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Workplace Injury Frequently Asked Questions

WARNING: All of the information provided here is of a general nature only. The specific facts of your case may require a completely different answer. Do not base any decision with respect to your case solely on any of the answers found herein. Prior to making any decision with respect to your case, you should speak with a competent attorney who is familiar with the laws that relate to your case.

The workers compensation doctor says that I should have surgery, but I am frightened and not sure if I should go forward? If I refuse to have the surgery, do I lose my compensation?

Answer: The answer to this question really depends on the type of surgery, the risks involved, and how certain the doctor is that the surgery it would sure or alleviate your condition. No doctor can guarantee a result from any surgery, and all surgery carries a certain amount of risk, even the risk of death; however, if it is a simple procedure, your failure to follow the doctor’s advice could constitute an unjustifiable refusal of medical treatment and your employer could seek to cut off your benefits.

That being said, the Commission will not cut off benefits for refusal to undergo a risky procedure such as spinal fusion surgery. Everyone knows that such procedures carry with them the risk of paralysis and even death.

Because there are so many options and factors playing into any such decision, we urge you to contact us if you are facing this situation. You may need to obtain a second opinion from a private physician, at your expense or through your private health insurance.

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Virginia Beach Office

5500-B Greenwich Rd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23462

Elizabeth City Office
(by appointment only)
507 E Main St #K
Elizabeth City, NC 27907

If you are looking at this site, you or a loved one has probably been hurt. If that's true, you've come to the right place. Helping people who have been hurt is what we do. In fact, it is all we do. Joe Miller Law is a law firm concentrating exclusively on representing people who are injured by the carelessness of others or those hurt on the job. We provide the highest quality legal services to people who have been seriously injured. We practice Personal Injury law and Workmens' Compensation law in both Virginia and North Carolina.