Michigan workers compensation attorney explains the informal procedure for small claims of less than $2,000.00.
We are frequently contacted by individuals who have suffered minor injuries at work and have some unpaid medical bills or a few weeks of wage loss. These individuals have usually recovered from their injuries and have returned to work. For whatever reason, the employer or the insurance company does not want to pay even a small amount under workers compensation.
Due to the limited amount involved, it is difficult to find a workers compensation attorney who will take the case. This is because workers compensation cases are handled on contingency and the attorney fee is based upon how much is recovered.
There is a small claims procedure for workers compensation in Michigan
A workers compensation magistrate will hear and decide your small claim. You are allowed to represent yourself but you cannot have an attorney. Medical records can be used as evidence. A record of the hearing will not be kept and the magistrate’s ruling is not appealable. Either party can request that the matter be removed from the small claims division and set for a formal hearing.
You can request a referral to the small claims division under the following circumstances:
(1) $2,000.00 or less, concerning a definite period of time, and you have returned to work.
(2) $2,000.00 or less and is for medical benefits only.
(3) $2,000.00 or less, as determined by the Agency, with regard to any dispute or controversy.
Contact the Michigan Workers’ Compensation Agency to start a small claim.
The small claims procedure is rarely used in Michigan
You should always talk to an experienced workers compensation attorney before filing any claim. It is possible that you could end up trading substantial workers compensation benefits for a small sum.
You must also consider the consequences of hauling your employer into court while you are still an employee. You may be able to have medical bills paid by your own health insurance company because workers compensation has disputed your claim. A good workers compensation attorney can evaluate your specific situation and help you make the correct choice.
To speak with one of our workers comp attorneys, call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation. There is no fee unless workers compensation benefits are recovered for you.
– Alex Berman is the founder of the law firm. Hes been representing injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Alex has helped countless people obtain workers compensation benefits and never charges a fee to evaluate a case.
– Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by umjanedoan.