In Alabama, you are entitled to workers' compensation benefits if: (a) you are an employee, (b) your employer is subject to the Alabama Workers' Compensation Act, (c) you are injured on the job, and (c) your injury arises out of and in the course of your employment.
If you suffer an injury while on the job, you should immediately provide the employer notice of the accident/injury and confirm that the employer has filed a "First Report of Injury". The Alabama Workers' Compensation Act requires that you report the accident/injury within five (5) days; however the law also allows the injury to be reported up to ninety (90) days following the accident. The Courts have held that an employer's "actual knowledge" of an accident/injury is sufficient to meet the notice requirement.
Upon providing your employer with "notice" of the injury/accident, the employer should then direct you to a medical provider, so as to allow proper medical care. Note that you do not have the ability to choose your own physician, pursuant to the Alabama Workers' Compensation laws. Should you fail to proceed with care via an "authorized medical provider", the employer or its insurance carrier will likely refuse to pay for the medical services. Additionally, your health insurance carrier will likely deny payment for such treatment, as most health insurance policies contain an exclusion relative to "on the job injuries".
Following an on the job accident you may be entitled to temporary total, temporary partial, permanent partial or permanent total disability benefits. The payments which the employer is required to make, while you are off work and unable to work, immediately following the accident, are referred to as Temporary Total Disability (TTD) Benefits. Once you reach "maximum medical improvement" (MMI) the employer or its insurance carrier will likely terminate payments to you. When the doctor assesses you as reaching MMI, this does not mean that you are capable of returning to work, only that you are at a point where additional recovery is unlikely. Regardless, the employer or insurance carrier will likely terminate payments to you. Most likely any additional payments to you will be in the form of Permanent Partial (PP) or Permanent Total (PT) benefits. The amount of benefits will depend upon your wages during the fifty-two (52) weeks prior to the date of the accident and the physical impairment suffered by you. Note that the Courts have held that the impairment assigned by the treating physician is not the same as the physical impairment, as assigned pursuant to the Workers' Compensation Act.