In a nutshell, Iowa workers’ compensation law provides injured workers 3 types of benefits: (1) medical care; (2) weekly benefits for work time missed due to the injury; and (3) compensation for permanent disability. Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier will work hard to deny you these rights to save money. They do this by ignoring you, selecting doctors to treat you that will follow their orders, and making life difficult for you at work so that you will quit.
Receiving appropriate medical care following a work injury is often difficult because the insurance company is more interested in how much it costs them than whether you get better. If you are unhappy with your care we will review your medical records and, if necessary and appropriate, obtain a hearing with a judge to obtain more appropriate care. In fact, we can often get you a hearing within 10 days on medical issues.
If you are off work because of your injury you are entitled to weekly benefits. Insurance companies frequently deny these benefits for frivolous reasons, fail to issue weekly checks on a timely basis, and attempt to return you to work before you are medically ready. We will ensure that the insurance company knows it will be penalized by the workers’ compensation carrier if it denies benefits on an erroneous basis or fails to pay them in a timely fashion.
Many workers continue to have symptoms and resulting disability even after their treatment is completed. The insurance carrier will very likely obtain a report from an occupational doctor stating that you have no permanent impairment or disability. Fortunately, Iowa law provides you with the right to obtain a disability evaluation from a physician of your choice at the insurance company’s expense. We are prepared to guide you through this process and do everything necessary to make sure you receive a fair and unbiased evaluation.
Insurance carriers are very rarely willing to pay a fair settlement without litigation. When the time comes and if you direct us to do so, we will file your case with the Iowa Workers’ Compensation Commissioner and proceed through the litigation process. If the insurance carrier refuses to offer a fair settlement, we will go to trial on your case. At Fulton, Martin & Andres, P.C. we will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive everything you are entitled to.
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