What does ‘claimant per se’ mean and should you be one?

Nov 05 2014

Claimant per se. If you don’t know that term means, you might not want to be a claimant per se. The term refers to a person making a Colorado workers’ compensation claim in a legal proceeding without the help of an attorney.

When a person is injured on the job or comes down with a work-related illness, an employer or employer’s insurer might do what they can to have that person’s workers’ comp claim denied. When that happens, many claimants want to have at their side a Denver attorney well-versed in Colorado workers’ compensation law.   

Some prefer to go it alone, which is of course their right and their choice to make. There are risks involved in doing that, however. The biggest, perhaps, is that if and when they do come to an agreement over compensation for a serious illness or injury, that agreement is permanent. They cannot go back and redo the agreement if they later find out that recuperation is going to last longer than anticipated or if they learn that the medical bills are going to be higher than expected.

Note this wording from the Colorado workers’ comp agreement the claimant signs: “… this settlement, when approved by the Division of Workers’ Compensation or by an administrative law judge from the Office of Administrative Courts, ends FOREVER the Claimant’s right to receive any further workers’ compensation money and benefits even if the Claimant later feels that Claimant made a mistake in settling this matter or later regrets having settled.” The highlighted “forever” is capitalized by the state of Colorado; they want you to be sure not to miss that critical word.

In that way, you understand that even if you make a mistake and even if you have regrets, the agreement is forever. Something to consider very seriously before taking on an important workers’ comp claim involving your health, wage replacement, medical care and more.