Workers’ Compensation Claims Process in Minnesota: An Overview
An injury at work is not only upsetting but also difficult to navigate legally.
If you are injured on the job, you might be notified that you are eligible for workers’ compensation. However, because of all the documentation, medical examinations, consults with attorneys, and paperwork, it can be difficult to know how to go about things to get properly compensated. Below, we will take a brief look at the steps to expect during the process so that you are better prepared.
Filing A First Report of Injury
It is important to understand that the claims process does not start when you get injured, it starts when the insurance company receives notice of a claim. You should first report your injuries to your employer or boss. Once this is done, you should ask them to fill out a “First Report of Injury” form.
If your boss or employer does not want to file this report, you can file it yourself or talk to an attorney to get it filed on your behalf. If the report is filed and the insurance company tries to get in touch with you, it is always a good idea to talk to a lawyer instead of the insurance company directly. Talking to Expert Compensation Lawyers will also eliminate the possibility of using words or phrases that can hurt your claim to describe the accident or circumstances surrounding it.
Scheduling Of The Deposition
Your deposition is an important step in this whole process. This is where the insurer asks you about your claims and injuries. It is usually treated as a recorded statement or truthful statement that can be used against you in the claims process. This is why it is so important to have an attorney in the room with you during the deposition. Note that a court reporter and an attorney for either your employer or their insurance company will be available at these depositions.
Here, your attorney will discuss with you the settlement amount you can expect or one that the other party has agreed to. From here, you can receive subsequent offers if you decide to counter the offers put on the table. At this stage, you will discuss reasonable compensation with your lawyer so that you do not drag this out further should the other party offer a similar amount or one close to it. If a settlement is reached, medical expenses are paid for first, all the parties involved sign the settlement, a judge hands out an award letter, and the payment is sent to your lawyer.
If there is no agreement of settlement reached, the case will proceed to a hearing. Here, you will be required to appear before a judge. You will be required to explain your injuries as well as why you are entitled to a settlement. A lawyer is also important in this stage as they can ask questions that help explain the injuries and your position better. Once the hearing is over, the judge will provide a decision, which will lead to an amount being sent or an appeal being filed.
Although the above is a simplified overlook of the workers’ compensation claims process in Minnesota, it is still a great place to start to know what to expect. The most important thing is to always consult with a lawyer to understand your case because every case is different.