If You Are Not Careful, Your Workers’ Compensation Settlement May Cost You Your Government Benefits

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Posted by Tim Semelroth

Attention! Iowa’s Workers’ Compensation laws changed July 1, 2017. This article’s information may be out of date. Visit our Workers’ Compensation Page for more information.

Accepting your Iowa workers’ compensation benefits in the wrong way can cost you money in the long run. The money you receive for an Iowa work injury can reduce the amount of money that the government will pay you in Social Security Disability benefits or Medicare benefits. It doesn’t seem fair, but this sort of thing can happen when an injured worker accepts an Iowa workers’ compensation settlement without taking the necessary precautions.

Here are a couple of examples of what we are talking about:

  • The Social Security Administration will only allow a disabled worker to receive so much money in benefits during a particular month. If a work injury disables a worker so that he qualifies for Social Security Disability benefits and that worker does not insist on special language in the Iowa workers’ compensation settlement paperwork, the Social Security Administration will reduce the injured worker’s monthly Social Security Disability check. The ultimate result is that the injured worker gets less total money.
  • Medicare will not pay for medical treatment if it believes that an injured worker has already received money in a settlement for future medical care related to a work injury.  It will also not pay if it believes the injured worker should have set aside a portion of a workers’ compensation settlement for future medical care – even if the worker otherwise qualifies for Medicare.

If the injured worker has not taken the proper precautions when settling a workers’ compensation claim by including special language in the settlement documents, the worker can end up paying for medical treatment out of his or her own pocket that otherwise would have been covered by Medicare.

Do not let Social Security Disability or Medicare take a bite out of your Iowa workers’ compensation settlement. Before accepting a settlement after an Iowa work injury, the safest thing to do is have your case evaluated by a qualified Iowa workers’ compensation attorney.

An experienced Iowa work comp lawyer can advise you how to settle your case so that you avoid any costly Social Security or Medicare landmines. The proper Iowa workers’ compensation settlement paperwork can make all the difference in the world.

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