NH Workers’ Compensation Reimbursement – In a recent decision, Appeal of Northridge Environmental, LLC, the New Hampshire Supreme Court clarified that a workers’ compensation claimant may be entitled to reimbursement for medical treatment that the injured worker receives from a non-traditional provider.
Medical Services Reimbursement
In the Northridge case, the injured worker’s wife provided him medical services related to his work injury. Although the injured worker’s wife did not have any formal medical training, she provided him care by doing such things as cleaning his wounds, bathing him, dressing him, aiding him in the use of the bathroom, helping him move around, and constantly supervising him. The injured worker sought reimbursement from the workers’ compensation carrier for the services his wife provided. The carrier denied the request for reimbursement, taking the position that it was not required to pay for services rendered by the injured worker’s wife because she did not qualify as a health care provider.
Spouse Can Qualify as a Health Care Provider for Reimbursements
After multiple hearings at the New Hampshire Department of Labor, the case ultimately made its way to the New Hampshire Supreme Court. The Supreme Court determined that the petitioner’s wife qualified as a “health care provider” within the meaning of New Hampshire workers’ compensation law because she provided “health services.” In support of this conclusion, the Court noted that the injured worker’s wife acted pursuant to a doctor’s prescription when she provided services to him, and that her services aided in his recovery. Because the Court concluded that the injured worker’s wife qualified as a health care provider, the Court held that the workers’ compensation carrier was required to pay for the services that she provided.
If you need assistance with an issue concerning New Hampshire workers’ compensation law, you should consult an attorney experienced in representing injured workers in New Hampshire workers’ compensation cases such as Benjamin King at Douglas, Leonard & Garvey. Attorney King can be reached at 603-224-1988 or fill out our online contact form.