Initial Stages of Your Workers' Compensation Claim
Hi everyone Coleen Pratt. Here I just want to say welcome and thank you for the opportunity to represent you. I know there are a lot of options out there when it comes to hiring an attorney, so I appreciate your confidence in our firm. I'm going to provide a series of videos to help you understand the workers' compensation process and to hopefully answer a lot of questions you're going to have along the way.
Now, you probably have received or you're going to receive a lot of documents relating to your workers' compensation case. Now that you have us there's no need to respond to those documents and there's no need to call us to let us know you received those documents. Rest assured, if some action needs to be taken we will take it. If we need you to fill out any documents to send to the insurance company, we'll let you know.
You'll also be receiving a notice of application that's generated by the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board. That's something that we filed in order to get a case number for you and to get your case started with the WCAB. The insurance company will also get notice of the application, and that's the time when the 90 days starts to run for the insurance company to either accept or deny your case, so it's an important piece of your case in terms of getting the case started and it also gives us a case number if we ever have to file for a hearing before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board.
If we talked about getting you to a doctor or switching doctors from your company doctor, please know that this process takes a little bit of time. The first thing we have to do is find a doctor on the medical provider network list and then seek authorization from the insurance company in order for you to see that doctor. Now, there are some doctors who won't even see you without obtaining all of your medical records before even securing an appointment, and unfortunately sometimes we can't get authorization from the insurance adjuster as quickly as we'd like. So the process can take up to four weeks sometimes, especially if we have to file for a hearing using that case number I just talked about.
So hang in there. I promise you as soon as we can the medical appointment for you, you'll be the first to know. In the meantime while you're waiting for a medical appointment from our office, keep treating with the doctor you're treating with, and if you need to go to the ER or be treated right away please don't hesitate to do so. Remember: your health and well-being is the most important part of this case.
If you are temporarily unable to work right now because of your work injuries and you're not receiving temporary disability from the insurance company, you have to apply for EDD state disability right away. Any doctor can certify you for these benefits and you can also do it online. You can visit www.edd.ca.gov and apply online.
EDD has two branches to it, if you will. One of the branches deals with disability benefits and the other branch deals with unemployment benefits. Make sure that when you're applying for EDD in your workers' compensation case if a doctor has you temporarily totally disabled and unable to work, make sure you file under the disability branch. If the insurance company starts paying you temporary disability benefits and you receive checks from the insurance company, make sure to stop EDD right away. You cannot receive both types of benefits at the same time.
Thanks for watching the introductory video. I know you're going to have a lot of questions and a lot of questions along the way as your case progresses. I'm providing a series of videos to answer the most commonly asked questions, and if there's any question that I haven't answered for you in these videos, feel free to shoot us an email. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we look forward to representing you. Thank you again for your trust in our firm.