Claim Resolution Settlement Agreements
A Claim Resolution Settlement Agreement (CRSA) is an L&I settlement option where all parties agree to close an injury claim for a specified amount. When agreeing to this settlement type, the injured worker exchanges all future benefits, except medical, for the payment.
Self-insured employers (SIEs) are more likely to use CRSAs. The most common reason for this is to save money and will, unfortunately, make it more difficult for you to get your compensation. The SIE will do everything in their power to deny it. However, they still need to follow L&I’s rules for self-insured companies. If you disagree with their decision, you have the right to appeal. Contact an experienced L&I lawyer for help as soon as possible to help with the process.
How Do I Qualify For A CRSA?
You must meet to receive a CRSA from the Washington State Department of L&I. Some of these criteria include:
- You must be over the age of 50.
- Your claim must be allowed and at least 180 days old.
How To Apply For A CRSA
- Apply online through the L&I website.
- Fill out an Application for Claim Resolution Settlement(F240-002-000) and return it to L&I by email, fax or mail.
How Are CRSAs Paid?
CRSAs are awarded in one lump sum when your L&I claim is closed.
Claim Resolution Settlement Agreement Process
Settlement discussions can be started by the injured worker, the employer, or by L&I and all parties will negotiate the specific terms of the settlement. If all parties agree on these terms, L&I will draft the settlement contract, circulate it for signatures, and send the contract to the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals (BIIA) for approval.
If the BIIA approves the agreement, there is a 30-day revocation period meaning that any party may revoke consent to the settlement for any reason during that time frame. However, L&I will continue to manage the claim and pay all benefits to which the worker is entitled to throughout the revocation period.
Finalizing The Claim Resolution Settlement Agreement
The CRSA becomes final when the 30-day revocation period ends. Payment begins within 14 days after the agreement is final. The claim is considered closed after the 30-day revocation period ends.
Limitations of Claim Resolution Settlement Agreements
The CRSA does not affect future injury or occupational illness workers’ compensation claims, including claims for benefits when the worker’s death is the result of a claim-related condition.
SIEs are responsible for their own settlement negotiations. The SIE may approach the injured worker or their representative to discuss settlement opportunities, but L&I must give prior written approval by mail for any settlement agreement that impacts a workers’ compensation insurance fund and allow 30 days for approval or denial of the request.
Your L&I Claim Is Worth More If You Also Have An Employment Law Claim
A significant number of L&I workers’ compensation claims often involve additional legal claims such as employment law or third-party claims. Many people file their claims without seeking representation from an L&I attorney and thus never discover that in addition to their L&I claim, they may be missing out on the ability to file an employment law claim or a third-party claim. Pursuing additional legal action has the potential to significantly increase a claim’s overall compensation.
What Is An Employment Law Claim?
Many injured workers find that their employer has taken, or plans to take, adverse action against them because they filed an L&I claim or they are out of work. You can file a lawsuit against your employer for several reasons, including retaliation, wrongful termination, disability discrimination, or unpaid wages. An L&I attorney that is experienced in both L&I workers’ compensation law and employment law can help you with your L&I claim while simultaneously filing a federal or state law claim for the violation of workers’ rights by your employer.
What Is A Third-Party Claim?
A third-party claim is one in which someone other than your employer or co-worker is responsible for your injury. If you have been injured on the job due to someone else’s actions or negligence, you may be entitled to additional compensation through a third-party claim, which combines your L&I claim with a personal injury claim using the same facts.
Unlike workers’ compensation payments, there is no limit to the amount of compensation an injured worker may seek in third-party damages.
Who Is At Fault For A Workplace Injury?
L&I is a no-fault system, ensuring compensation for any workplace injury. However, if a third-party is involved in causing the injury, you may be able to pursue legal action against them for additional compensation under third-party claims.
Can I Reopen My L&I Claim After Settlement?
If your workplace injury or occupational disease worsens, you and your doctor may apply to reopen your claim. There must be medical evidence from an L&I-approved provider stating that after your claim closed, the condition caused by the original workplace injury worsened and needs more medical attention.
The amount of time that you have to reopen your L&I claim depends on the benefits you are seeking:
- For medical treatment only, you may apply at any time.
- For both wage replacement benefits and medical treatment, apply within 7 years of the date your claim was first closed (10 years for eye injuries).
- If your claim has been closed for more than 7 years, you may apply for medical benefits. However, only the L&I Director may grant additional disability benefits such as wage replacement or disability awards for these claims.
Can I Protest My Settlement Amount?
L&I must receive a written protest within 60 calendar days of the date the decision was received (15 days for decisions about vocational benefits). The decision is final.
How Do I Know If I Have A Case?
The bottom line is that anyone who isn’t familiar with L&I claims should seek the input of experienced L&I attorneys who do.
After years of helping injured workers, Emery | Reddy has recovered millions for our clients. Our team of L&I attorneys is experienced in litigating and L&I claims, injury law claims, and employment violations. We understand how to leverage each claim in state (or federal) court and before the Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals to maximize the value of all of your claims.
Emery | Reddy Can Help You With Your L&I Claim
Emery | Reddy, PLLC is the only law firm in Washington State that is equipped to provide comprehensive representation on your case from every angle. Our Seattle L&I attorneys thoroughly assess every case to determine if our clients have additional claims, and at times this can extend far beyond the underlying workers’ compensation claim.
If you have been injured in the workplace call Emery | Reddy today to speak with our legal team for a free case review. Please remember to have your L&I claim number readily available.
Want More Information?
If you sustain a serious or life-changing injury and are no longer able to work, you could be entitled to a Washington State L&I disability pension.
The L&I workers’ compensation process is anything but straightforward. Find out the answers to your L&I workers’ comp questions today.
Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) Awards
You may be rated for a permanent partial disability (PPD) award before L&I closes your claim if you have completed treatment and are still able to work, but you have suffered a permanent loss of function.
Meet The Team
The L&I attorneys at Emery | Reddy are passionate about helping workers with L&I claims and employment law issues. We Help Workers®: it’s our motto and what drives us every day.
We know how L&I and big companies think, and we understand the tactics they use. Our Seattle L&I attorneys use that knowledge coupled with over two decades of experience to help our clients get access to the L&I benefits to which they are legally entitled to and hold employers accountable when they break the law.
With our law office location in Seattle, we serve communities throughout the region, including Vancouver, Bellevue, Everett, Olympia, Shoreline, Spokane, and Tacoma. If you’re struggling with an L&I claim, injury, or legal issue at work, please call us and see how Emery | Reddy can help you today.