Aside from a denied claim for benefits, there are a lot of ways in which a dispute over workers’ compensation benefits can emerge between an injured worker in the Twin Cities area and the employer or the employer’s insurance company.
For instance, the employer may, after giving a legally required warning, terminate a worker’s ongoing coverage for lost wages. In other cases, there may be an issue with respect to how much in weekly wages a worker is owed in the first place.
No matter what the cause of the issue is, it is a good idea for a Minnesota worker to understand a little bit about how disputes over workers’ compensation get resolved. For one, the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings, which oversees much of this process, has options in place for alternative dispute resolution. For instance, a settlement conference or mediation may take place before a dispute goes too far.
If the sides involved cannot get their issue worked out, then a Compensation Judge, an expert in Minnesota’s workers’ compensation system, will hear the case much like any other judge would hear a matter in the local court.
Either side will have the option of appealing this judge’s decision by filing the proper paperwork up to 30 days after the judge’s decision gets served on them. This deadline is strict, as are the technical requirements for appealing. Appeals are heard by the Workers’ Compensation Court of Appeals, who will review the Compensation Judge’s decision and decide whether to uphold it, overturn it, or change it or even send it back to the Compensation Judge.
This is a general overview of how one can appeal a workers’ compensation decision that is unfavorable. However, specific questions should be directed to an experienced Minnesota workers’ compensation attorney.