Suffering injuries at work is traumatizing enough. However, you would feel more financial pressure and stress if your workers’ compensation claim is denied by the insurance carrier. If you can file an appeal, following which, you must appear for a hearing before the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission. Hiring a workers comp attorney Newport News for your case is a good idea because the insurance company will come with a strong defense team. If you have never been to a hearing, here’s what you need to know.
- You need to be there in person. The Deputy Commissioner will want to know how the accident happened. Your statement is important, and for that, you need to be there for the hearing. Even if you have hired a lawyer, you cannot skip this.
- Dress appropriately. Because this is a matter of grave concern and involves officers of the court, you should dress aptly. Wearing anything formal or business casual is okay. The Deputy Commissioner notices everything.
- Most hearings are for 30 minutes. If the case is likely to take longer, your lawyer can inform the Commission. Depending on the needs of the hearing, an appropriate longer time slot can be shared.
- You must present all evidence before the hearing. You have one chance to present evidence, and you have to share all documents and details before the hearing. This includes details related to your job search, witness details, and medical reports. The evidence must be shared with the defense team too.
- Witnesses are required to be present. Witness testimonies are taken at the hearing, and they need to be there in person. Just submitting a written statement is not enough.
- Be clear with your testimony. Talk to your lawyer about your testimony, and make sure that you are clear about what you want to say. Listen to your attorney, and don’t say anything that’s contradictory to parts of your testimony.
- There won’t be any ruling on that day. After the hearing before the Deputy Commissioner, you have to wait for the decision, which will be mailed to you within eight weeks. If you are unhappy with the outcome, you have the right to appeal, and for that, there is a deadline of 30 days. The next hearing will be before the Full Commission.
Find a workers’ compensation lawyer now and get a free initial consultation for your case.