It’s true that when workers are hurt on the job, South Carolina law often allows them to receive workers’ compensation. These benefits can cover the cost of medical expenses, and in some cases, missed income when the injury prevents someone from working. Unfortunately, simply applying for workers’ compensation benefits doesn’t mean you’ll automatically receive them. Thousands of workers’ compensation claims are denied every year.
When they are, workers often give up and think there’s nothing they can do. That’s not true, though. There are many steps workers can take after being denied workers’ compensation claims. Their best bet is to hire a Rock Hill workers’ compensation attorney who can help them through the appeal stage.
Reasons for Workers Comp Denial
Unfortunately, there are many reasons the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission may deny your claim. These include:
- Your injury did not happen at work
- You did not notify your employer of the injury soon enough
- You were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of injury
- You did not see an approved medical provider
- You did not receive medical treatment at all
- Your application was not filed on time
- Your injury is a result of a pre-existing condition
- Your employer disputes your claim
These are just a few reasons the Commission often denies claims. Many of these denials can be fought through an appeal.
The Workers Comp Appeals Process
After being denied workers’ compensation, the first step is to request a hearing. A hearing allows you, your employer, and your employer’s representative to discuss the disputes pertaining to the claim. You can fill out a request for a hearing online, or contact the commissioner’s judicial department and ask for a form directly.
During the hearing, you can argue your case for receiving workers’ compensation benefits. Your employer can also raise arguments against those claims. At the end of the hearing, you’ll receive a decision. If your application is still denied, you can then file a request for a full Commission review.
After the Commission reviews your application, they will then make a decision. If your claim is still denied, you will then have to file a lawsuit and take the matter to court. The case can first go to the South Carolina Court of Appeals, and if it’s still unsuccessful, you can then take it to the South Carolina Supreme Court.
Speak to a Lancaster Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Help with Your Appeal
Being denied workers’ compensation doesn’t automatically mean you’ll never receive benefits. It only means that it may take a little longer before you get the compensation you need. In order to give your appeal the best chance of success, you need to speak to a Lancaster workers compensation lawyer.
If you’ve been injured at work and need help with your workers’ compensation claim, call the Elrod Pope Law Firm at (803) 599-3080. This is a lengthy and complex process, and our attorneys know how to guide you through it. Call today or fill out our online form for your free consultation and we can begin discussing your case.
Thomas E. Pope is a Personal Injury, Wrongful Death, and Medical Malpractice Attorney who practices in Rock Hill, Lake Wylie, and Lancaster, SC. He graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 31 years now. Thomas E. Pope believes in protecting the injured. Learn more about his experience here.