If your workers’ compensation claim was denied or disputed, you requested a hearing to resolve the matter, and the Hearing Officer reached a decision you do not agree with, you still have options. The next step is to file an appeal. In filing an appeal, you can seek a reversal or revision of the decision reached at your workers’ compensation hearing. Here we will look at the overall appeals process for workers’ comp claims in Nevada.
If you received an unfavorable decision at your workers’ comp hearing, you will have 30 days to file an appeal. This is accomplished by completing and filing a “Notice of Appeal and Request for Hearing Before the Appeals Officer” form with the Nevada Department of Administration, Hearings Division. An Appeals Officer will then be charged with the task of handling your appeal by way of a hearing, which is conducted “on the record” and is digitally recorded in the event that your case should go to the next level of appeal.
During this hearing, the Appeals Officer will review the decision made by the Hearings Officer but will conduct an entirely separate hearing based off evidence separately submitted by the injured worker and employer/workers’ compensation insurance provider. Any evidence that was presented to the Hearing Officer will not be reviewed by the Appeals Officer unless it is submitted again, or if a written request is approved to have such evidence admitted.
Upon considering all evidence submitted by both parties, the Appeals Officer will make one of the following decisions:
If the injured worker still does not agree with the decision reached by the Appeals Officer, he or she can appeal this decision. The next step would be to file an appeal with the appropriate District Court.
It is highly recommended that you work with an attorney if you are considering a workers’ compensation appeal. If you did not already have an attorney representing you at your hearing, you should not discount the considerable benefit of having legal counsel in filing your appeal. A legal professional who is familiar with Nevada workers’ comp proceedings can help you properly prepare for your appeal, gathering evidence that needs to be presented in order to support your claim for benefits. Remember, your employer or their workers’ compensation insurance provider will most likely have an attorney present at the appeals hearing, and if you are not similarly armed with legal counsel you may find yourself at a distinct disadvantage.
An Appeals Officer will make his or her decision based on the evidence presented by your attorney at the other side’s legal counsel. The type and manner in which such evidence is presented will certainly influence the Appeals Officer’s decision, which will in turn influence your ability to recover benefits for your work injury or occupational disease. Considering the medical expenses you may be facing and the financial problems you may face due to lost wages from missed work, you will need all the help you can get.
Do not jeopardize your right to workers’ comp benefits and medical care – involve a Las Vegas workers’ compensation lawyer from Shook & Stone for the experienced counsel you need, and deserve. We offer a free consultation to help you get started – contact our offices.