When you have been hurt on the job in New Jersey, you have the option to settle your case before your injury fully heals, or before you’ve reached maximum medical improvement. There may be a number of reasons for doing so—you may simply want to be done with the insurance company, or you may want a lump sum settlement. A settlement may or may not, however, be in your best interests. You should talk to an experienced attorney before making the decision to accept a settlement.
In New Jersey, there are two types of workers’ compensation settlements:
- Section 20 settlements—This type of settlement is only available if the workers’ compensation insurance company initially rejected your claim. By accepting a settlement, you relinquish all further claims related to the injury, including any claims for future medical treatment. Furthermore, you will be prohibited from reopening your claim at any time.
- Section 22 settlements—If you and the workers’ compensation insurance company can agree on a specific permanent disability rating, you can settle any workers’ compensation claim, even one that has been approved, with a Section22 settlement. A caveat, though—under a Section 22 settlement, payments will always be in installments under the state’s schedule of benefits.
Why You Might Want to Wait to Settle Your Workers’ Compensation Claim
Though you can settle the claim at any time, it’s usually wise to wait until your doctor has indicated that you’ve reached MMI, or maximum medical improvement. If you wait, you’ll still be eligible for coverage for any procedures that become necessary. If you settle too early, and you need additional surgery, you won’t have coverage.
Contact the Law Offices of Mallon & Tranger
To learn how we can help you if you have been injured in the workplace, contact us online or call us at 732-410-6094 (toll free at 877-320-0692). There is no charge for your first meeting. We have offices in Freehold, Toms River and Point Pleasant.