Episode 8 – Rules on Shop Doctors (“Shop Docs”) in Michigan

Shop Docs Law In Michigan

What is a “shop doc”?

I would like to talk about work injuries and in particular doctors who are referred to you by your employer after an injury on the job. Many of us are familiar with the term “shop docs” or shop doctors. That’s the doctor a lot of companies will send you to if you get hurt on the job factories, in particular, have a doctor that they always send somebody to.

Michigan Law: Have to see the Shop Doc for the Frist 28 Days

Now as you can imagine these facilities are paid by the employer and they’re looking out for the employer’s interest so they don’t always look out for the workers’ interest.  Unfortunately, under Michigan worker’s compensation law, you must treat with the employer’s doctor the shop doctor for the first twenty-eight days after you are hurt.

You Can Treat With Your Own Doctor, But Your Employer Doesn’t Have to Pay For It.

You can treat with your own doctor if you want. Unfortunately, your employer or their insurance does not have to pay for it in the first twenty-eight days after the injury. This leaves many people having to see the shop doc for a while.

You Are Entitled to Treat With Your Own Doctor After 28 Days In Michigan

What you need to remember is after twenty-eight days you are entitled to treat with a doctor of your own choice. Many, if not all, worker’s compensation insurance carriers and employers will tell you that’s not true. Don’t believe them!  You have the right to treat with your own doctor after twenty-eight days.

It’s important for this reason: You want to get better. Therefore, you want to treat with a doctor that you trust. The doctor that will look out for your interest not necessarily how to get you back to work.

You want someone who’s placing your interests first and you need to see a doctor that you can follow up with and trust.

Getting Authorization for Your Doctor to Treat After 28 Days

The big issue that usually arises when it comes to treating with your own doctor is getting authorizations. I can pretty much guarantee I can get a bill paid if you see your doctor and your employer refused to pay it after 28 days,  but some doctors will not see you unless you have an authorization from the worker’s compensation carrier to treat.

Many workers compensation carriers will not authorize the treatment to go to your own doctor. They may have to pay the bill but unless there’s a court order there’s nothing that requires them to pre-authorized the treatment.

Contact Me If You Are Having Trouble Seeing Your Doctor After A Work-Related Injury

There are things you can do it to get around this and still get the treatment you need with the doctor you trust so after twenty-eight days get into your own doctor. If you have a problem and getting a bill paid or getting authorization to see the doctor, you need to contact worker’s compensation lawyer immediately even before the twenty eight days if you can’t. So if you have a question about your injury and who can treat you, contact me at (989) 725-8118

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