This post discusses if you can go to your own doctor in a NC Worker’s Compensation case. After being injured at work, you need medical treatment, but should you go to your regular doctor or somewhere else?
Unfortunately, you can only go to your own doctor in a NC Worker’s Compensation case under some circumstances. The insurance carrier for your employer can send you to the doctor of their choice in the beginning. However, under North Carolina law (NC Gen Statute 97-25), you can go to your own doctor with permission from the North Carolina Industrial Commission. The North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC) is the governing body for NC worker’s compensation claims. Cases are heard before a commissioner, who acts like a judge. If you are unhappy with the commissioner’s decision, you or your NC worker’s compensation lawyer can appeal the decision.
If you need help asking the N.C. Industrial Commission for permission to see your own physician, you should consider hiring an attorney who handles NC worker’s compensation claims. You may also be able to get a second opinion on your disability rating or on surgery. Knowing the law or hiring an attorney who does is critical to the outcome of your worker’s compensation case in fighting the insurance carriers who are trained in denying claims. Doctors who work for insurance carriers are motivated by the insurance carriers who hire them. These doctors do not know your medical history the way your own doctor does. When your injury requires surgery, it is always a good idea to get a second opinion from another doctor in the same field of specialty, because of the risks involved with surgery.
The Bishop Law Firm can help you request permission to go to your own doctor in a NC Worker’s Compensation case as well as get a second opinion. We represent Worker’s Compensation clients in Raleigh, Cary, Durham and surrounding areas in North Carolina. If you have questions about your medical care or your WC claim, contact us today at (919) 615-3095.