My Workers' Comp Claim Was Denied. What Now?
Believe it or not, it’s not uncommon for workers’ comp insurance companies to deny a legitimate claim. After all, these businesses make money by collecting premiums, not distributing compensation. Insurance companies will use any excuse to keep from covering your injury. However, you do have another course of action—filing an appeal.
In the state of Chicago, you have a right to appeal the company’s denial of your claim. In order to do so, you must show evidence countering the reasons for the denial. The process can be quite complicated, which is why you need the assistance of an excellent Chicago workers’ compensation attorney. A good lawyer will not only know what papers to file and where to send them, but they will know the deadlines for each one. Every state has a statute of limitations that puts a restriction on the amount of time you have to file a workers’ comp claim; however, there are also deadlines for the appeals process.
In order to begin, you must submit an application for adjustment of claim. This must be submitted with proof that the employer has been served with a copy of the application. Then, you must request a hearing with the arbitrator working with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission. This hearing is your opportunity to present evidence that the denial was a mistake. If you have sufficient evidence, the next step is requesting a trial. The arbitrator will seek to resolve the dispute during the trial and will issue his or her decision within 60 days of its conclusion. Having a good attorney on your side will allow you to present your case in an orderly and well-argued way. Lawyers have extensive training in presenting and explaining evidence in a court of law, including the legal terminology necessary to present a well-argued case.
If your claim is still denied, you can appeal the arbitrator’s decision with a Petition for Review with the Workers’ Compensation Commission within 30 days. A panel of 3 commissioners will then review the petition and make a decision within 60 days regarding your case. Another denial can be appealed via the Circuit Court, Appellate Court, or even the Supreme Court of Illinois.
Each step will become progressively harder and will require the support of an experienced legal counselor. Make sure you are represented by the best. Our attorneys have handled more than 7,500 claims successfully for injured workers all over the state. Trust us to advocate for you. Contact us at (312) 487-2513 or fill out our online form to schedule a free case consultation. We look forward to fighting for your rights.