What are Your Rights?

Your Rights in Louisiana Explained

Insights from Our Baton Rouge Workers’ Comp Lawyer

If you are injured at work during the course and scope of your employment, Louisiana law provides you with certain rights. Unfortunately, sometimes these rights are ignored or disregarded by employers and insurance companies

These key rights are:

  • Wage replacement benefits while you are disabled
  • The right to select your own doctor
  • Medical payments for your treatment
  • Mileage reimbursements for travel related to medical treatment
  • Vocational rehabilitation if you are unable to return to your job
  • Supplemental Earnings Benefits (SEB) if you are unable to earn 90% of your pre-injury average monthly earnings
  • Monetary penalties if your benefits are not paid in accordance with law

What Are Indemnity Benefits?

Wage benefits are technically referred to as indemnity benefits. These benefits compensate you for a portion of your loss of income during the time that you are unable to return to work due to your injury. The benefits are 66% of your average weekly wage for the four full weeks immediately preceding your accident, subject to a statutory cap.

Does Workers’ Comp Cover Medical Expenses?

Medical benefits are provided for all medically necessary treatment related to the job injury. You have the right to be treated by a doctor of your choice at the insurance company’s expense. Even if you have been sent to a company doctor in the past, you may be able to change to a doctor of your choice and the insurance company will have to pay for it. In many cases, our Baton Rouge workers’ compensation lawyer can help you change doctors. Medical treatment is due until you have reached maximum medical improvement.

Am I Entitled to Mileage Reimbursement?

Mileage reimbursement for travel to and from medical appointments related to your injury are reimbursed. It is important to provide the date, point of origin, destination and mileage for each medical visit. Make sure to include round trip distances if you return directly to your home. I have provided a form if you have not been provided one by the insurance company.

Print or download the free mileage log.

Vocational Rehabilitation

Vocational rehabilitation is a service provided and paid for by the insurance company that attempts to help you find another job if you cannot return to work for your pre-injury employer. There are some good counselors, but many times vocational rehab counselors are trying to help the insurance company reduce or cut off your benefits.

Our Baton Rouge workers’ comp lawyer can help you deal with these counselors and get the most out of their services or limit the damage that they can do to your case. One of the biggest secrets to handling vocational counselors is to keep your own record of job search activities, so that you can keep track and be prepared to dispute the vocational counselor regarding whether jobs he or she identified were actually available.

Supplemental Earnings Benefits

If you are unable to earn 90% of your pre-injury monthly earnings, then you will be eligible for Supplemental Earnings Benefits (SEB). SEB will pay 2/3 of the difference between you pre-injury average monthly earnings and your post injury average monthly earnings, up to your maximum indemnity rate.

That sounds more complex than it is. Just think of it as a benefit that makes up some of your monthly loss of earnings attributable to the job injury, for some time after you return to work.

Monetary Penalties & Attorney Fees

If the insurance company or your employer treats you unfairly by unreasonably or arbitrarily denying you benefits to which you are entitled, you may recover monetary penalties against the insurance company or employer. The insurance company may have to pay your attorney fee. J. David Smith, Attorney at Law will gather all of the available documentation and determine whether or not you have a penalty case. If you do, our lawyer will aggressively pursue them.

Call (855) 973-1098 for a Free Consultation

Baton Rouge workers’ compensation attorney J. David Smith would be happy to speak with you personally, on the telephone, or by email about your case. He will explain what the insurance company owes you and why at no cost or obligation to you. Our firm is only one phone call away.

We represent injured workers all over the State of Louisiana. Contact us today for a free case evaluation! 

We Go Above and Beyond. Your Experience is Very Important.

  • “The respect Mr. David and his staff shows you and your family in one of the worst times you can have in life, speaks volumes about his character.”

    Clay Y.

  • “He takes alot of time out with his clients to give his undivided attention when handling your case.”

    Engra M.

  • “He turned an awful situation into a good experience.”

    Dee B.

  • “He always kept me in the loop about the progress of my case.”

    Benjamin S.

What J. David Smith, Attorney at Law Can Do for You

  1. Handles all communication with your employer and the insurance company right away
  2. Trusted by other law firms in our area and we often get referrals from other attorneys
  3. Named as one of the top 100 Injured Workers’ Advocates nationally by WILG
  4. Serves as Bar Examiner for the Louisiana Supreme Court’s Committee on Bar Admissions
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