My brother got injured at work and his employer is blocking care. Is this right?

 My brother (19M) hurt his leg at work. He has great difficulty walking and his employer told him that he has to wait to get referred to the employer's doctors in order to get care. It has been 7 days and my brother's injury is getting worse without any care.

He has been calling in every day since the injury but received a call today telling him he needs to report to work even while unable to walk.

My brother is under the impression that he cannot go to a regular doctor to get care since his management told him he needs to wait to go to their doctor.

Is this correct?

A few more details: he just started working for this employer 4 months ago and is full-time.


Your brother needs to go to the ER ASAP. When he goes, he needs to be very clear that this is a work-related injury so that they do not bill him. Make sure he keeps copies of all documentation. He should've gone to the ER as soon as he was injured - employers are not allowed to prevent their employees from getting emergency care if needed when they are injured on the job. From the State of CA guidebook for injured workers: "Your employer must make sure that you have access to emergency treatment right away". Have your brother read through the guidebook, especially chapter 2 so that he knows what he is supposed to do.

If he hasn't done so yet, he needs to fill out a Worker's Compensation claim form: His employer was supposed to give him one within 1 working day of reporting the injury. He fills out the employee portion and returns it to his employer, and then they are required to give him a completed copy of the form within 1 working day. The insurance company has 90 days to accept or deny the claim, but while the claim is being adjudicated he can get up to $10,000 in medical care from an approved doctor. After he has the first visit with the work's doctor, he can choose to see any doctor within their network.

Here are the phone numbers for all of the Information and Assistance Units in CA: He can call his local office on Monday and they can help him, but it sounds like he's going to need a worker's comp attorney to force his employer to do what they're legally required to do.

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