What are my options if my Michigan workers compensation benefits have been terminated?
How a work comp lawyer can protect you from termination of benefits or a claim denial
Many employers and insurance companies put their profits ahead of people, and therefore injured workers get sorely mistreated. The information below will help you understand your options in the event your work comp benefits are terminated — or if your claim is denied.
Call us at (855) 221-COMP for help from one of our workmans comp lawyers today. You can also fill out our free consultation form. We can help protect your rights to work comp benefits, so you can continue recovering.
- What can I do if my work comp benefits are terminated?
- Why is my work comp claim being questioned?
- What happens if I challenge the denial of my claim?
- Who will cover my work comp medical treatment?
- Can I get cash assistance while my case is pending?
Q. What happens if my work comp benefits are terminated?
A. Understand that many employers and insurance companies only care about their profits and not about their workers. This means that your claim will most likely be denied — and if you are receiving benefits, they will be terminated — regardless of what happened at work.
You always have the option of challenging a bad decision by filing an Application for Mediation or Hearing with the Michigan Workers Compensation Agency.
Q. Why is my work comp claim being questioned?
A. Most workers compensation claims are disputed, or benefits terminated, because of a mischaracterization of your medical condition. Many times this is intentional, and happens when an insurance company uses a paid doctor to find that you are “fully recovered” or that your medical condition is “not work-related.” It does not matter how you hurt yourself or if you had any pain before the work injury. It does not even matter what your own doctor says.
Insurance companies will often disregard the facts surrounding your injury if they see arthritis or some preexisting injury. It is important to understand that your medical conditions can be made significantly worse by an injury and this would be compensable under Michigan workers compensation law.
If you could work before an injury but cannot now, this is good evidence that your condition has been made worse. Another important factor to consider is whether you needed medical treatment for your condition until after your work injury.
Q. What happens if I challenge the denial of my claim?
A. You should always challenge a bad decision that denies you workers compensation benefits. An experienced workmans comp lawyer can help you through this process, and do everything for you.
Your workers compensation case will be heard by a magistrate. You will have the opportunity to present medical and vocational evidence to prove that you are disabled. The magistrate will make a determination as to the facts and law. You, the injured worker, always have the burden of proof.
Unfortunately, a workers compensation case can take months or even years to resolve.
Here’s more information on what to expect throughout a Michigan work comp lawsuit.
Q. Who will cover my work comp medical treatment?
A. Your immediate concern should be to get medical treatment and some income to support your family. You may have other options to receive medical treatment and cash assistance while your workers compensation case is pending.
You can use your own health insurance to get medical treatment. Many health insurance companies will agree to pay disputed medical bills provided that you sign a reimbursement agreement and pay them back out of the proceeds of your workers compensation case. This is important because you need medical evidence to win your workers compensation case at trial. An experienced workmans comp lawyer will also be able to negotiate any lien from the health insurance company and put more money in your pocket.
You may also be entitled to receive medical treatment through Medicaid or Medicare. It is important to speak with a workmans comp lawyer before applying for these health benefits, because of the significant responsibilities you may have when resolving your workers compensation case. You could end up paying your entire workers compensation recovery back to the government if your case is not handled properly.
Here’s more information on who can cover your medical care while your work comp case is pending.
Q. Can I get cash assistance while my case is pending?
A. Cash assistance may also be available if workers compensation is disputing your claim. Some employers offer disability plans known as short-term disability (STD), long-term disability (LTD), sickness and accident benefits (S&A and extended disability benefits (EDB).
These benefit plans are separate and distinct from workers compensation. Each disability plan has its own rules, and many times you will have to pay the plan back if workers compensation benefits are later received. An experienced workmans comp lawyer can help you negotiate any payback — and maximize the amount of your total recovery.
Need help after termination of your benefits or a claim denial?
Call us at (855) 221-COMP, or fill out our free contact form. There is no fee or obligation.
Our work comp lawyers will take all the time you need to answer your questions. And we can make sure you receive your workmans comp benefits, even if your claim is denied or your benefits have been terminated.