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Lexington, NC |

How long dose it take work comp to offer a settlement after you have a fce test done

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Attorney answers 7


Somewhere between 30 days and 13 years. A doctor probably needs to review the FCE test, which is just one of about 50 elements involved in valuing a case. The FCE is probably not a particularly important event in the global perspective of your total WC Case.

We offer general concepts, but you should give ALL your facts to a licensed Attorney in your state before you RELY upon any legal advice.


I'm NOT licensed in North Carolina, but with family in Mint Hill, Asheboro and Charlotte I've had to nose around the NC Industrial Commission regulations...and I never saw any state timeline for any settlement offer.

A Functional Capacity Evaluation doesn't exactly 'conclude' your evaluation. I'm pretty sure the doctor has to weave the findings on the FCE into a final report ( Ican't see any form on the NC Industrial Comm'sn list for 'rating' an FCE report by itself).

Have you checked out the NC Ind. Commission page for Injured Workers? I'll pop in the link... go look there.


No two cases are the same. No two insurance companies are the same. If they are doing an FCE then that usually means you are at maximum medical improvement (MMI). After the FCE, the insurer can try to find you light duty employment within the terms of the FCE or the insurer can offer a settlement. Which way the insurer goes may depend upon your employability.

Contact a NC WC lawyer for further advice.

This response is meant to be information only and should not be considered to be legal advice. This information is not meant and should not be construed to be the formation of an attorney client relationship. I practice Virginia Workers compensation law and Social Security Disability law.


As stated above, it's really difficult to give you a timeline as all cases are different and a lot depends on your return to what is called "suitable employment". What complicates it even further is that this definition changed back in July of 2011 so the circumstances could be different depending on the onset of your injury. You should really contact an attorney to thoroughly evaluate your case. I am happy to answer any additional questions you may have.

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If you have had an FCE, it seems likely that your treating physician is preparing to give you a disability rating. If you are back at work, earning the same or similar wages as before your injury, the insurance company will offer you a disability payment based on that rating. Please be aware that you have a right to a second opinion on the rating by a doctor of your choice, paid for by the insurance company. If you are not back at work, beware of settling on the rating, because you may be entitled to continued weekly benefits until you return to work, and settling on the rating may bring that to an end. You would likely benefit by consulting an NC workers' compensation attorney.

This communication is not intended to establish a lawyer-client relationship. Any advice is intended for the general public and may not be appropriate for a particular case. Talk to an attorney about all the details of your case before taking any action.


As other folks said, there is no set timeline for settlement. In fact, the workers' compensation insurance company is not required to ever settle your case - all it has to do is to continue paying compensation until you are able to return to work or until it has another basis to terminate compensation.

FCE testing, while sometimes helpful to your doctor, isn't always the best way to determine your ability to perform full-time work. You should really speak to an attorney about your options going forward and make sure that you are protected.


After the FCE, the doctor will likely give you a "PPD rating." Here is an AVVO "Legal Guide" that I wrote recently that explains your election of benefits after you have received the PPD rating.

This answer is intended as general information and not as specific legal advice. If you want to have a free consultation with me, please contact me through AVVO.

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