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How long do I have to file a lawsuit on a workers' compensation claim that has not resolved?

Cleveland, OH |

Sustained work injury in late 2010. Ortho specialist seen, MRI ordered. Referred to ortho surgeon but not seen until beginning 2011. Surgery done Spring 2011. Went through physical therapy and then 3 shots of eflexual gel in Fall 2011. Did not meet relief expectations. Surgeon said he can't do anything else and referred to joint specialist in January 2012 who says knee replacement needed. Tried cortisone shot in January 2012 no help b/c of job requirements. Next appt in April 2012. Did NOT have this type and intensity of pain before surgery. Affecting ability to do job and now having hours cut from work schedule. Is there any kind of compensation that I can pursue?

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Attorney answers 5


Generally a worker's compensation claim must be filed within two years. If you do not have a filed claim, you still have time to file since you indicate you were injured in late 2010.

If you do have a claim already filed, then you may be able to pursue benefits for that claim. However, you should probably consult a lawyer. Most lawyers would not charge for an initial consultation and can explain what your options are. The lawyer can determine what benefits (temporary total, wage loss, etc.) you might be entitled to, and see whether a motion for additional allowances should be made in your claim. Given the medical history resulting from the injury, it is important that someone review your claim and make sure that all of the conditions you are experiencing are covered by worker's compensation.

Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice. It is merely intended to provide general information to aid the poster in finding answers to the problem posed. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. In most cases, it is best to contact an attorney directly to find answers to your problems.


There is a two year statute of limitations for filing a Workers' Compensation claim. It is important that you consult with an experienced WC attorney. An attorney can help you determine which types of benefits (temporary total, wage loss, permanent partial, etc.) that you may qualify for. Many WC attorneys will review your potential claim at no cost and will represent you based on a percentage of your recovery, if any.

Disclaimer: This does not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been formed through this answer.


Did you file a workers compensation claim? As previously stated, the general rule is you have two years to file a lawsuit regarding workplace injuries. You should contact an attorney as soon as possible to have the details of your accident reviewed. Most lawyers will not charge for the initial consultation.


In Florida, the time frame (Statute of Limitations) is two (2) years from the date of the injury. However, that may be extended beyond the two years, provided that you see an authorized workers' compensation physician at least once a year. We have open and active cases that are five, ten, and fifteen years old, BUT our clients are reminded to get medical care from an authorized workers' compensation doctor as often as medically necessary, but NEVER less than every four to six months. In that fashion, you keep "resetting the clock" and the case can continue for years to come!

Now, reading your question carefully, I see that in addition to your question about time frames, you are also concerned about the medical results. That makes perfect sense and health is so much more important than almost anything else! You do not have "control" over a workers' compensation doctor like you do when you are using regular insurance or cash to pay for hois or her services. There are ways, however, to affect the outcome and you should consult not only with an attorney, but specifically someone who has a lot of experience in workers' compensation. It is a legal field that is quite different from other injury related laws and you do not want someone who just dabbles in it, but you do want someone who has practiced it for years, knows the law well, but also knows the medicine involved, the doctors, and the defense attorneys. There are no guarantees in any legal case, but with your health at stake, you really do want to increase your odds of a good physical recovery. Good luck!

Vance B. Moore, Esq.
(954) 772-2644


Henry Arnett's answer is very good. The only thing I would add is if your employer is a self-insured employer and if your employer paid your medicals for the injury, then the statute of limitations is 4 years. You need to speak with an attorney as soon as possible.

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