Ideally, every workers’ compensation claim would end up with a quick, fair settlement that seems reasonable to both sides — but it doesn’t always work out that way. Injured workers often find it difficult to get the treatment that they need for their injuries. They also usually find out that their employer (or their employer’s insurance company) will try to deny or devalue their claim any way possible.

If your workers’ comp claim was denied, here’s what you should probably do next:

  1. Carefully determine why your claim was denied. Your notice should spell out the issue. Many times, injured employees find out that they’re being denied benefits because their employer either disputes the timing of their injury (claiming that it wasn’t work-related) or the nature of their injury (claiming that it isn’t as serious as you say).
  2. Gather up documentation that supports your case. If, for example, your employer claims you didn’t notify them of your injury when it happened or shortly afterward, you want to make sure that you get a hard copy of your email to your supervisor following the accident ready to show your attorney.
  3. Try to resolve the dispute informally. Sometimes, denials are nothing more complicated than a paperwork snarl. If your attorney thinks that may be the case, you may resolve the issue without a hearing.
  4. Ask for a hearing. In most cases, you’ll need to work with an experienced advocate to best navigate the workers’ compensation appeals process and get a good result.

Don’t let a workers’ compensation denial get in the way of your recovery. Talk to an experienced attorney about how to best proceed with your claim.