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The California labor code and the role of QMEs

Residents and businesses of California should be aware of the Labor Code and what it requires for those doctors who are a Qualified Medical Examiner (QME). This is important for those with workers’ compensation claims of injury on the job. Who are these physicians or evaluators?

According to FindLaw, the QME is appointed according to their expertise for a term of two years by the administrative director. Prior to appointment, they must pass an examination that shows they have the legal-medical competence needed for workers’ compensation.

The physician must also pass a course on disability evaluation report writing approved by the administrative director. Classes includes, but are not limited to, 12 hours of more of instruction.

The QME must have devoted at least one-third of total practice time to providing direct medical treatment or have been a medical evaluator on eight or more occasions in the 12 months prior to appointment. He must be board-certified in his area and has completed a residency. Evaluators must not have a conflict of interest in the case.

Handling disability on the job and being evaluated for workers’ compensation can be a complex process. A disability can have a tremendous effect on the worker as well as their family and their future. Workers’ compensation can help pay for medical costs as well as income lost. Some people have had claims denied and do not know where to turn. This it the time for a knowledgeable attorney to be consulted. They can help with ensuring the rights of the employee and guide him when it comes to using QMEs; they can also appeal the denial of a claim. Experienced legal help is an ally in helping get payments needed for medical treatment and lost wages. An expert attorney may offer valuable help.