I have heard recently some injured workers are being told by their Employer’s TPA (third-party Administrators) that they have to give a recorded statement about their injury. If the worker refuses, they are told their claim will be denied or rejected.
While it is true that an injured worker must cooperate in providing information about their injury it is NOT true that they must consent to a RECORDED statement. An unrecorded conversation is fine, so is a written explanation. There is no requirement that the worker consent to a recorded statement in order to have their claim properly adjudicated.
I am not exactly sure where this insistence for a recorded statement originates. It does not seem to be a problem with the Claims Managers at the Department. It seems to be with the TPAs for the self-insured employers, and even more so with the TPAs for the Retro Employers. These latter are shadow managing a claim which is technically managed by the Department. These Retro TPAs can be very aggressive. The less paid in benefits, the larger the Employers’ Retro refund (in very broad brush strokes). Some of these TPAs are out of state, although that is really no excuse for misrepresenting the law. This is most likely symptomatic of broader involvement in claims management with out corresponding oversight and required training. You’ll see more on these themes in the coming days.
The message? Know your rights. If you’re not sure – ask.