Your attorney and the defense have 30 days to settle your case, whether by Compromise and Release (C&R) or by Stipulation (Stip). Compromise and Release is where you completely close out your case -- you settle permanent disability (PD), temporary disability (TD), future medical, etc. Future medical money is included in your settlement in a lump sum. With Stipulation with Request for Award, you are settling your case on a permanent disability basis only and future medical is left open. You still get whatever TD is owed, if any, but PD is paid at $460/wk (usually) until your settlement is fully paid out. Further, your future medical will be left open -- but this future medical is pursuant to doctor recommendations only and must go through UR (Utilization Review) and be subject to defense authorization. Additionally, with a Stipulation you have 5 years from the date of injury to re-open your case for new and further disability, should your injury get worse.
In summary, your attorney and the defense have 30 days to settle your case, but you need to call your attorney and determine what is right for you. Further, C&R settlements almost always require a resignation, so be prepared for that. If you are still employed, you should settle by Stipulation because you will be able to remain at your job and keep future medical open. Also, if you will require a surgery down the line, and a doctor has recommended this surgery, settle by Stipulation.
I'm guessing that you have an attorney, since if you were personally talking to the defense lawyer and the judge, you would already know what the situation is. It sounds like the judge was asked to give the parties thirty days to draft settlement papers and submit them for approval. What happens next if that does not happen depends on what is written on the Minutes of Hearing. But, you really should be talking to your attorney about this.
Mr. Batchelder gives you good advice. The best source for this information is your own attorney.
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Mr. Candiano is licensed to practice law in Illinois and Indiana. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Links:
I agree with my colleagues. Seems to me that one of three things happened.
1. The defense attorney doesn't yet have authority to make an offer and needs another 30 days to get the authority from his client or
2. You and the defense attorney reached a deal and the judge gave the parties 30 days to do the paperwork and submit it for approval or
3. The insurance attorney made you offers to either C&R or Stip and you couldn't make up your mind and the judge gave you another 30 days to decide.
You were there and you should know what happened. Next time, don't leave the courtroom unless you understand what happened and what is going to happen next.