I Filed a Workers' Compensation Claim but I Haven't Heard a Response. What Should I Do?
First, where you filed the claim is the most important factor to consider. If you filed a claim with your employer or with your employer’s insurance company, they are not necessarily required act upon it. To get your claim acted upon, you need to be sure that the claim was filed with the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission. If you filed your claim directly to the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission. Note that it takes a minimum of 10 days, usually longer, for the Commission to process it and assign a file number (referred to as a JCN – jurisdiction claim number).
If you have not received a written confirmation of your claim (Acknowledge Protective Filing), within three weeks or so, you can contact the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission directly.
You can file any related work injury claim paperwork online through Webfile, by fax, or by mailing it.
Once your claim is started, the insurance company (or other decision maker) will investigate. The claims administrator will typically speak to you and your employer and review medical records, accident reports, and other documents. You should cooperate with the insurance company's reasonable requests for information and documents. But if you have any concerns about the investigation, contact a workers’ comp lawyer. For example, it would be a good idea to speak with a lawyer if the insurance company is not returning your phone calls or you believe you are under surveillance.
Within two weeks of filing your claim for benefits, you will receive a letter from the Workers Compensation Commission entitled 20-Day Order. This is one of the Commission’s standard letters.
You do not have to respond to the 20-Day Order. Your employer’s insurance carrier does. You will receive a courtesy copy.
The insurance carrier has 20 days from the date of this letter to respond to the Commission and to state whether it will accept or deny your claim.
The 20-Day Order gives the insurance carrier several options. The first option is to accept the claim as compensable. If the insurance carrier accepts your claim, it must state whether all parties have signed agreement forms, whether it mailed agreement forms to you, or whether it is agreeing to a medical award only. The second option is to state the claim is being investigated. Often this is a delay tactic that increases the financial stress that you – the injured worker – are under. The third option is to deny the claim. If the insurance carrier denies the claim it must file all medical records in its possession relating to the claim. The Virginia Workers Compensation Rules require this.
Attorneys You Can Trust
Our clients come first. We work hard on each and every case for the benefit of our client and his or her family. We have extensive knowledge about Virginia laws regarding injuries at work and workers’ compensation. No case is too difficult for our team. We work efficiently to achieve positive outcomes. Save yourself time by hiring someone who will work on your side in an aggressive manner. You deserve the best, and we are here to help you get your benefits.
Contact us today to schedule your first consultation. At this appointment, we will discuss your specific case and the hurdles we must overcome to get you your benefits. We will navigate the process for you, making it easy to understand. Contact us today!