The New Jersey Workers' Compensation System:
Understanding the Importance of the Claim Petition

The Claim Petition initiates a formal New Jersey workers’ compensation system case. Timeliness is critical. In general, the law stipulates that an injured worker has two years from the date of the injury to file this petition. However, if the worker has already received certain benefits, the two-year timeframe begins from the last benefit payment or treatment date.


Consider Robert, a school custodian. He suffered a back injury while lifting heavy equipment. His employer covered the immediate medical expenses but denied him further medical benefits despite his authorized medical provider recommending a course of treatment.   Understanding the gravity of his situation, Robert consulted a New Jersey work injury attorney. Based on the attorney’s advice, Robert filed a formal Claim Petition, advocating for the additional benefits he was legally entitled to.


Worker completes Claim Form to request workman comp benefits needed for full recovery work accident


The Claim Petition is a formal application to the New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation. While often associated with disputes regarding the type or extent of benefits, it is also essential to claim permanency benefits, even when all medical and wage-related benefits have been fully paid.

The distinction is crucial. Workers’  might have all their immediate medical bills covered and receive their wage benefits without issues. However, if permanent injuries result in functional loss, the Formal Claim Petition is the route to claim those additional permanency benefits.

Consider Jonathan, a warehouse operator, who experienced a heavy crate fall on his foot. His employer quickly covered all immediate medical expenses and wage losses during his recovery. However, as the injury resulted in a permanent limp, Jonathan needed to file a Formal Claim Petition to claim his permanency benefits, even though there wasn’t a dispute over his initial benefits.

Once filed, a Workers Comp Court will be assigned to the case, including a Judge of Compensation. The Court assignment depends on which New Jersey County the injured worker resides in. Alternatively, the New Jersey County location of the employer will guide the Court assignment if the injured worker resides outside New Jersey.

"Industry need not wish, and he that lives upon hopes will die fasting. There are no gains without pains. He that hath a trade hath an estate, and he that hath a calling hath an office of profit and honor; but then the trade must be worked at, and the calling followed, or neither the estate nor the office will enable us to pay our taxes. If we are industrious, we shall never starve; for, at the workingman's house hunger looks in, but dares not enter. Nor will the bailiff or the constable enter, for industry pays debts, while idleness and beglect increase them."

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