The Extent of Employers’ Obligations to Employees Continues to be Dynamic

From a defense perspective, the most common concern with defending a workers’ compensation claim is not whether the employee is entitled to benefits, but to what extent. While the employer certainly has statutory obligations when it comes to providing benefits to a workers’ compensation claimant, the employer also has rights. The claimant does not have carte blanche as to every aspect of her claim; there are reciprocal obligations. For example, the claimant is entitled to a choice of treating physician in a given specialty, but the employer has the right to have the claimant examined by its own choice of physician within that specialty as well. However, it becomes less clear what the employer’s obligations to a claimant are with other types of medical providers, such as pharmacies. As recently as last year, the Louisiana Supreme Court resolved a circuit split as to whether or not a claimant is entitled to his choice of pharmacy, or whether that right belongs…

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