Q: Is there a time frame as to how long it takes to settle a worker's compensation case? Approximate
A: This depends first on the extent of the injuries. The goal is to get back to work, and eventually back to a point known as "Maximum Medical Improvement" or MMI. This means that you are either back to where you were before the work injury occurred, or you're at the point where no further medical intervention will be helpful. After this MMI date, you will need to wait anywhere from 3 to 6 months for what is called a permanency evaluation. This is where a doctor will evaluate, but not treat, you to determine to what degree you are permanently impaired from these injuries. They will offer a rating to each body part that is part of the claim. The insurance carrier will likely then order you to go for an IME. They'll schedule this with a different doctor, who will do a similar evaluation, and likely come up with lower numbers for the disability rating. Then, depending on whether or not the sides can stipulate as to what the rating should be, there could be a hearing to determine this. After all of this, then it is possible, but not always advisable, to settle a worker's compensation claim.
Difficult to give a hard & fast time frame here because some of these cases involving more severe injuries go on for years and years and years. Others are finished in as little as 9-12 months, but they do take longer on average than other tort type injury claims such as automobile accidents.
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