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Can your employer challenge or deny your workers' comp claim?

You may feel that you have been a loyal employee for numerous years. You may have done your best to complete your duties in a timely and effective manner and tried to keep a formal but approachable relationship with your employer. Because of these efforts, you may have believed that you would immediately receive the support you needed after suffering an injury on the job.

Though workers' compensation can help provide qualifying parties with financial assistance after a job-related injury, obtaining benefits is not a guarantee. After applying for benefits, the chance exists that your employer could challenge or deny your claim. You may think this type of outcome unfair, but your employer may try to avoid having your claim approved.

Reasons for employer challenges

Because insurance companies generally pay workers' compensation claims by the terms of an employer's insurance policy, some employers may feel reluctant to use that insurance. It could potentially cause their premium to increase, and cost them more money. As a result, your employer could potentially attempt to use one of the following reasons to deny your workers' comp claim:

  • Lack of witnesses -- If you typically carry out your work duties alone or were alone at the time you suffered your injuries, your employer may question whether the injury was job related. Witnesses can often help bolster claims, and if you have no witnesses, your employer may think you hurt yourself off the job or by doing something you should not have done while on the job.
  • Lack of seriousness -- Your employer may also try to challenge or deny your claim due to believing that your injury lacked severity or because it did not require medical attention. Of course, if you did seek medical attention for your injury, records from your visits could prove useful to your application.
  • Lack of consistency in reports -- Another reason your workers' comp claim could face roadblocks relates to inconsistencies between your medical records and the accident report. If you or others stated that the injury happened in a certain way, but medical information indicates that the injury could not have happened in the way described, your claim may come into question or face denial.

Other reasons for denial also exist, and unfortunately, even if you believe you have a legitimate claim, your employer may still attempt to make your application and approval process more difficult.

Obtaining help

Luckily, you do not have to deal with this type of situation alone or simply accept a denial of your claim. You can take legal steps to ensure the accuracy of your application, deal with an unhelpful employer and appeal a denied claim. Speaking with a New York attorney well versed in workers' compensation laws may prove useful to you.

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