Question

My Minnesota workers’ compensation claim was denied. Do I need an attorney?

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Answer

If you were injured at work and your claim for benefits was denied, you’re certainly not alone. Many employees have found themselves in this distressing situation. The good news is that you have options. A denied Minnesota workers’ compensation claim is not the end of the story. You can take steps to continue pursuing the money and medical care you need.

Identifying The Particular Benefits You Were Denied

Typically, the first and best step to take is to consult with a Minnesota workers' compensation attorney. During that consultation, your lawyer will want to determine which benefits are in dispute. You may have been denied medical benefits, wage loss benefits, job rehabilitation benefits or any combination of the above.

The exact type of benefits denied will determine the type of claim that will need to be filed on your behalf. At our firm, we handle all the paperwork and details on behalf of our clients. If you choose us, we will file the claim for you so that you don’t have to worry about it.

Preparing For An Administrative Conference

The next step is to prepare for an administrative conference with a Minnesota workers’ compensation judge or arbitrator. If you were denied wage loss benefits, the conference will usually be scheduled within a few weeks. If you were denied medical or rehabilitation benefits, the conference will typically be scheduled within 30 days.

At the conference itself, both sides will present arguments to support their positions. In other words, the insurance adjuster will try to convince the judge that you don’t deserve benefits. Your attorney, on the other hand, will strive to prove that you do.  

The administrative judge or arbitrator has five days to issue a decision in wage loss cases. In medical or rehabilitation cases, he or she has 30 days to issue a decision.

Taking It One Step Further

If the judge’s decision is not favorable, you still don’t need to give up. You have the option to appeal the decision. However, the deadline is strict. You have only a limited window of time in which to request a formal evidentiary hearing. Again, it is important to speak with an experienced Minnesota workers’ compensation attorney.

Getting A Professional On Your Side

Trying to represent yourself at an administrative conference or evidentiary hearing will nearly always put you at a distinct disadvantage. You will be combating insurance adjusters, medical experts and other parties who have extensive experience and one mission: to deny you the benefits you need. It only makes sense to have a knowledgeable and experienced advocate fighting diligently on your behalf.

At the Law Office of Thomas Mottaz, Jerry Sisk and the lawyers have been representing injured workers across Minnesota since 1989. Feel free to contact us for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation about your particular case and legal options.  

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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