Mason City Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Representing Injured Employees in Mason City and Throughout Iowa
When you are hurt on the job, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Not everyone realizes there are strict reporting requirements and time limits that could jeopardize your ability to get compensation if you do not act quickly.
At the Pothitakis Law Firm, we have been helping injured Iowan workers understand and enforce their rights for over 20 years. We dedicate ourselves to providing the comprehensive guidance and assistance our clients need to successfully collect compensation for lost wages, medical treatment, and disability. Our Mason City workers’ compensation lawyer recognizes what is at stake in your case and will be there to support you from beginning to end, no matter the complexity of your situation. If your claim is denied for any reason, we will help you fight the insurance company and do everything we can to deliver the favorable result you deserve.
You pay no legal fees unless we win, so call (319) 209-9197 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation today. Se habla español.
What Deadlines Apply to Workers’ Compensation Claims?
When you suffer any kind of injury at work or because of your job, you must act quickly if you want to protect your right to seek workers’ compensation benefits. Iowan workers must meet certain deadlines at multiple stages of the process.
You have only 90 days to report a job-related injury to your employer. Your claim will almost certainly be denied if you wait too long to report, which is why you should always inform your employer in writing as soon as possible.
When the 90-day countdown starts depends on how your injuries happened:
- If you were hurt in an on-the-clock accident, you have 90 days from the date of the incident
- If you sustained a repetitive strain injury over time, you have 90 days from the date you discovered or should have reasonably discovered the injury could be job-related
- If you become sick with an occupational illness, you have 90 days from the date you discovered or should have reasonably discovered that the illness may be job-related
When in doubt, assume you should notify your employer as soon as possible. There is no advantage to waiting, and the sooner you start the process, the sooner you can potentially get compensation.
Additional deadlines apply if any portion of your workers’ compensation claim is denied:
- If you have received no benefits, you have two years from the date you discovered your job-related injury to initiate the appeals process
- If you have received any benefits, you have three years from the last day of payment to file an appeal
Missing any of these deadlines could prevent you from accessing benefits that are otherwise available to you under Iowa’s workers’ compensation laws. When you hire our Mason City workers’ compensation attorney, we will ensure all reports and any necessary appeals are filed on time.
The timeline for a workers’ compensation case will depend on how quickly you report your injury and whether your employer’s insurance company accepts or denies your claim. Again, while you have up to 90 days to notify your employer of a job-related injury, it behooves you to tell them sooner rather than later.
Once your employer learns about your injury, they have to file a report with their insurance company and the Iowa Division of Workers’ Compensation within four days. An insurance adjuster will evaluate your claim and typically make an initial decision relatively quickly. If they approve your claim, you can start receiving compensation for medical treatment immediately, but keep in mind your employer gets to choose which providers you see. Disability payments can begin 11 days after you became disabled.
If any portion of your claim is denied, you are looking at a longer wait before you will start receiving all of the benefits you deserve. In some cases, an insurer may only partially approve your claim. You will start receiving the approved benefits but will need to take further action if you want the denied benefits. Again, you have up to two years from the date you discovered your injury to appeal if you have not received any benefits or three years from the date of your final payment if you have received some benefits. The sooner you appeal, the sooner your case can be resolved.
If you do need to appeal, you should expect to wait at least a year before an administrative hearing can be scheduled and conducted. Our Mason City workers’ compensation lawyer understands a delay of this extent can represent a significant hardship to you and your family, which is why we make every effort to directly negotiate with the insurance company in the hopes of securing a faster resolution. We will not rest until you get fair compensation.
Do not wait to get professional assistance with your claim. Call (319) 209-9197 or contact us online to discuss your circumstances with our team at the Pothitakis Law Firm.
$1 Million Workers Slip and Fall
After hearing, the Deputy Workers’ Compensation Commissioner entered an award fully in favor of the Claimant finding him permanently and totally disabled. The Decision resulted in an award with the present value of in excess of $1 million. In addition, the Defendants were ordered to pay the Claimant’s medical expenses for the remainder of his life.
$450,000 Partial Commutation
In 2013, our client was a truck driver who was fatally injured in a tragic auto accident. He was married at the time and as a result his wife was entitled to Workers’ Compensation benefits. Those benefits would end upon her death or shortly after she were to remarry. The surviving spouse was finding it difficult to live on the weekly Workers’ Compensation benefits and for other reasons wanted to have the money paid in a lump sum.
Workers’ Comp Appeal Results in Settlement
Pothitakis Law Firm pursued this claim for in excess of three and a half years. Mr. Pothitakis conferenced with the claimant’s doctors and obtained reports over those years to put the claimant in the best position to obtain a favorable result at hearing. When the initial decision was inappropriate, Pothitakis Law Firm filed an appeal and was successful on that appeal.