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Workers' compensation claims come with expiration dates

Employees who are injured on the job have rights, including seeking compensation for medical expenses, loss of wages and other damages under applicable workers' compensation policies. What many New Hampshire workers may not realize is that filing a claim under such policies comes with a time limit.

According to the New Hampshire Department of Labor, a person who is injured in relation to job duties has up to two years to notify an employer. Notification is the first step in making a claim. In most cases, the two-year limitation begins upon the date of injury, but there are exceptions. In some cases, an employee develops a work-related illness that comes on gradually. Notice must be provided the date a person knows of the illness.

Though notice is a first step toward filing a claim under workers' compensation, there are different time limits for the claim itself. Someone seeking compensation or coverage of expenses for medical treatment, death benefits, rehab or disability has three years from the date of injury to file a claim. If a claim is denied by the self-insured employer or insurance carrier, then a worker has 18 months to file a petition for a hearing on the matter. Failure to comply with either of these time limits could result in the loss of any compensation under a workers' compensation plan.

Understanding the statutes of limitation related to workers' compensation cases is just one of the many legal facets involved in file a successful claim. When a worker is denied benefits or feels an insurer is not provided adequate benefits, legal options do exist for elevating the matter in the courts.

Source: New Hampshire Department of Labor, "Timeframe for Filing a Claim" accessed Jan. 22, 2015

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