One of the most overlooked financial costs when it comes to workers’ compensation is the cost of traveling to and from your appointments. After a serious injury, you could be facing multiple appointments a week—medical exams, follow-ups, treatments, physical therapy—none of which are guaranteed to be local. The need for care from specialists (especially after a serious work injury) means you could be traveling hundreds of miles a week just for medical-related appointments.
Georgia’s workers’ compensation law recognizes the travel expenses that injured workers incur during the course of their treatment. If you’re receiving workers’ comp benefits, you need to keep your gas receipts, log your travel miles, and keep any receipts for meals or hotel stays. You can be reimbursed for these costs for up to a year after each purchase.
Below, we discuss the specific rules laid out by Georgia’s workers’ compensation laws.
What Types of Travel You Can Get Reimbursement For?
Georgia law says that any medical-related travel expense is fair game for mileage reimbursement.
Specifically, you’re entitled to reimbursement for travel to and from:
- Your authorized doctor
- Your independent/insurance medical exam (IME)
- Your hospital
- Any specialist referrals (e.g. physical therapy)
According to current statutes, you are entitled to up to $.40 a mile in reimbursement (which is why documenting your appointments and trips is so vital).
For Long-Distance Trips
Trips exceeding a required travel time of 4 hours also entitles you to additional benefits.
- $30 in reimbursement for meals
- $80 of reimbursement for lodging
While you’re not entitled to meal costs or hotel expenses past these caps, $110 is a sizable reimbursement for an overnight trip. As someone who is not currently working and is trying to get back into fighting form for work, every little bit of your cash makes a difference—and travel expenses add up fast.
Let’s say that you travel 8 hours a week for medical care, with half of it spent on a trip to see a specialist in another county. That comes out to $192 in mileage reimbursement, with $30 for meals. In any situation, $222 a week (nearly $1,000 a month) in travel costs is a sizable amount of money to spend on just getting to your doctor and back home again. That’s not even accounting for the cost of medicine or treatment.
How to Get Reimbursement for Mileage & Travel
Save your receipts, document your trips, and print out your routes on Google Maps or a similar app—an attorney can include them in your workers’ compensation claim to ensure that you receive every penny you’ve spent on your medical care.
If you’ve been severely injured at work, concerns like the ones above are only one of the many ways an Atlanta workers’ compensation attorney would have your back. The law firm of Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. has secured millions of dollars for injured workers, helping them get back on their feet without financial strain or worry. With more than 26 years of experience, you can trust that we know how to take care of you and yours.
Give us a call at (888) 665-7699 or contact us online for a free evaluation of your case. We can help you understand how much you’re entitled to, what you need to do to get it, and how we can help.