If you have been injured on the job in Florida, your employer is responsible for paying you workers’ compensation benefits to cover your medical bills and a portion of your lost wages. If your employer’s insurer has denied your claim, you may feel betrayed and worried about your financial future, but this is not the time to despair. The law offers hope and the chance to appeal your denied workers’ comp claim.
A Lakeland workers’ compensation appeals lawyer at Kogan & DiSalvo can help you make the most of this opportunity. We are trusted legal allies for injured workers in Polk County and throughout Florida.
Before you appeal your workers’ comp denial, you have a chance to resolve this matter with your employer outside of the court system. You may wish to obtain legal counsel for these negotiations.
With a skilled workers comp lawyer in Lakeland arguing on your behalf, you may prove successful at this stage, receive the benefits you deserve, and not have to engage in further legal action.
If your employer does not agree to a reasonable settlement offer, however, you can move on to the next stage of the appeals process.
The next step in a workers’ compensation appeal is to file a Petition for Benefits with the Judges of Compensation Claims (OJCC). At this point, a judge will likely require that you try to resolve the dispute with your employer through mediation.
In mediation, a neutral third party works to help disputing parties resolve their conflicts. In a workers’ comp appeal, the mediator will review all of the paperwork concerning your claim and Petition for Benefits, and work with both sides to find common ground.
The questions you must contend with in mediation are: What is fair? When is it in your best interests to accept a mediator’s resolution and when should you reject it and keep fighting?
Equipped with deep knowledge of Florida workers’ compensation laws and the facts involved in your case, a Lakeland workers’ compensation appeals lawyer at our firm can help you answer these difficult questions and move forward.
If mediation fails to deliver the desired result, you may next schedule a hearing with the OJCC. In this hearing, you will have the opportunity to present evidence and testimony that supports your claim.
An experienced workers’ comp attorney knows what type of evidence is likely to sway the opinion of the judge in your favor. This evidence may include:
Within 30 days of this hearing, a judge will issue a final order based on the merits of the evidence presented by both sides of the dispute.
If you do not receive a favorable result at this stage in the appeals process, you still have one chance remaining.
In this final stage of the workers’ comp appeals process, the First District Court of Appeals will review the record of your case and the brief your attorney has filed on your behalf. The more thoroughly and carefully your lawyer has handled all of the preceding steps, the more compelling argument you can present in this final appeal.
As valuable as your worker’s comp benefits are, you want to do everything in your power to obtain them and to make the Florida workers’ comp appeals process work for you.
Mistakes that may make it more difficult to obtain your benefits include:
With a skilled attorney on your side, you can avoid mistakes that would otherwise deprive you of the benefits you need and deserve.
Appealing a denied workers’ compensation claim can be a complex and arduous process, but you don’t have to face it alone. The Lakeland workers’ compensation appeals lawyers at Kogan & DiSalvo are here to handle all aspects of this process on your behalf so you can focus on recovering from your job-related injury. We understand that this is not just a case—it is your life. And we are prepared to help.
Contact us today to arrange a free legal consultation with an experienced member of our team.