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How do I know what doctor to see?

San Diego, CA |

I was injured at work yesterday and taken to the ER via ambulance. I need to return to a doctor, my employer hasn't contacted me today so do i choose any doctor or do I have to use the employers doctor? Do I have to file a work comp claim? Do i have any relief in civil court? no third party liability.

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Attorney answers 5


By all means get treated by your own doctor. If you need to see a specialist let your doctor make the referral. Make sure you tell every provider you see that this is a worker’s comp. case.

Good luck.

DISCLAIMER: David J. McCormick is licensed to practice law in the State of Wisconsin and this answer is being provided for informational purposes only because the laws of your jurisdiction may differ. This answer based on general legal principles and is not intended for the purpose of providing specific legal advice or opinions. Under no circumstances does this answer constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship.



I don't have a PCP how do I find a work comp doc without going through my employer?


This is a Worker's Compensation matter and your care will be directed by your employer's work comp insurance company. It is very important that you contact a California Workers' Compensation attorney right away to help you with your claim. A WC attorney can help to ensure you get the appropriate care and treatment you need and to make sure the employer provides appropriate compensation and treatment. Best of luck.

All information provided is for informational and educational purposes only. No attorney client relationship has been formed or should be inferred. Our office only represents plaintiffs in personal injury matters such as wrongful death, liquor liability accidents, dram shop cases, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and other catastrophic injuries.


See your own Dr. for now but be sure to tell him/her you think it is a work comp case and tell him the history of how you were injured at work keeping in mind that what you say will be written in the medical record and will be used to help or hurt you later in the work comp case. You can find a work comp lawyer to help try Phil Cohen in Mission Valley. Good Luck!

Ray Ryan, Esq
San Diego Injury Law Center
402 W Broadway Suite 1910
San Diego, CA 92101


For workers' comp cases in San Diego, I recommend Olga Mandel in La Mesa. Give her a call at 619.644.2907. She'll give you good advice and, perhaps, representation.


Email me at ... if we can figure out the Workers Comp insurance carrier, I can suggest a few docs in the region. Larry Dodge MD is a San Diego Orthopedist (bone/joint specialist) on most Comp Insurer's Medical Provider Network.

NO, YOU CANNOT just pick any doctor, the doctor won't get paid, none of the studies the doctor requests will be authorized and you'll get no Temporary Disability payments. THE ADJUSTER WILL THROW A NON-NETWORK DOCTOR'S REPORT IN THE TRASH and ignore it.

YES you do need to file an Employee Claim Form for Workers Compensation (DWC-1, in attorney lingo). You need to do that immediately; if you could fax it to your work today, that would be best.

I'll try to pop in the link for the Claim Form. That begins an important '90-day' clock ticking and if you're going to have to wait 90 days for an adjuster to think over your claim, get that 90 days started TODAY. Fax the form and save the fax transmission report to show the fax made it to the company.

NO, YOU GET NO CIVIL COURT RECOVERY. Unless your boss failed to buy Workers Comp Insurance. if there's Comp Insurance, all your recovery comes through Workers Comp rules and regs.

See if you can find that poster at work that lists the Workers Comp insurer and the phone number... that will tell us who the Comp Insurer is (if it's larger, like Walgreens or WalMart of Costco, I already know it...those are self-insured) and I'll TRY to get you the list of docs that particular insurer approves (it's called a Medical Provider Network, MPN for short).