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Who Picks Your Workers’ Compensation Doctor in Louisiana?

On Behalf of The Law Office of Bruce C. Betzer Oct. 7, 2022

When you’re injured on the job, your number one concern is getting better – and getting back to work as soon as you can. Your doctor is critical to that process.

In many states, injured employees are restricted to only certain doctors that will accept workers’ comp assignments, or they may be required to pick from a small list of providers chosen by their physician. Louisiana is different.

You Can Choose Your Own Physician – but You Need to Choose Carefully

In this state, you have the right to not only select your primary treating physician for your case from you can also exercise your own discretion over which specialists you see.

If you want your regular doctor to also see you for your workers’ comp injuries, you can do that – with one caveat: Your doctor has to get permission from your employer or their insurer to continue any treatment valued above $750. While this is a legal hoop you have to jump, your employer or their insurer cannot deny your request for care without cause.

You also need to give your choice of physician and any specialists some serious thought, because changing physicians is not as simple as it is to start with one. If, for example, your primary care sends you to an orthopedic specialist and you don’t think their treatment plan is working, you cannot switch to a different orthopedic specialist without the insurance carrier’s consent.

That may not be easy to come by, since workers’ comp insurers are usually (and unfairly) suspicious that patients want to change providers simply so they can “shop around” for a patient-friendly doctor.

You May Also Be Asked to Go for A Second Medical Opinion by The Insurer

Sometimes an insurer will have questions about an injured workers’ condition or care and want a second medical opinion. If so, you do have to go to a doctor of their choosing. If you refuse, your benefits will most likely be suspended.

Workers’ compensation claims are notoriously difficult to navigate without help – but you don’t have to go it alone. Take steps to protect your rights today.