Minnesota workers’ compensation has many abbreviations that get used by adjusters, attorneys, employers, etc. Understanding what they represent is a difficult task for employee’s who have never dealt with workers’ compensation. The following is a list of common abbreviations and terms used. Some people may abbreviate terms differently, but hopefully it will provide some guidance in distinguishing the various abbreviations.
Workers Compensation Abbreviations and Glossary
Accepted Claim – A claim that the insurer agrees to pay for the injury or illness. This does not mean however that this will always be the case. An insurer can later deny benefits even if they have paid benefits in the past
ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act – A federal law that prohibits discrimination against employees with disabilities.
Adjudicate -to act as a judge; to settle.
Admin Conf – Administrative Conference.
Administrative law – body of law that governs the running of administrative agencies. The rules and regulations created by administrative agencies.
Admissible evidence – evidence which may be introduced in court and considered by the judge.
Adjuster – See Claims Representative.
Affidavit – a written statement sworn to or affirmed before a person with authority to witness the oath.
Affirmative defense – a defendants answer to a claim petition which is more than a denial of the Employees charges and which presents evidence or arguments in favor of the defendant.
Aggravation – a circumstance which increase the seriousness or add to the injury.
ALJ – See Compensation Judge.
Answer – The first response or pleading made by the defendant/Insurer to the claims made in the lawsuit.
Appellant – The one appealing the decision or order.
Award – See Stipulation.
AWW– Average Weekly Wage – The wage used to calculate workers’ compensation benefits.
Burden of proof – obligation to provide evidence necessary to establish a disputed fact or degree of believe in the mind of the court. In Worker’s Compensation matters typically it is the employee who bears the burden of proof. Employee needs to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the work injury is a substantial contributing cause to the disputed benefits.
Case Manager – They should not be confused with a Claims Representative or even a QRC. They are not the same. A Case Manager will typically be assigned to the file by the insurance to look over the case and to keep an eye on the employee. Typically this is a nurse that gets involved with you and your treating physician. They do not have to abide by the same rules and regulations of a QRC. They are hired employees of the insurance company and may not have the best interests of the injured worker in mind.
Causation – the necessary link between an injury and the Resulting damages or condition.
Clmt – Claimant, employee, injured worker, petitioner, etc.
Claims Representative – Is the person who handles your claim on behalf of the insurance company.
Closed – a term used when certain benefits are no longer available to the employee based on a prior agreement or decision. This should not be confused with a file that has been “administratively” closed. Often times, insurance companies will claim that the file is “closed” although the injured workers is still entitled to benefits under the law.
CT -Cumulative injury. See also Gillette Injury. My also refer to a CT scan which is a diagnostic tool used to evaluate an injury.
Compensation Judge – CJ – This is the judge that may hear your case. Unlike civil court, in Minnesota, there is no jury and cases are heard before a compensation judge.
Contingent fee – is a fee paid to a lawyer depending on the amount awarded in the litigation. This maybe nothing if the suit is lost.
COR – Certificate of Readiness. A form used to request a hearing before a workers compensation judge when the parties are ready to try their case before the judge.
COD – Certificate of Dispute – A form used to let the State know that a dispute has arisen regarding entitlement to certain benefits.
Claim Petition – CP – A form filed with the State to request payment of various benefits.
CMCP – Certified Managed Care Plans -An employee covered by managed care selects a treating doctor from the network, which must include medical doctors, chiropractors, osteopaths, podiatrists, physical and occupational therapists, and specialists. An employee is not required to receive treatment for a work injury from a specific network of providers if notice of coverage has not been given or if the managed care plan is not certified.
Death Benefits -If an employee dies as a result of a work related injury, the dependents under the law may be entitled to dependency benefits.
DA – Defense Attorney. This is the attorney that represents the insurance company
DDD – Degenerative disc disease.
DEED – Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.
Def – Defendant. See DA.
Dependency Benefits – See Death Benefits.
Denied Claim – When the insurance company denies payment of benefits to the injured worker. This is typically done by a letter, Answer or Notice of Insurers’ Primary Liability Determination.
Disability Rating – See permanent partial disability rating or PPD.
Dispute – a disagreement about your right to payments, services or benefits.
D & O – Decision and Order.
DOI – Date of injury.
DOL – Date of Loss.
ER – Employer.
FCE – Functional Capacities Evaluation.
FD – Full Duty.
FFC – Full, Final and Complete Settlement.
FMLA – Family and Medical Leave Act.
F & O – Findings and Order – A written decision by a workers’ compensation judge regarding your case. The F& O becomes final if not appealed to the WCCA within 30 days.
Filing – Sending or delivering a document to an employer, insurer or government agency as part of the legal process.
F & O – Finding and Order.
FROI – First Report of Injury.
Future Medical – On going right to medical treatment for a work injury
GP – General Physician
Gillette Injury –An injury caused by repeated events or repeated exposures to work.
Heaton – A type of attorney fees.
Hearings – A legal proceeding where a judge will consider evidence, testimony and arguments concerning the case in order to make a decision concerning a dispute.
HIPPA – HIPAA is an acronym that stands for a federal law, enacted in 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
Insd – Insurer.
Independent Contractor – click here.
INT– Intervenor – A party that joins the workers’ compensation claim to assert a right to payment or reimbursement. Typically, these will be medical providers, third party payors, government entities, etc.
Impairment Rating – See permanent partial disability or PPD.
IR – Insurer.
Judge – See Compensation Judge.
LD – Light Duty.
Mediation – A voluntary conference with an independent party who acts as a mediator whose person is to help facilitate a settlement amongst the parties. Click here.
Modified work – When accommodations have been made to your work duties based on your physical condition.
Notice– When the employer has been advised of a work related injury. There are deadlines to report a work related injury.
OSHA -Occupational Saftey and Health Act
Roraff – A type of attorney fees.
RTW – Return to work.
ROM – Range of Motion.
Settlement – A agreement between you and the insurance company regarding your workers’ compensation case.
Settlement Conference – SC – A conference scheduled by the court to discuss settlement before trial.
Specific Injury – An injury caused by one event or incident at work.
SSDI– Social Security Disability Benefits- These are long term assistance for totally disabled individuals. These benefits come from the Social Security Administration. They may be reduced by the workers’ compensation benefits your receive.
Stipulation – Stip -A settlement agreement amongst the parties where they agree to certain terms. This needs to be approved by an Award which gets signed by a compensation judge. Once an Award has been issued the insurance company has 14 days to make payment.
Subd. 7 fees/Partial Reimbursement of attorney fees – Fees paid to the employee which are calculated based on the employee’s attorney’s fees.
Vocational Rehabilitation – A workers compensation benefit. This may include the assistance of a QRC, job placement and retraining.The QRC works with the parties to develop mutually agreeable vocational rehabilitation plans.
Wage loss – The monetary loss an injured worker has from missing work due to their injury. This is paid through workers compensation benefits including TTD, TPD or PTD.
WCAC-Workers Compensation Advisory Council.
WID-Worker identification number- the WID number is person-specific: a unique two- to eight-character number is automatically generated by the State. The WID number may be used rather than the Social Security number, with the date of injury, to identify a specific case file.