You’ve been injured on the job. Maybe you were hurt on a construction site or you slipped on a wet floor at the hospital. Whatever happened, you reported the incident to your manager right away, you saw a doctor who had been pre-approved by your employer, and you kept records of all of your bills and treatment. You also followed the doctor’s advice, which included taking time off from work to focus on your recovery.
This sounds like a classic case where you should be entitled to receive workers’ compensation. In New Jersey, the “no-fault” nature of workers’ compensation means that you do not need to prove any negligence or misconduct on the part of your employer in order to receive benefits for your medical bills and lost wages. As long as your employer is required to participate in workers’ compensation (and most New Jersey employers are), you should have an open-and-shut case for receiving the benefits you deserve.
But what if your employer won’t cooperate?
Common Issues in Workers’ Compensation Claims
Whether your employer pays for workers’ compensation insurance or is self-insured for employee claims (meaning that it sets aside funds to cover the costs of employees’ injuries), it may choose to fight your claim for several different reasons. If your employer believes it has a valid defense (and in some cases, even if it doesn’t), you may face an uphill battle in claiming benefits for your work injury.
Another common issue is that employers often mishandle and mismanage their employees’ claims. Especially in the initial stages of a claim, employees need the cooperation of their employers. Delays and mistakes in processing workers’ compensation claims can put employees at a disadvantage – and put their health at risk as well.
Fighting Back When Your Employer Won’t Pay Workers’ Compensation
Fortunately, New Jersey law requires employers to cooperate, and if they don’t, injured employees can take legal action to enforce their rights. If you get the sense that your employer is trying to cause problems for your claim – or if they simply refuse to give you what you need – you should seek legal help as soon as possible. In many cases, the sooner you get an attorney involved, the sooner you will be able to receive the benefits you deserve.
What if My Employer Has Denied My Claim?
If your employer has already denied your claim, you still have options. In New Jersey, there is a process for challenging workers’ compensation denials, as well as a series of appeals you can make before your case is truly over. However, there are strict time limits for filing appeals, and fighting for workers’ comp benefits before a Judge of Compensation or an appeals court requires years of legal experience. So, to protect your rights, you should speak with an attorney right away.
Discuss Your NJ Workers’ Compensation Denial with an Experienced Attorney
To learn more about your rights if your employer won’t pay you benefits, we invite you to schedule a free, confidential consultation. We have four office locations throughout New Jersey, and can help you take swift action to protect your legal rights. Call (888) 675-7607 or send us an email to speak with an attorney today.