Mediation can help an employer and employee resolve disputes in a workers’ compensation claim without the need for a final hearing before the judge. It is often requested later in the litigation process—after the parties have tried to work out the case on their own—and after much of the discovery process of obtaining doctors’ reports and other evidence has been completed.
4 Reasons Asking for Mediation May Benefit You
Both parties to a workers’ compensation claim can file a request for a mediation hearing. You may want to request it if one of these circumstances applies:
- Issues need to be resolved to move the case along.
- You have obtained a final rating report but your employer has failed to respond within a reasonable time.
- Both parties have exchanged their final rating reports, but have been unable to settle the claim.
- The parties have been unable to settle a Second Injury Fund claim—where the worker’s current injury combines with a prior disability to create a more serious problem—and the employee has medical records or other evidence supporting his claim.
An Administrative Judge Will Oversee Your Mediation
A mediation hearing is a confidential meeting between the judge, the parties, and the parties’ attorneys to identify areas of agreement and compromise on disputed issues. The administrative judge will review the request for mediation to determine if the issues have been developed sufficiently to make mediation productive. If so, a hearing would be scheduled within 120 days of the request.
If you have been injured on the job, start an online chat to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation where we can explain your rights under workers’ compensation laws in Kansas and Missouri, the claim process, and how we can help you get the benefits you’re entitled to.