Workers who are injured in the Boston area and are not independent contractors have the right to pursue a workers’ compensation claim. As a workers’ compensation claimant (or injured worker), the process of securing benefits is set forth by guidelines made clear by the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA). A skilled Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyer can help ensure that all timelines are met, and beginning with reporting requirements, represent you throughout the process of seeking benefits.
The DIA makes clear that after being unable to earn wages for five days, injured workers are eligible for weekly compensation benefits. These days need not be consecutive, and at this point, the employer will be required to file a form reporting the injury. Before any type of formal hearing takes place, there must be a conciliation.
A conciliation is defined as a type of informal meeting between the claimant, their attorney, and the employer’s insurance company’s attorney, as well as a conciliator from the DIA. During the conciliation, the conciliator will work to facilitate an agreement between the claimant and the insurer. If the parties are unable to reach a voluntary agreement, the claim will be referred to an Administrative Law Judge, who will conduct a conference.