Workers’ Compensation insurers must follow certain procedures in order to lawfully terminate or reduce Massachusetts workers’ compensation benefits. The procedure for modification or termination varies greatly depending on how long the insurance company has been paying benefits.
THE FIRST 180 DAYS AFTER YOUR DISABILITY BEGINS
If the insurer has began to make payment of weekly benefits to you timely, namely within 14 days of notice, the insurer is allowed to stop payments to the employee without obtaining approval of the Department of Industrial Accidents (“DIA”) or the consent of the employee. However the insurer is required to give the employee seven(7) day written notice of their intent to stop benefits. The insurer’s written notice of termination must state their reasons and advise the employee of his or her rights to file a claim for further benefits. If you return to work at the same rate of pay you were earning prior to your injury, the insurer may terminate benefits effective the last day you were disabled prior to your return to work. If your own treating doctor clears you to return to your previous job, the insurer may terminate benefits regardless of whether or not your prior job remains available to you.