After a work injury, many people are able to take some time to receive treatment and see improvement. While many people fully recover, others do not. Maximum medical improvement (MMI) in workers’ compensation is a term used to describe situations where a person has reached the best level of improvement, meaning it is unlikely that you will fully heal.
Your doctors believe that you are at the highest level of improvement possible. Understanding MMI and how it works is critical to filing a workers’ compensation claim. While in the ideal environment, you would fully heal and go back to your life the way it was, that does not always happen, and your compensation for loss should reflect that.
At John Foy & Associates, we work closely with our clients to provide them with the hands-on support they need in situations like this which includes helping them obtain the compensation they need. Get a free consultation by speaking to an Atlantic workers’ compensation lawyer now. Let us help you with your workers’ compensation claim.
What Is MMI?
In most situations, your doctor’s goal is to help you fully heal from your injury. Whether it is a fall from heights, a broken piece of equipment causing injury, or the development of an illness, workers’ compensation is designed to help you cover your costs as you heal. However, not everyone can reach a level of improvement.
MMI describes when your doctor determines that your injury or other medical condition is not going to improve any further. Your doctor believes that no matter how much or what type of additional treatment you receive or medication you take, you will gain any improvement in your health.
Many people reach MMI and are fully recovered and ready to go back to their lives. Many others never reach a full level of healing. That means that they may be left with permanent physical restrictions or disabilities.
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What Happens After MMI Is Determined?
When a person reaches MMI, your doctor may tell you that you are released from care. Some people will still need to continue receiving care through follow-ups. Others are healed as much as they are going to be and released back to work.
What does this mean to you?
- If you are healed fully, your doctor may release you back to work unrestricted, meaning you can do the type of work you were doing.
- If full MMI is reached, workers’ compensation may stop providing you with benefits.
- If you reach MMI but are not fully healed, your workers’ compensation doctor will provide you with a disability rating. This could include permanent partial disability, which means you may be eligible for disability benefits going forward.
There are a few things to keep in mind here. First, permanent partial disability is a closely guarded process that falls under GA Code § 34-9-263. This code will outline the specific type of injury and the losses you have. At this point, your temporary total disability benefits, which are what you are receiving now while you are in the healing phase, typically will not be stopped automatically just because you are given an MMI rating.
You Have the Right to Appeal
What if you do not agree with the statement your doctor has made that you can recover more so? There are many situations in which individuals want and need to seek out additional care. You may have the right to obtain a second opinion from another doctor.
If your doctor determines you have reached MMI and no longer have limitations, this may also be an instance in which you seek out support from another doctor. If you do not agree with the disability coverage being provided to you or that your benefits should cease, we strongly encourage you to take action. You have the right to appeal these decisions and get additional support from doctors or other providers.
How Our Georgia Workers’ Compensation Attorney Can Help You
Our legal team is here to help you. We know how frustrating it can be for our clients to receive information about MMI and be unsure of what happens next. How do you get continued help? What if you want to keep trying to improve your health?
We can help you in various ways:
- Let our workers’ compensation attorneys provide you with insight into your legal situation. We can give you information about what MMI means in your case and what that means over the long term.
- Allow us to help you appeal decisions related to MMI and disability. If what the doctor is telling you is not accurate or not a real representation of your losses, let us help you.
- Enable our legal team to fight for you in obtaining the compensation you are owed.
It is always a goal to help people to recover physically and mentally from the injuries they face at work. Yet, there are many situations where this does not happen, and your losses can be far more than just the medical bills you have. Our legal team can help you determine what those losses may be, including loss of quality of life, emotional distress, ongoing pain, and long-term care.
If your injury makes it impossible for you to return to the work you are doing, you may need compensation for added training, or you may be unable to work. Review some of our most recent case results.
Set Up a Consultation with John Foy & Associates Today to Discuss Your Legal Options
Maximum medical improvement (MMI) in workers’ compensation is something you are likely to learn about when you have a claim. That does not mean you will agree with it, though. At John Foy & Associates, we help our clients to fight back against unfair assignments of health and care and help them to obtain the financial compensation they are owed in these situations.
Take a moment now to contact our Georgia workers’ compensation attorney to discuss your case at a free consultation. Allow us to work closely with you to pursue compensation owed to you in cases like this.