When the insurance company decides that they are going to stop paying you wage loss benefits they are required under the law to file what is called a Notice of Intention to Discontinue Benefits or NOID. The form you receive provides various instructions on how to request a conference concerning your benefits. Typically, you have a very short window, sometimes 12 days, in order to request a conference. You want to make sure that you or your attorney requests a conference as the conference will provide you with an opportunity to dispute and contest the stopping of your wage loss benefits. This type of conference is called a “.239” Conference.
If a conference has been requested in a timely fashion, a conference will be held within 30 days. Arguments are made at the conference as to why benefits are not to be discontinued. No live testimony is given – only arguments. These conferences are held at the Office of Administrative Hearings or by phone depending on your location.
It is highly recommended that you have an attorney at a 239 conference. An attorney can make sure that the right arguments are being made. In most situations the insurance companies have attorneys represent them at these conferences. You should have representation too.
Following the conference the compensation judge is required to issue a decision, within five business days, as to whether benefits should have been discontinued. If you prevail, benefits will need to be reinstated, however, the other side may appeal by filing a Petition to Discontinue. If you lose an Objection to Discontinuance can be filed but benefits are not recommenced unless you prevail at a hearing. An attorney can help to file the appropriate documentation.