If you’ve been injured, or become sick at work and you have had your compensation claim rejected, you might be wondering what your options are now.
Laws, regulations and processes in this area can be confusing and, while most employers want to do the right thing, in some cases (either inadvertently or to avoid payouts) they may provide the incorrect information or advice to affected employees.
It can be a tricky situation to navigate, during a difficult time, which is why we’ve written the following guide to give you an idea of what do from here:
Don’t be disheartened
The first thing to keep in mind is that an initial rejection of your claim is almost never the end of the case. In many cases, so long as you want to pursue the situation, it can open up the process of investigation and give you a better chance to present your evidence and have your story heard.
Initial disappointment is understandable – but don’t let this stop you from taking things further.
It’s also important to remember that while there are legitimate reasons for a claim to be rejected, they usually refer to the fact that an injury or condition doesn’t relate to a person’s work.
It’s also important to know that being a casual worker, a cash-in-hand worker or a labour hire worker doesn’t exclude you from workers’ compensation (or possibly even Super benefits).
Disputing a rejected claim
If you believe your claim has been unfairly rejected, your first option is to dispute the finding.
How you should do this and the formal steps included in the dispute resolution process vary from state to state. For this reason we recommend contacting a legal professional at this point, if you haven’t already.
It’s important to keep in mind that in many states, once your claim has been denied, there is a time limit for applying for, or beginning, the dispute process.
What if the initial dispute resolution process doesn’t work?
The initial dispute resolution process will be different depending on which state you’re in.
Throughout a dispute resolution there are several stages of formal resolution procedures, which can differ from state-to-state. Each of these resolution phases sets out to assist both parties reach a resolution – and obtain compensation you are satisfied with.
In some states you may be referred to an independent medical specialist (or panel of specialists) who will review your case and your injury history.
The final dispute resolution stage in most states, if the case isn’t resolved before this point, is a court appearance.
We’re here to help. If you or somebody you love has had your workers’ compensation claim, start the process online or call 1800 444 141.
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