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Should I Settle?

By James Gardner

August 29, 2012

At some point in your worker’s compensation claim, you will be presented with the opportunity to settle. The question is, should you take it?

Preparing for the Unknown Unfortunately, many work place injuries can rear their ugly heads years down the road. If you face the potential of future complications from your injury or are receiving ongoing care, a settlement probably isn’t the best option. With an ongoing injury, permanent partial disability is most likely a better option. Permanent partial disability will keep the claim open and it will stay active as long as you are receiving treatment. However, when you file for permanent partial disability you will receive a settlement offer. How you respond to this offer can have a big impact on the success of your worker’s compensation claim.

Determining the best time to settle There are a number of factors that can have an impact on your decision to settle and it is important that you settle at the proper point in the process. Wait too long and your worker’s compensation claim can go stale and die. Settle too soon and you may not be covered for future complications that may arise from the injury. The key is to find the peak time in the process — that point where there is still an urgency to close the claim but you know that any ongoing complications will be accounted for in the settlement amount.

Settlement is a negotiation process No settlement offer is set in stone. It is important to know that you have the right to counter any offer you receive. The problem is, when you go to settlement you are facing professional negotiators who are experts in the process. They deal with hundreds or even thousands of settlement offers every year. Without a professional on your side, you can get steamrolled in the process.

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