WORK COMP MEDICAL BILLS
In general terms, an injured employee has the initial burden of showing that a work injury arose out of and was in the course of employment in order to be covered under Minnesota workers’ compensation law. If the injured employee can meet that burden, the employee must then show that any medical bills or treatment was reasonable and necessarily required to cure and relieve the effects of the work injury in order for those medical bills to be covered under Minnesota work comp law.
THE SUPREME COURT HAS CONSTRUED THE WORKS “CURE AND RELIEVE” TO MEAN “CURE” OR “RELIEVE”.
In the case Schutte v. Independent School District No. 281, the court expended upon the definitions of “cure” and “relieve”. In that case, after a human bite drew blood at work, the injured employee was tested for HIV, vaccinated against Hepatitis B, and told to return for follow-up testing. The employer refused to pay for the workers’ compensation medical bills stemming from the follow-up treatment. The employer claimed that since follow up treatment was preventative in nature for conditions that were never diagnosed, the treatment should not be covered. The court rejected this argument and held that:
providing reasonable treatment to prevent or reduce the probability of serious consequences is reasonably part of what the legislature contemplated under the concept of reasonable and necessary medical treatment. It would be absurd result to require an injured employee to actually contract a serious or even life-threatening disease before being allowed treatment reasonably consequent to his or her injury…What is important here is not the potential diagnosis but the fact that the treatment at issue is incidental to and necessary as a result of a work injury.
THIS IS A VERY BASIC EXAMPLE OF HOW AN INJURED EMPLOYEE MUST OVERCOME THE BURDEN TO GET MEDICAL BILLS COVERED UNDER MINNESOTA WORK COMP LAW.
However, the law in this area can get very complicated. Our Minnesota work comp lawyers know how to get your workers’ compensation medical bills covered.
If you were injured at work and your employer’s work comp insurance company has denied coverage for the workers’ compensation medical bills or treatment, call our experienced Minneapolis/St.Paul workers’ compensation lawyers for a free case review today.