What happens if the company doctor doesn’t believe you’re injured, or isn’t treating your injury properly?
Do you have to treat with the company doctor after a work injury?
It’s an interesting question. What you do in those circumstances depends. We’ve talked about this before — there is not necessarily a requirement for you to treat with the company doctor. In order for you to be bound to treat with the company doctor, the employer has to do a bunch of things right.
If the employer has created a valid panel list and you are bound to treat with one of the company doctors for the first 90 days, then if you’re not happy with the doctor you’re treating with you can pick another one on the list. So that’s an option.
What else can be done if the company doctor isn’t helping?
It’s also advisable sometimes to go to your own doctor also. The insurance company doesn’t have to pay for any visit with a non-panel provider that you make in the first 90 days (assuming everything has been done right), but that doesn’t mean you can’t pay out of pocket for an office visit with a doctor you trust, to get an actual opinion that you believe to be true, so that you have some documentation that conflicts with what the company doctors might say.
So there are things we can do to be creative and help you deal with problems with the company doctor. Even in the first 90 days, even if you’re required to treat with them under the workers’ compensation act in order to have those bills paid.
The advice offered above is general in nature and may not be applicable to every case. Consultation with an attorney is highly recommended. Reliance on this advice does not represent the formation of an attorney-client relationship in the absence of a fee agreement with Mr. Hillsberg.