Louisianans who are injured in a workplace accident or suffer a condition or illness related to their employment will undoubtedly be aware of workers' compensation benefits. There might be a notion that these benefits will be provided when the person has proof that he or she is suffering from the illness, condition or injury. However, there are times when a problem might arise in relation to a claim. A worker must know how to handle any issue that comes up through mediation or filing a dispute.
First, the employee should contact the employer or the insurer. In many instances, the problem with workers' compensation can be settled in this way. If this is not possible, the worker or the employer can ask for mediation. Mediation is done via conference with the Office of Workers' Compensation. The mediator will be a licensed attorney who has been trained in the process of settling these matters based on state law. The mediation conference is informal and the mediator does not have a bias in favor of the worker or the employer. The goal is to settle the matter before it goes before a workers' compensation judge.