Workers’ compensation laws vary by state, but in every jurisdiction, you have a limited number of days to report injury after you are hurt or become ill due to your employment. If you miss the reporting deadline, your claim will most likely be denied by the insurance company. However, in some states, you won’t be penalized for missing a reporting deadline as long as your employer knew about the injury or illness before the deadline. Even in those situations, though, you must file your claim on time. If you enter an appeals process, you must adhere to strict rules to be successful.
What Should I Do if My Claim Is Denied?
If your claim is denied, don’t give up on the process right away. Sometimes the reason for the late reporting is legitimate and more significant than just forgetting to send something in or mailing it too late. Many people think an injury is minor until the symptoms get more serious. They may wait to see a doctor until after the reporting deadline. The appeals judge may find that this is a good reason for late reporting, but you must submit that evidence correctly.
When the insurer denies your claim, you will receive a letter from the insurance company telling you the reason for denial. Review it carefully and see what rights to appeal you have. The process varies by state, but the first level of appeal usually involves appearing in front of an administrative law judge. You get the opportunity to present any evidence you have to explain why the injury was not reported on time.
You may have additional levels of appeal, depending on the laws in your state. It’s best to have competent counsel with you as you through the appeals process, which can be a maze of rules and legal procedures. Workers who try to represent themselves may make mistakes that cost them their benefits simply because they don’t understand the process.
Where Can I Get Help?
If your claim gets denied because the injury wasn’t reported on time, you’re facing an uphill battle to get your benefits. Before filing an appeal, you should seek a professional and experienced work accident lawyer in Newark who understands the laws. Do this as soon as possible so that the lawyer can protect your rights and benefits. Most attorneys won’t charge you unless you win your case, so you have nothing to lose by having someone on your side fighting for you.
Thanks to Rispoli & Borneo, P.C. for their insight into workers compensation and denied injury claims.