Although the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Board within the Department of Labor & Industry is responsible for overseeing workers’ comp cases in the Commonwealth, the payment you receive for a successful claim comes from the insurance company that provides your employer with workers’ compensation insurance. Unfortunately, like any other type of insurance provider, workers’ comp insurers will jump at the chance to deny payments to deserving claimants on any number of technical grounds.
Because of this, it is often crucial to have skilled legal representation on your side when meeting with insurance companies during a Levittown workers’ compensation claim. A knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer could ensure you are not taken advantage of and help you progress through any interactions you have with these companies as smoothly and productively as possible.
Rather than relying solely on litigation during a contested workers’ comp claim, workers’ compensation judges often order insurance companies and claimants to enter into private settlement negotiations as a means of alternative dispute resolution. Often, these negotiations have third-party mediators present who will not favor either party and attempt to help both sides agree on a fair settlement.
While mediation sessions are mandatory under current Pennsylvania law, they are not binding, which means neither party is legally required to agree to a settlement during these conferences. Furthermore, what happens in a meeting with an insurance company representative during a Levittown workers’ compensation claim is completely confidential, even from the workers’ comp judge who ordered that meeting to occur.
Most importantly, though, the mediation session is not a claimant’s only opportunity to settle their case, so they should not feel pressured to accept an unsatisfactory offer for fear of ultimately ending up with nothing. Having a workers’ comp attorney present at this and all other meetings with insurance providers is the best way to ensure they are productive and that they do not end with an unfavorable outcome for an injured worker.
Both during formal meetings and informal communications, workers’ compensation insurance companies have a laundry list of strategies they use to lead injured Levittown workers towards accepting less than their claim is really worth. These include pressuring claimants to give recorded statements that they are not legally required to provide, delaying payments without cause, sending out misleading or incomplete documents, and even hiring private investigators to keep tabs on a claimant and check whether they are really disabled.
No matter how much an individual claimant reads up on typical insurance provider tactics, they are unlikely to have much luck combatting them without guidance from a seasoned legal professional. Even more so than protecting a claimant’s best interests during official negotiations, help from a workers’ comp lawyer can be essential to ensuring insurance reps do not act in unlawful ways while trying to scheme their way into a positive outcome for their employers.
Even if you have a strong claim for benefits following a workplace accident, you may have trouble getting those benefits if you attempt to negotiate with your employer’s workers’ comp insurer alone. These companies have years of experience pushing injured workers towards unfair settlements, and you should not expect them to be any easier to deal with in your case.
Meeting with insurance companies during a Levittown workers’ compensation claim does not have to be intimidating or unproductive if you have help from a workers’ compensation lawyer. Get started today.