The Oregon Workers' Compensation statute allows for settlement of accepted and denied claims. However, there are some pitfalls to avoid, especially when resolving a claim that has been accepted. This article focuses on some pitfalls involved with the accepted claim, which is settled through a claims disposition agreement.
Under this kind of agreement, the injured worker's giving up all benefits except for medical services. In some cases, the insurance company will phrase the settlement document to include any further or future claims for new medical conditions. a new medical condition is a condition that was not previously accepted.
One kind of new medical condition is called a consequential condition. This is a situation where one medical problem arises as a direct result of the on-the-job injury.So, for example, if you injured your right shoulder, and as a result, you overuse tear left shoulder, and now require treatment for that condition, your claims disposition agreement may prevent you from seeking coverage for the new medical condition.
You may also be relinquishing your right to obtain an attorney in some of these agreements. Be sure, if you resolve the claim on your own, to preserve your right to seek attorney fees so that if you run into problems, you can hire an attorney.
Under this system, an attorney does not earn a fee unless he or she is instrumental in obtaining a benefit, or at least an increase in an existing benefit. All fees are approved by the State of Oregon, and are paid directly by the insurance company, or come out of any additional compensation your attorney obtain for you.
Call us at 503-325-8600 with your questions. We have offices in Beaverton and Astoria, and can meet to discuss your issues.