This post discusses five tips on how to prepare for your workers’ compensation hearing. Hearings are a key part of a denied NC workers’ compensation case. The Bishop Law Firm represents workers' compensation clients in Raleigh, NC and surrounding areas. Call us today for a free case evaluation, (919) 615-3095.
The point of a workers’ compensation hearing is to provide the North Carolina Industrial Commission (NCIC) and Deputy Commissioner hearing your case with testimony detailing how you got injured, how you reported your injury to your employer, and what treatment you received. You, as the plaintiff, have the burden of proving these facts.
As a common sense matter, aggression towards your former employer or opposing counsel will not help you prove these facts. The hearing is your opportunity to ask for help from the NCIC.
Five Tips on How to Prepare For Your Workers’ Compensation Hearing
In general, here are some pitfalls and mistakes to avoid:
- Always answer with a verbal response such as “yes” or “no”, try to avoid answering only with non-verbal responses. This keeps the official record clean and easy for the commissioner to understand later.
- Take time before you answer and try not to interrupt. This rule applies whether you are answering questions from the other attorney or questions from your own attorney.
- Don’t try to guess an answer. Always answer to the best of your ability, even if the answer is “I don’t know” or “I don’t remember”.
- Don’t exaggerate events, your symptoms, or your physical limitations. Exaggeration will hurt your credibility in the eyes of the Commissioner, and in turn will sharply reduce your award.
- Trust your attorney. Like the director of a play, your attorney will guide your testimony in a logical way that will show the Commissioner that you have met your burden to prove your claim.
All in all, the hearing process can be intimidating, but with the help of a NC Workers’ Compensation attorney, you can better understand how to prepare for your workers’ compensation hearing.
The Bishop Law Firm represents clients injured on the job in Raleigh, Cary, Durham and surrounding areas of North Carolina. We do not get paid unless we win, and we offer free case evaluations. Call us today, (919) 615-3095.
Also read NC Workers’ Compensation FAQs