Local Representation For Your Workplace Injury Case

If I File a Workers’ Compensation Claim, How Long Will the Process Take?

On Behalf of | Jan 12, 2022 | Firm News

What Benefits are Available? 

Workers’ Compensation insurance covers workers who have been injured or who have become sick on the job. Workers’ Compensation covers the following: 

  • Medical costs
  • Lost wages
  • Permanent Damage to Your Body From Your Work Injury
  • In Some Cases, Workers’ Compensation Will Pay For the Impact on Your Ability to Find Work.  This is called Industrial Disability.

Work injuries that qualify for workers’ compensation coverage can be traumatic injuries at work or work injuries that progress over time from repetitive work duties. 

How Long Can a Workers Comp Claim Settlement Take? 

In Iowa, workers’ compensation laws require that the worker notify the employer following the injury or mishap. 

Iowa Workforce Development sites the following:

  • The employer must have notice or knowledge of an alleged work injury within 90 days of its occurrence. Also, the 90-day period begins to run when the employee knew, or should have known, the injury arose out of and in the course of employment. Lastly, if the employer does not have notice or knowledge of an alleged work injury within 90 days, benefits may be denied.

Also, a case must be brought against the employer with the statute of limitations. 

  • A worker who has not been paid any disability benefits for a work injury must file a petition with the agency within two years of the date of injury or benefits may be denied.
  • Also of note, the two-year statute of limitations does not apply to medical benefits. 
  • If a worker has been paid benefits for a work injury, the worker has three years from the last payment of weekly benefits to receive additional benefits or file an action with DWC. However, if not filed within the three-year period, the benefits may be denied. This statute of limitation does not apply to medical expenses reasonably necessary to treat the injury.

How Long Will My Workers Compensation Case Take?

The answer to this question depends on many factors. 

  • One of the biggest factors is how serious is the injury? If the injury does not require surgery or extensive treatment, workers compensation claims can sometimes be solved in months or within a year.  However, if someone needs surgery or extensive treatment for their work injury, resolution can often take more than a year. 
  • Did the employer accept the work injury and direct you to medical care?  If the injury is accepted by the employer and you are directed to medical care in a timely manner, this can help move your case more quickly.  If your employer disputes your work injury or delays getting you medical treatment, this will usually prolong your case. 
  • Did you report your injury quickly? If the injury is reported to your employer quickly, there is less time lost for the insurance company to investigate your claim and make sure it is valid. 

What is the settlement cycle?

It is important not to settle your workers compensation case too soon.  With certain types of settlements, you will cut off your right to benefits forever.  It is important to make sure your medical treatment has concluded and be confident you won’t need additional medical treatment in the future. 

Once a settlement has been reached, settlement documents are prepared by the attorney for the insurance company. They need to be signed and submitted to the workers compensation agency for approval.  Once they are approved, the insurance company will order the check.  This process usually takes 30-45 days after settlement. 

How could a Workers Comp Settlement attorney help you?

Hiring an attorney is key to protecting your rights. Employers always have attorneys advising them on your case. You should have the same protection.  You need to make sure that the insurance company is paying attention to your claim and telling you the truth about the law. Our law firm will make sure you know your rights and if we work together on your case will work to get you the medical and money benefits you deserve for your claim.. Give us a call today at Platt Law Firm, P.C. at 515-346-6659 for a FREE consultation!