Workers' Compensation is an administrative process designed to compensate employees who have been injured at work. Receiving benefits for your injury can be as simple as filing a claim yourself with your employer's workers' compensation insurer. However, for various reasons, these claims are often denied or disputed by employers and/or insurance companies. When that happens, you can find yourself in a complex system of negotiations and appeals. In these cases, and in cases of serious injury where a lump sum payment would be better than a weekly distribution, it's smart to hire a workers' compensation attorney to represent your best interests and help you navigate the process.
We have thirty years’ experience helping injured Maine workers win their workers' compensation cases, and would love to use our expertise to help you with your case. If you also have a Social Security Disability (SSD) or Personal Injury case, we can assist you in pursuing them simultaneously.
The initial consultation is free, and there are no attorney’s fees owed by you unless you win your case. If you do win, Maine Workers’ Compensation Law (39-A MRSA §325) caps attorneys' fees at a maximum of 30% of benefits accrued in a contested case, and 10% in the case of a lump sum settlement.
If your employer or its insurer disputes your entitlement to Workers’ Compensation Benefits, they must file a Notice of Controversy (NOC) within fourteen (14) days of your injury with the Workers’ Compensation Board and mail you a copy of the NOC.
If you have been receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits and your employer seeks to either reduce the amount of your weekly check to a partial disability amount, or seeks to discontinue your benefits, they must mail to you by certified mail a Certificate of Discontinuance or Reduction of Compensation Pursuant to 39-A M.R.S.A. §205(9)(B)(1). This Certificate will provide you with a 21-Day Notice of the reduction or discontinuance of your weekly benefits, and your appeal rights.
If you, the employer, and the insurer reach an agreement, then you can release the employer and insurer from all liability for your work injury in exchange for a one-time payment called a lump sum settlement.
The Administrative Law Judge of the Workers’ Compensation Board will have to approve any lump sum settlement by finding that the settlement is in the best interest of all the parties after a hearing is conducted. The Judge will also need to make a determination of the amount of the permanent impairment due to the injury and the amount of anticipated future medical and prescription expenses as a result of the injury.
If you have received a Notice of Controversy (NOC) or a 21-Day Certificate of Discontinuance or Reduction of Compensation, please contact us immediately to discuss your options for legal representation. Additionally, if you are interested in negotiating a lump sum settlement with the employer and insurer, please contact us to represent you in negotiating the settlement monies you deserve.