Document Type

Peach Sheet


The Act makes a variety of changes to Georgia's workers' compensation law. First, the Act increases the penalties to be paid by employees who fraudulently retain income benefits to which they are not entitled. The Act also amends the workers' compensation law as it applies to administrative hearings by: (1) allowing the admission of laboratory reports when accompanied by an affidavit from the laboratory, which eases the authenticity requirements, and (2) making the time requirements set forth in title 24 of the Code inapplicable to workers' compensation proceedings. Further, the Act provides for a specified means of determining temporary partial benefits. Additionally, the Act eliminates time restrictions on when an employee may change physicians without authorization from the Workers' Compensation Board. Next, the Act adds her to its language in order to make the statute gender-neutral. The Act disallows compensation payments for death or disabilities caused by a subsequent nonwork related injury. The Act also clarifies the legislative intent under Code section 34-9-204 to codify existing case law, strikes Code section 34-9-127, and corrects a typographical error in Code section 34-9-243. Additionally, the Act allows insurers and self-insurers, who are required to pay into a general state fund on behalf of recipients without dependents, a means of recovering money paid to the state fund if dependents are thereafter located. The Act also allows the payment of permanent, partial disability benefits to employees who sustain hernia injuries in the course of employment. Finally, the Act gives the Workers' Compensation Board the discretion to pay a claimant's attorney's fees directly from a trust fund, as opposed to forcing an attorney to collect fees from the claimant.

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