMPENSATION INSURERSAn employer often refuses to provide the injured employee with the name of its insurer in an attempt to try to discourage the employee from making a claim. If this is the case, get a Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyer. Action on your part—a letter to the employer or filling a disputed claim—may be required to determine who the insurance carrier is. Popular insurance companies include: Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Corporation (LWCC), CNA, AIG, Liberty Mutual, Travelers, Sea Bright Insurance Co., The Hartford, and Chartis.
INDEMNITY BENEFITS FOR LOST WAGESIndemnity benefits are typically two-thirds of your average weekly wage. Indemnity benefits include temporary total disability, supplemental earnings benefits, permanent partial disability and permanent total disability.
MEDICAL BENEFITSAccident related medical bills are paid by the employer and its workers’ compensation insurer. The workers’ compensation insurer’s approval is required for treatment beyond $750 unless the care is provided under emergency conditions.
A health insurer’s payment of job injury medical expenses will extinguished the injured employee’s claim against her employer for those medical expenses under the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act. However, the claim is not extinguished for direct payment by the employee, a relative or friend of the employee, or by Medicaid, or other state medical assistance programs.
Furthermore, if a health insurer has paid the medical expenses, the health insurer has a right of reimbursement against the employer and their workers’ compensation insurer for medical bills it paid in connection with an employee’s workers’ compensation claim.
CHOICE OF PHYSICIANThe injured employee has the right to choose one treating physician in any field or specialty. The employer or insurance carrier’s permission is required to change treating physicians within the same field or specialty after the employee’s initial choice. An emergency room physician is not considered the choice of the employee.
If the employer or its insurer provides the injured employee with a choice of physician form to select his or her own physician, the injured employee is not required to choose the company’s doctor; rather, they may choose their own physician. However, an injured employee must submit to an examination by a company doctor paid for by the company or its insurer as often as may be reasonably necessary.
VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION BENEFITSGenerally, if you are unable to return to your job of injury or an alternative job with the same employer, the employer is required to do a labor market survey to find jobs available in your geographic area for job duties approved by your doctor.
LUMP SUM SETTLEMENTSLOUISIANA DEPARTMENT OF LABOR DISTRICT OFFICESThere are several Louisiana Workers Compensation District Offices that serve specific parishes. For a complete list of the Judges, Mediators, Dispute Resolution Specialists, mailing addresses, phone numbers, fax numbers, email addresses and Parishes served, see this chart.
Lavis Law Firm handles disputed claims for compensation and workers comp settlements at the Louisiana Office of Workers Compensation District Office, which are located in Harahan, New Orleans, Houma, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, Covington, Alexandria, Monroe and Shreveport.
If you need help or have any question about your job injury, call me, a Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyer, at 866-558-9151, or submit your inquiry online. Please be advised that you may be facing important legal deadlines so don’t delay.