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Under Maryland Workers Compensation laws an injured worker is entitled to be repaid for mileage to and from doctors appointments. This will include physical therapy appointments, primary care appointments, orthopedic appointments, and any other reasonable and necessary appointment. Appointments for Independent Medical Evaluations are typically not covered as they are considered a litigation expense.
The right to reimbursement for mileage does not arise from statutory law, rather it has been held by the Maryland Court of Appeals, in Breitenback v. N.B. Handy Co, 366 Md. 467 (2001), to be a medical expense covered under the codified right to medical benefits. Likewise, payment of mileage is not to be considered “compensation” for legal purposes and should be considered a medical benefit.
What else is reimbursable under Maryland workers comp law?
Expenses that are reasonably related to medical needs are to be reimbursed by the workers comp insurer. These can include parking expenses, tolls, taxi and/or public transportation. While insurers are not obligated to pay for mileage when picking up prescription medication from the pharmacy some Maryland workers comp attorney‘s advocate and obtain this benefit for their clients.
Maryland workers compensation attorneys are paid on a contingency basis from any workers compensation settlement, permanency award, lost wages award, and past owed vocational payments. There is no legal authority for a workers compensation attorney to charge for the recovery of mileage.
When is Maryland workers comp mileage paid?
Mileage reimbursement should come on a regular basis as it is submitted to the workers comp adjuster however this is seldom the case. More often, a hearing will need to be requested before the Maryland Workers Compensation Commission. Just filing for the hearing is usually enough to get workers comp to make the mileage payment and going to the hearing is usually not necessary. While some Maryland workers compensation attorneys are reluctant to file for a hearing over mileage sometimes it is necessary. There is very little room for argument regarding mileage as long as the parties are somewhat reasonable in their expectations.
Mileage reimbursement rates
2011= .55 or .58
For older rates of mileage see the Maryland Workers Comp page.