Like other states, Iowa has legal deadlines that apply to workers’ compensation claims.
Injured employees in Iowa should keep these deadlines in mind, as failing to observe them could mean the employee forfeits any otherwise valid claim for workers’ compensation benefits.
How these deadlines apply to one’s particular case is a question that injured employees in the Davenport area should discuss with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
First Notice of Injury
An employee has an obligation to notify his or her employer within 90 days of a work-related injury. In some cases, for example, a slip and fall while on the job, this is a fairly simple deadline to apply.
However, Iowans should remember that, with respect to workers’ compensation benefits, the definition injury is quite broad. Injuries can include gradual damage to one’s bodily that is related to one’s profession, as in the case of work-related repetitive motion injuries.
Likewise, exposure to toxins or other harmful substances are injuries that can trigger the 90-day deadline.
In such cases, the 90-day timeline starts to run when an employee knew, or should have known, that he or she had an injury that the injury was job-related.
Statute of limitations
In addition to reporting injuries in a timely fashion, an employee also has to file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits or, alternatively, as for arbitration. An employee has two years from the date of his or her injury to do so.
Many disputes about workers’ compensation also arise over the amount of benefits an employer legally owes to an employee. Once an employee has received some payments, he or she has three years from the date of his or her last payment to file a claim for additional benefits.
In addition to the ones we’ve discussed, other deadlines will apply throughout the workers’ compensation process. For instance, if a worker needs to appeal a decision, they will only have so much time to do so.
Deadlines in workers’ compensation cases can be difficult to track, particularly for those who have limited familiarity with the system. Nevertheless, they are important; a missed deadline can spell thousands of dollars in lost benefits.