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In workers’ compensation cases Medicare may be a secondary payer

When filing a workers’ compensation case, few people worry about where the money comes from. They are so burdened by concerns regarding their finances and their ongoing ability to work that they are only concerned that the employer pays up. However, there are a few other considerations to watch out for.

The Missouri Department of Labor states that workers’ compensation cases may have an impact on the benefits received from other sources. Similarly, those benefits may also impact how the workers’ compensation case gets resolved. Medicare is one of the many benefits identified here as potentially causing problems.

This is because many workers who become injured might not only qualify for benefits under workers’ compensation law. They might also become eligible before benefits through Medicare now or in the near future. In fact, in many workers’ compensation cases, Medicare shares some of the financial burdens and becomes a secondary payer. Because of this, people who are eligible for Medicare have a responsibility to notify Medicare before a workers’ comp settlement.

According to Medicare.gov, it may also end up contributing to an injured worker’s expenses if the employer’s insurance company refuses to pay any money while reviewing the claim. Medicare may then continue to make payments while the claim is still pending, which could last for 120 days or even longer. This is one instance that may cause a worker to be receiving Medicare benefits just as they are about to receive a workers’ comp settlement as well.

The laws governing this area of labor rights are complex. Coupled with a focus on recovery and potentially facing future disabilities, many people simply forget to follow through with the necessary steps. Because of this, many rely on professional assistance to handle the process or advise them while they focus on moving forward.