Not all workers who file claims with their employer's workers' compensation insurer will end up having to be deposed. It's only when the insurer fails to act in good faith that you might have to take action. Workers' compensation insurers may not approve your claim or they might cut off your benefits without good cause. If you have had to appeal a workers' comp decision and are going through the legal process to get the benefits you need, you might have to participate in a deposition. For some tips on getting through your deposition, read on.
Find a Lawyer
Get legal help. If you have not been paid the workers' comp benefits you deserve, speak to a workers' comp lawyer. They know how to deal with the insurer, understand the appeals process, and can prepare you to take action and perform well at the deposition.
A deposition may come right before you have to appear in front of a workers' comp hearing officer but after any required mediation meetings. You should have plenty of notice and time to get with your lawyer and prepare.
Prepare for the Deposition
Preparation involves going back over your case from the beginning. Refresh yourself about the way the accident or illness occurred and read over your medical treatment records and history. If you have been keeping a pain journal (and that is highly recommended), reread the entries.
Your lawyer can provide a heads-up as to how the deposition will go. While a deposition is not as formal as a court hearing, everything you say will be recorded and you are under oath to tell the truth. A deposition is basically a question and answer exercise to extract information from you and any witnesses about your case.
When you are asked a question, take your time and be sure you understand what is being asked. If you don't know the answer, let that be known.
When you take action to be paid workers' compensation benefits, you are likely disputing a particular fact. You can expect the deposition to focus around that disputed fact and that can help you prepare for being questioned. For example, if you were denied benefits due to the presence of a certain medication in your system, you should be prepared to show that the prescription was legal, that the medication was necessary, that it did not interfere with your job, and that it did not have anything to do with a workplace accident.
Speak to a local workers' compensation attorney to learn more about your deposition and how to ace it.