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Appealing a denial of workers’ compensation in Kentucky

On Behalf of | Oct 15, 2020 | Workers’ Compensation

No one attends work thinking they will get injured; however, this is a possibility whether one works in a high-risk position, in an office or remotely at their home. The idea is that if an employee is injured during the course of their work, he or she could seek workers’ compensation. Unfortunately, these matters are not always cleared or handled properly, resulting in some employees being denied workers’ compensation. Thus, it is imperative that workers understand their rights when it comes to filing an appeal to this decision.

Workers’ Compensation Board

If the final awards, orders and decisions made by the Administrative Law Judges concerning workers’ compensation are challenged in Kentucky, they are then passed to a section of the Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Board that handles appeals. This is known as the Appeals Section. This is the first step in the appellate process for claims concerning workers’ comp. This is a three-member board, and they are tasked with making a decision within 60 days of the last filing. Since 1994, roughly 65% to 72% of the workers’ comp decisions made by this board were no appealed any further.

Denial appeal process

When an appeal is filed, the board will first verify the timeliness of the filing along with the completeness of the record, among other things. When filing an appeal, this should be filed with the board within 30 days of the opinion or final order from the Administrative law Judge. After the filing of the Notice of Appeal, the employee has 30 days to file a brief. Respondents then have 30 days to file their brief after the employee files their brief.

If the decision of the board is contested, the next step is the Court of Appeals. If that decision s also contested, the final step that could be taken is bringing it before the Supreme Court. To give this process some perspective, in the past year, the Appeals Section process 273 appeals to the Workers’ Compensation Board. Of these 96 appeals were sent to the Court of Appeal. Of those, 28 were appealed to the Supreme Court.

Whether an employee was denied workers’ compensation or is contesting the award or order that resulted in the process, it is important that one fully understands all the steps they could exhaust when it comes to obtaining a favorable decision.