Appealing a Workers’ Compensation Denial in New Jersey
In the aftermath of a work-related injury, you have the right to pursue benefits through the New Jersey workers’ compensation system. Don’t be surprised, though, if your claim is initially denied—it happens far more often than you might believe, even when the facts of your case seem uncomplicated. But you are not without options when your application for benefits has been rejected—there are means of appealing that decision.
In New Jersey, you can contest the denial of a workers’ compensation claim in two different ways—through an informal process and through a formal process.
When you opt for the informal review, things will typically move more quickly, but you customarily won’t be able to bring witnesses to the hearing. To follow this process, you must first prepare and file an “Application for Informal Hearing” with the New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation. A judge will be assigned to your case and you’ll receive notice of the date and time of your hearing. The actual hearing will typically involve you, the judge and a representative of your employer. The judge will make recommendations as to how the case should be resolved, but you don’t have to follow those recommendations.
The formal process can look somewhat similar—you’ll submit a claim petition and receive notice of the time, date and location of your hearing. With the formal process, you may have to wait 6 months for a hearing, whereas it may be just a few weeks for an informal hearing. In addition, the hearing will more closely resemble a trial, with the parties calling witnesses and introducing evidence. The judge will render a decision, which can come weeks or months later.
Whether you choose the formal or the informal process, you can always appeal the outcome to the state courts in New Jersey—your initial appeal will go to the Appellate Division of the Superior Court.
Contact Gregg A. Wisotsky, Esq., Partner, Javerbaum Wurgaft Hicks Kahn Wikstrom & Sinins, PC
We offer a free phone consultation to every prospective client. For a complimentary evaluation of your case, contact our office online or call us at 973-241-7468. We will come to your home or the hospital to meet with you, if necessary. All major credit cards are accepted.