Complaints about delayed workers’ compensation checks are common across the United States. Frequently, workers grapple with the challenge of having to wait for an extended period before receiving their workers’ compensation check.
However, such a delay may arise due to multiple reasons. For instance, the compensation check may have been sent to a wrong address or lost in the mail. The insurer may be waiting for a doctor’s note confirming your need to miss work. Or the insurance company may not be in a hurry to process the check.
That said, it’s always essential to understand some of the critical steps you should take in the event of such a delay.
Here’s what you should know about how to deal with a delayed workers’ compensation check.
When Are You Expected to Receive Your Workers’ Compensation Check?
Typically, your workers’ compensation check should show up within 14 to 21 days after reporting your injury to your employer. After you receive your first check, then it follows that your check should come weekly or bi-weekly depending on how you were normally paid. If you are working at a wage loss, work comp checks are not issued until the workers compensation insurer gets a copy of your pay stub. So, do not delay in providing your pay stub and do not assume your employer is sending pay stubs to the insurer.
Workers’ compensation payments may stop once if the insurer determines you are no longer qualified to receive workers’ compensation. For instance, if the insurance provider suspects fraud, they may stop making payments. Also, this may be the case if it is established that you are ready to go back to work. In either case, you should contact a lawyer to make sure it is proper for your benefits to stop. There are important time limits to challenge the stoppage of your benefits, so do not delay seeking advice.
What Should You do When Your Workers Compensation Check Is Delayed?
If you notice that your check is delayed, it is essential to take critical steps to determine the cause of the delay. Contacting the insurance company and seeking further information from the insurance adjuster or representative is a first step. If email is an option, send and email to help document your contact.
If the adjuster tells you that it was mailed, then chances are that it is delayed or got lost in the mail. Waiting a few more days may be warranted, or you could ask the adjuster to reissue the check. Also, you need to inform the insurer of any change in your address. In Minnesota, you can ask for your checks to be direct deposited. This should help prevent future checks from being delayed by the mail system.
If your efforts to prevent future delays are futile, consider talking to a workers’ compensation attorney. Essentially, an attorney levels the playing field and will help address the issues in accordance with the law. In some cases, penalties are payable.
How Can a Workers Compensation Attorney help?
Insurance companies don’t always have your interest at heart. Often, they are out to ensure that they maximize their profits by reducing the amount of compensation they pay accident victims. Similarly, the insurance company may attempt to avoid making full payments by coming up with an excuse.
That said, hiring an attorney is crucial because you will be one step ahead towards ensuring that the insurance company follows the rules.
Essentially, an attorney will confront the insurance company and demand valid explanations concerning the delay or any other issues. Also, the attorney’s skills and knowledge of Minnesota’s workers’ compensation laws will ensure that the insurance company adheres to the law.
Are there Penalties Imposed For Late Workers Compensation Checks
Insurers are often required to pay a penalty for delayed workers’ compensation checks. Often, a specific percentage of the total late payment is imposed, if the check isn’t released within seven days after the payment is due.
Need help? Contact an Attorney
If you are experiencing issues with your check, an attorney can likely help. Contact an attorney to assist you in obtaining the compensation you deserve in a timely manner.