When workers are injured on the job in South Carolina, workers’ compensation benefits are available to them. Workers’ compensation is a type of insurance purchased by the employer that provides benefits to hurt workers for things like medical expenses and lost income. Due to the fact that the insurance company is paying for any medical treatment you receive, they or your employer also have the right to choose the doctor you see.
In many cases, this isn’t a problem. Sometimes though, you may feel as though you were misdiagnosed, or are receiving improper treatment. In these cases, you may be able to get a second opinion. Under South Carolina’s workers’ compensation laws, there is a very specific procedure to follow when doing this. If you don’t and get a second opinion anyway, you may be left paying for those bills out of your own pocket.
Complete the Necessary Paperwork
The South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission stipulates that in order to get a second opinion for your work injury, you must complete a Form 50 to request one. You may also speak to the insurance company to request a second opinion. If they grant the request, make sure you get their approval in writing.
It is essential that you fill out Form 50 completely and properly. Failure to do so could result in your request being denied, which may prevent you from getting the diagnosis or treatment you need. A South Carolina workers’ compensation attorney can ensure the form is filled out properly, and can also speak to the insurance company on your behalf.
Once you file a Form 50 form, you will need to attend a hearing. During the hearing, you will present evidence to the Commission that you need a second opinion. Relevant evidence is also outlined by state law, which is another reason why working with an attorney is so beneficial.
After the hearing, the Commission will make a decision on your request for a second opinion. The Commission may make the decision right away, or you may have to wait before hearing if your request was approved.
Continue with Medical Treatment
While waiting to hear about the Commission’s decision regarding your second opinion request, it’s important that you continue getting treatment from the insurance company’s doctor. Refusing treatment at this point could seriously harm your workers’ compensation claim. It could also have a negative impact on your request for a second opinion. You should feel free to speak with the doctor about your concerns, alternative treatments, and the fact that you’ve requested a second opinion. Just make sure you do so calmly and respectfully.
Speak to a Rock Hill Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Help with Your Request
If you’ve been injured on the job and don’t think you are receiving proper treatment from the insurance company’s doctor, you need the help of an experienced Rock Hill workers comp lawyer At the Elrod Pope Law Firm, P.A., we are the experienced legal team that can help with every aspect of your request for a second opinion. We’ll ensure Form 50 is filled out accurately, and help you prepare for the hearing so you have the best possible chance of success. Call us today at (803) 599-3080 for your free consultation to learn more about how we can help with your claim.
Thomas E. Pope is a Personal Injury, Wrongful Death, and Medical Malpractice Attorney who practices in Rock Hill, Lake Wylie, and Lancaster, SC. He graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 31 years now. Thomas E. Pope believes in protecting the injured. Learn more about his experience here.