Going to court over compensation issues can be stressful, especially for the average employee with limited resources to fund representation. However, the Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) offers an alternative that does not require litigation: mediation.
What is mediation?
Mediation is a service provided by the DLI to work out wage disagreements. A mediator will meet with all parties, including the employee and representatives from the employer and insurer. Then, the mediator will speak with each party separately and together while conveying settlement proposals until they reach an agreement. After coming to a decision, all parties will sign a resolution. The process concludes after serving and filing the agreement.
This service is free. Also, involved parties can choose from a selection of arbiters professionally trained in negotiation and mediation with experience in claims management, litigation and more.
In addition, the DLI has other accessible functions to help you sort out your compensation conflicts:
- Inquiries and assistance: If you have questions, you can ask the DLI for guidance. They can also help you talk to insurers as needed.
- Certifying disputes: Before scheduling an administrative conference, a mediator will review and explore the possibility of resolution. If deemed impossible, the mediator will certify the disagreement.
- Conferences for medical and rehabilitation disputes: You can ask for an administrative conference for problems regarding rehabilitation and medical conflicts.
You can use these free services depending on your circumstances. You can also call or email the DLI for further questions.
Benefits of mediation
Certain situations require litigation, but mediation offers a free alternative to solve your compensation issues. A shorter process also means you can move on faster. The sooner you straighten things out, the closer you are to peace of mind.