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Settlement FAQ

How Do You Know when You Should Settle a Workers Compensation Case?

When it comes to knowing when to settle an Illinois Work Comp case, an attorney will have done due diligence to determine what similar cases have settled for. They should know what other similarly situated workers have been awarded by the workers’ compensation commission or arbitrators. The attorney should also have done his research in the workers compensation decisions to ascertain a ballpark figure as to where that settlement should fall. Therefore, the client is really going to be relying a lot on his or her counsel and whether or not the attorney has actually put in the work that he’s supposed to do on behalf of the client.

What should be included in a settlement request?

Settlement requests largely depend on the severity of the injury and other factors as well; the more serious of an injury or the more permanent the injury, the more the employee is likely to recover .

Below are some of the considerations that the attorney and the client need to take into account when they decide whether or not to settle:

One consideration is whether or not to leave medical open.If somebody is permanently and totally disabled, often the insurer is not going to want to leave the medical portion of the claim open. However, that is a consideration that the employee must take into account. If they do have permanent, disabling, or debilitating injuries and they close the claim then the employer’s going to cut-off those payments so that they don’t have to continue to pay for any future costs.

Another thing to consider when deciding whether or not the time is right to settle a work comp claim is any reimbursement that may need to be made to the health insurance company, as well as, additional medical care providers that might need to be compensated.

In some situations, Medicare is going to be involved to ensure those Medicare interests are also properly protected if necessary.

Does a Settlement Typically Include All New Bills or Does It Just Include the Future Costs?

If the employer is found to be liable, then the insurer is going to have to pay for all past medical care and treatment related to the injury. If there is a possibility of future medical expenses , then that is a consideration that the attorney and client need to look at when they go to settle. Even in those instances, determination has to be made as to whether or not they even want to close medical.

It may be better for the client to leave the medical open, which means they may have to have a trial. Often the insurer is unwilling to leave that medical open. That is certainly something to take into account, but not to the same degree that it does in personal injury case.

Compensation and workers’ compensation is primarily based on permanency and the degree of the permanency. If there are future medical costs involved, certainly an expert is going to need to be consulted if the client wants to close the medical. However, sometimes it’s not advisable to do so.

If you need Answers To Common Questions About Settling A Workers Compensation Case, call the Dodds Law Office, PC in Bloomington, IL for a FREE 30 minute Initial Consultation and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.