Bellenot & Boufford, LLC
Workers’ Compensation Overview and Process
According to the current laws of Connecticut, an injury that someone suffers during and in the course of employment is compensable and eligible for a workers’ compensation claim. If you are not able to work for three or more days, you qualify for workers’ compensation. If you are injured in an on-the-job car accident, or other work injury involving someone other than another employee or your employer, you may be eligible to file a third-party claim as well as a claim for the workers’ comp injury.
Take Quick Action Following a Workplace Accident
In most cases, as an injured worker, you only have one year from the date the injury occurred to file a claim for benefits. It is important to act quickly to preserve your claim by reporting your injury to your supervisor or manager immediately and seeking medical attention. Additionally, there are forms that must be filled-out and processed correctly.
If your case is accepted, the insurance company is supposed to issue a voluntary agreement that includes all the relevant details of your case. They must pay you your out of work benefits and provide you with reasonable and necessary medical treatment.
If the insurance company denies your claim, you should receive a form stating the denial and then you can request a hearing for the denied claim. The Workers’ Compensation Commission has its own rules and differs from Superior Court. Cases move more quickly and a hearing can usually be scheduled within four to six weeks after starting your claim.
The first couple of hearings will be more informal where you sit down with a workers’ compensation commissioner and the insurance company representative or their counsel. The commissioner can provide recommendations, but cannot normally issue a binding order. The parties can accept or contest the recommendations and request a more formal hearing, which is the equivalent of a trial, if necessary. Following the formal hearing, the commissioner will then issue an order that the parties must accept or appeal. Appeals first go through the Commission Review Board (CRB) and then to the appellate court.
Help Ensure That Your Rights Remain Protected
Many people feel that they can handle a workers’ compensation claim by themselves, but it is important to remember that this is still a legal process and you can easily forfeit rights and benefits if you do not have all of the necessary information and act properly.
Our attorneys can help ensure that you receive proper treatment for your injuries. It is important to remind the doctor that this is a workers’ compensation claim every time you see him or her. In many cases, the insurance company will assign a nurse case manager who will contact you about your claim. You do not have to speak with them. You should follow all instructions from your treating physician and provide regular updates to your employer, but you should exercise caution because everything you say can be used against you if your employer tries to deny your claim.
It is important to remember that workers’ compensation is not a full recovery system. It is more of a safety net. Your average weekly earnings for the year before you were injured, along with your tax filing status, will be used to calculate the weekly benefits you are entitled to receive. The type and amount of benefits you receive are dependent upon your medical status and vary throughout the duration of your case. The attorneys at Bellenot & Boufford constantly monitor your medical and benefit status to make sure you are receiving all treatment and compensation you are entitled to.
The Newtown lawyers at Bellenot & Boufford, LLC, have over 50 years of combined experience helping clients navigate the workers’ compensation process successfully in Fairfield County, New Haven County and the surrounding areas of Connecticut. Our experience can help you find peace of mind.
Free and Meaningful Phone Consultations
When you contact our law firm for a free initial phone consultation, you will discuss your workers’ compensation case with an experienced lawyer right away. We will give you the meaningful information you need to decide how you want to proceed with your case. We want to give you peace of mind from the very start. Call 203-304-9050 (877-286-3414 toll free) or contact us to schedule your free initial phone consultation.