When your insurance company accepts your Oregon Workers’ Compensation claim, it must determine whether the claim is “disabling” or “non-disabling.” When a claim is accepted as “disabling,” then the insurance company must issue a Notice of Closure. Your claim is ready for closure when your attending physician has determined that you are “medically stationary.” At that point, the insurance company must gather the appropriate information to issue a Notice of Closure. However, sometimes the insurance company does not do its job.
Your option is to make a written request to the insurance company to issue a Notice of Closure. The insurance company has ten days from the date it receives the written request to either issue a Notice of Closure, or notify you in writing that it is refusing to do so. If the insurance company refuses to close your claim, you can request a hearing, seeking an order that the claim be closed. In addition, you can request that the insurance company pay a penalty for its unreasonable refusal to close the claim.
Sometimes, the insurance company will not respond at all. This may or may not result in penalties.
Why is it important to get your claim closed? Simply stated, when your claim is closed, you are moving forward from the injury, and can concentrate on returning to work, whether it be with the vocational benefit, or a modified position with your current employer.
If you are approaching claim closure on your Oregon Workers’ Compensation claim, and you have questions, call us at 503-325-8600. We work with folks every day facing these issues.