If you just learned that the insurance company has denied your workers’ compensation claim, you may not know what to do next. This article explains your next steps after claim rejection so that you know how to move forward.
An insurer has fourteen days to decide whether to deny your claim after receiving the First Report of Injury from your employer. If the insurer decides to deny responsibility to pay your claim, it will issue a Notice of Primary Liability Determination document that explains the reasons for the denial.
Sometimes, insurance companies decide to begin paying for claims while they conduct an investigation. In that situation, an insurer would issue a Notice of Primary Liability Determination accepting liability. If the investigation leads them to conclude that they should not accept liability, they will retract the previous acceptance and issue a denial. Sometimes, insurance companies wait until after you have received an independent medical examination and received payment for many medical bills to deny liability.
After the insurer issues the Notice of Primary Liability Determination, you have three years to file an Employee’s Claim Petition fighting the denial. The Claim Petition describes the nature of your injury and the amounts of various benefits you feel you should receive (disability, medical, and rehabilitation). You must attach a doctor’s report supporting your claimed injury. The Claim Petition should be filed by your lawyer with the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, Workers’ Compensation Division, and served on the employer, the insurer, and anyone else involved in the claim.
After your Claim Petition has been filed and accepted, the employer and insurer must respond to the petition. Usually the case is scheduled for a settlement conference to try to resolve the dispute. Meanwhile, the parties exchange information and documents. Often the injured workers’ deposition is taken and he or she receives an independent medical examination. If the parties do not settle the case, the assigned judge will set the case for hearing. Future blogs will discuss the details of these next steps.
Depending on your case, filing a claim petition may not be the best option. If the insurer has paid some benefits, you may instead want to file a request for rehabilitation or medical request with the Department of Labor and Industry. Consult a lawyer to learn more. Further, please note that some unions have specific procedures for resolving disputes about liability for a workers’ compensation claim. You may need to follow these procedures first before you can file a claim petition. Consult your union rules or collective bargaining agreement and contact a lawyer for further information.
Was your workers’ compensation claim denied? Joe Osterbauer, Esq. and the Osterbauer Law Firm stand up for injured Minnesota workers’ rights. Joe’s 27 years of workers’ compensation experience and his team’s speedy service combine to get clients the results they need. To schedule a free consultation, visit Osterbauer Law Firm online or call Joe’s office at (612) 334-3434.