Lessons Learned Trying to Gain Workman’s Comp: Part 4

by on March 18th, 2015
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Lessons Learned Trying to Gain Workman’s Comp: Part 4: Seeking Treatment For The Job Injury

If you haven’t read the previous articles, you can find them here.

Part 1: The Company Doctor

Part 2: Having a Previous Injury

Part 3: Reporting The Job Injury

On Monday I woke up early and went to make an appt. with my regular doctor. As my luck would have it she was out with appendicitis. Now what do I do? Had I have known then what I know now, I would have called another doctor or waited. However choosing to then call the company doctor was one of the worst mistakes I could have made.

I called the company doctor at her office and made my appt.

Mistake Number 5:

Choosing to make that phone call was the single worst mistake I could have made. So much so, that I mentioned it here in my first article about company doctors, but it is well worth repeating here.

Upon entering her office I filled out workman’s comp paperwork, sat down and waited. For three hours I waited until I was finally called back there. After entering the exam room and waiting for three hours I waited 20 more minutes.

The doctor walks into the room, sits down and asks me what brings me in. I filled out the workman’s comp paperwork, so she knows well and good what brought me in. However, I’m more annoyed by the wait than anything so I try not to scream at her.

I tell her about what happened at work on Friday night, how my back went out, and the numbness in my leg getting worse. I also tell her about how my supervisor reacted and responded. She immediately tells me she spoke with the workman’s comp adjuster and they talked, and that after talking, they both deemed this as being due to a previous injury and that she related it with the event last month when I was out for a week due to “exhaustion”. So my claim for worker’s comp was denied. Again, remember that you are allowed to seek out treatment from the doctor of your choice, and the company doctor is the very last person you should make aware of your injury.

I was caught more off guard than anything or I would have been angrier. How can my claim be denied before the doctor has even seen me? She then, at that moment, decides to go through a short medical history with me telling me that the previous injury on my leg has caused this back pain and that the MRI clearly shows previous trauma to my back. Rather than helping me get my back together and out of pain, she is busy making a case against me. This is what I have to go through? I knew right then, the fight was on. So I leave the doctor’s office with a denial claim on workman’s comp and a prescription for physical therapy. Also I now have to take more FMLA, of which I have 11 weeks left.

Keep in mind, my accident was 16 years ago. I have had all sorts of jobs since then and none of them have caused any problems with my back. Surely it wasn’t working six to seven days a week that may have caused my back to go out. It also couldn’t have been working a minimum of ten hour shifts that on many occasions went to twelve. No, I am supposed to believe it is my leg after an injury from 16 years ago. I am supposed to walk out of there and hold my head in my hands and wonder why my body failed me.

Instead, I just got very angry and decide only an attorney is going to help me here.

I drive back to work when my supervisor is there and demand an accident report be written up from the previous Friday when I got hurt. As my supervisor is reluctantly filling this accident report out he is severely misrepresenting what has happened. I refuse to sign it and them he finally tells me to write down whatever I wanted to write down. I told him, that wasn’t an option. I’m not writing for my health but I fully intend to write down exactly what happened. Everything from how I got hurt to how I was refused treatment and even essentially had my job threatened.

To view the rest of my reports about my battle with workman’s compensation, please go to my profile and subscribe to my articles. This way you can be updated when the rest are published.

Previous Articles:

Lessons Learned Trying to Gain Workman’s Comp: Part 1: The Company Doctor

Lessons Learned Trying to Gain Workman’s Comp: Part 2: Having a Previous Injury

Lessons Learned Trying to Gain Workman’s Comp: Part 3: Reporting the Job Injury


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