Tennessee Workers Comp
Tennessee Workmans Comp - Compensation Law and Attorneys

Tennessee workers comp is administered by the Department of Labor and Workforce Development in Nashville, TN. The Department helps inform employees of their benefit rights and responsibilities. They encourage workplace safety and monitor fraud in the system. They have offices in Knoxville, Dyersburg, Clarksville, Murfreesboro, Memphis, Columbia, Cookeville and Kingsport. The main phone number is 800-332-2667.

If you have been injured on the job in Tennessee, you should notify your supervisor immediately. Although you are allowed up to 30 days to inform your employer, to avoid any risk of loss of benefits you should do this as soon as possible. Additionally, this should be in writing and you should keep a copy for yourself. Your employer will then notify their insurance company on a Tennessee Employer’s First Report of Work Injury or Illness (Form C-20). They must do this within 1 day of having knowledge of the issue. The insurance company will then submit a Form C-20 with the Division through Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). The insurer must do this within 14 days of knowledge of the injury.

Your employer should offer you a choice of 3 health care providers and you and your employer must complete an "Agreement Between Employer/Employee Choice of Physician" (Form C-42). If the injury is related to the workers back, the list should provide the name of a chiropractor and have a total of 4 health care providers. These physicians should be in close proximity to the worker's home and the worker has the right to choose the doctor of their choice. Once a doctor has been selected, treatment must be received from that doctor for the duration of the recovery period unless that doctor makes a referral to another physician.

Common Questions About Workmans Compensation in Tennessee


  • Can a worker be fired for submitting a claim? - No, employers are not allowed to fire employees because they have submitted a compensation claim

  • Should an injured worker receive medical bills? - No, health care companies should bill insurance companies directly for eligible workers comp treatment. If the injury has not been accepted under a claim or if the worker sought treatment from an unauthorized doctor in a non-emergency situation the bills may be the responsibility of the worker.

  • What is an injured worker entitled to? - Eligible employees are covered for disability benefits, medical benefits and permanent disability and final settlements

  • What are benefits for surviving dependents? - Up to $7500 are paid for burial expenses. If there are no dependents, $20,000 is paid to the worker's estate

  • Do I need to use sick time for time missed from work? - No, but the first 7 days of disability are not paid unless the employee is disabled for longer than 14 days. Your employer can advise you about the use of sick time during the first 7 days if you fall into this situation

  • How much will I receive in payments? - Generally it will be 66 2/3% of the workers average gross weekly income prior to the incident. This is true as long as the amount is more than the defined minimum payment and less than allowed maximums.

Tennessee provides a Benefit Review Program with representatives to assist workers with questions about the claim process. They may be reached at 800-332-2667. If these representatives cannot clear up the issue, there are specialists available at no cost to employees.



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Workers comp in Tennessee is administered by:

Department of Labor and Workforce Development
1610 University Avenue, 2nd Floor
Knoxville, TN 37921-6741
Telephone: 865-594-5947

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