Massive changes are about to be implemented to the way Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Claims are processed and awarded. Reports indicate the state is moving from a court-based workers’ compensation system to an administrative system.
According to an article from OK News, injured workers must currently have their case for benefits heard by a judge. Under the new system though, a panel of appointed arbitrators would determine benefits.
The system will place a greater burden of proof on claimants to prove their injury and the fault and negligence of other parties. It will also allow employers a greater freedom of choice regarding the doctors that an injured employee must see for treatment.
Officials say the new system, which goes into effect February 1 2014, will create a more efficient and effective way of processing and distributing benefits. Opponents of the new system say it simply makes it more difficult for truly injured workers to get the benefits they need.
The Oklahoma Personal Injury Lawyers with J. Colbert Injury Lawyers are aware of how complex and difficult the Oklahoma workers’ compensation system can be to navigate. The firm is here to help and reminds employees that they always have a legal right to representation if they feel an employer or insurer is not properly compensating them for their injuries.