Every worker has the right to pursue their careers with protection against potential injury or illness. To this end, Colorado state law requires all employers to obtain workers’ compensation insurance policies that provide benefits to workers who suffer harm while performing their jobs. Successful claims can result in the payment of all medical bills related to the injury or illness, as well as an employee receiving compensation for a portion of their lost wages.
However, obtaining full benefits is often challenging. Employers may dispute the reason for the injury or even question the extent of your injury. This could result in an insurance company issuing a total denial or offering a benefits package that is insufficient for your needs. An experienced Denver workers’ compensation lawyer could evaluate the reason for a denial, take the steps needed to protect your legal rights, and pursue an appeal. Contact a skilled personal injury attorney at Roberts Markland LLP for an initial consultation.
A workers’ compensation insurance policy is supposed to provide benefits to those who suffer injuries or illnesses while on the job. However, even this simple concept raises many important legal questions that could quickly lead to complications when applying for benefits.
Some of these complications are administrative. For example, Colorado Revised Statute § 8-43-102 says that people who endure injuries while on the job must provide written notice to their employer within four days of the injury taking place. Starting on August 10, 2022, this time limit will extend to ten days. Employees must also file a formal claim for compensation with the Department of Labor and Employment.
An insurance company may also deny a claim because there does not appear to be a link between a person’s injuries and time spent on the job. However, a proactive Denver workers’ compensation attorney is ready to gather evidence from doctors that link an injury or illness to the performance of job duties.
Employers could also dispute the exact reason for an injury. For instance, if an injury was the product of a worker’s horseplay while on the clock or occurred while on company property but after working hours, an insurance company may allege that there is no connection between work activity and an injury. Allowing a seasoned attorney to evaluate the reason for a denial helps workers to better understand their rights under the law.
All people who receive a denial of a workers’ compensation application have the right to appeal this decision. According to state law, insurance companies must issue a decision on claims within 20 days after the worker files an initial claim with the Department. If this decision results in a denial, workers have a limited time to contest the case.
The state offers two paths to dispute a workers’ compensation denial. Employees may request an expedited hearing if they act within 45 days of the receipt of their denial. These hearings will take place no more than 60 days after the filing of this request. All other hearings can move forward if a person files a request no more than two years from the date of denial.
A workers’ comp lawyer in Denver works to represent the best interests of employees during these hearings. This includes submitting the proper applications for sessions, obtaining evidence needed to prove the extent of a medical condition, and making in-person arguments before Administrative Judges to convince them of the right of workers to receive proper benefits.
Workplace injuries and illnesses are common events that affect people regardless of their chosen profession. Colorado state law requires all employers to retain a workers’ compensation insurance policy that can provide payments for medical care and lost wages. Still, many people find that insurance companies deny their claims or offer insufficient benefits packages. In these cases, you always have the ability to pursue an appeal.
A Denver workers’ compensation lawyer is prepared to take the lead in these appeals. They could identify the reason for a denial, obtain information needed to prove your case in court, submit official requests for hearings, and represent your interests during both formal court sessions and informal settlement discussions. Call Roberts Markland LLP now to get started.