In Arizona, workers' compensation cases, insurance carriers and the Industrial Commission will issue notices that only have a 90 day protest period. Some provide as little as 30 days to appeal the notice.
If the Arizona injured worker fails to file a request for hearing within those 90 days, the injured worker is stuck with the result of the notice.
Requests for hearing must be filed at the Industrial Commission of Arizona. The best word of caution is to confirm that the Commission received the request for hearing, typically with a stamp from the Commission that shows they received it within the 90 days. Many injured workers go wrong with assuming that the Commission received their request for hearing via fax.
The Industrial Commission has now set up a more user-friendly website which will also allow you to file requests for hearing electronically which provide you with a receipt.
If an injured worker fails to file a request for hearing within 90 days, there are very few excuses to solve that problem. If the notice of claim status for which the request for hearing is directed was sent to the incorrect address and the injured worker can prove that with clear and convincing evidence, that's an excuse. Other excuses include justifiable reliance from the Industrial Commission on the Commission, insurance carrier, or employer. Another excuse is if the injured worker was a minor, insane or legally incompetent at the time of the issuance of the notice.
Other than those excuses, the notices are binding.
That's why it's crucial for injured workers to contact an attorney when they receive a notice of claim status of notice of award from the Commission to make sure that their rights are protected.
Please feel free to contact us for a free consultation on your Arizona workers' compensation case.
Matt C. Fendon, Esq.
Arizona State Bar Certified Specialist, Worker's Compensation Offices Statewide in Arizona 602-256-2000, Ext. 306