If an employer wishes to stop workers’ compensation benefits, they must file a Notice of Suspension to you.
In order to do this, they must first file a petition with the New York Workers’ Compensation Board to modify or end your existing benefits. Once they do, you should receive a letter explaining what’s happening and why it’s happening.
You also have the right to file a Notice of Petition to preserve your benefits.
Signs Your Employer Wants to Modify Your Benefits
Employers often start taking steps to build a case for the reduction or elimination of benefits before they act.
The two most common steps are calling for an Independent Medical Exam (an IME) or calling for an Impairment Rating Evaluation. An Impairment Rating Evaluation exists to determine how impaired or disabled you really are.
These evaluations are most often performed by doctors who insurance carriers pay to issue opinions that favor their goals and bottom line.
Why would an employer try to modify benefits?
There are several reasons why employers might take such a step, including:
- Your refusal to comply with medical appointments, treatments, or instructions.
- Your failure to file paperwork such as an employee verification form.
- Your employer believes you’ve recovered and are capable of returning to work.
- The employer feels you’ve failed to comply with some other provision of the New York Workers’ Compensation Act.
While the burden of proof will be on the employer, you should still speak to a New York workers’ compensation lawyer right away if you are in danger of losing your benefits, especially if you still genuinely need them.
What should you do if an employer attempts to modify or terminate your benefits?
The best thing you can do is to contact an attorney right away. At this point, it is unlikely that you will be able to advocate for a restoration of benefits on your own successfully. Workers’ compensation law is quite complex, and you’ll be required to file responses, attend hearings, and navigate the legal process. Your employer and their insurance carriers will certainly have lawyers to try to push their agenda; you need one to defend your interests.
Our team has helped thousands of New Yorkers preserve their benefits. If your benefits are in trouble, contact us to schedule a free consultation today.