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Important Workers’ Compensation Time Limitations to be Aware of in Iowa


Here in Iowa we have workers’ compensation laws that require most employers within the state to provide benefits to employees who sustain qualifying injuries or illnesses in the course of their employment. However, in order to be eligible to collect workers’ compensation benefits in Iowa the injured employee must abide by several key time limitations. Some of Iowa’s most important workers’ compensation time limitations are as follows:

  • Providing Notice of Injury: Under section 85.23 of the Iowa Code injured employees who wish to recover workers’ compensation benefits are required to notify their employer of their injury within 90 days of its occurrence, or within 90 days of the date on which the employee knew or should have known of their injury, unless the employer already had actual knowledge that the injury occurred.

This notice is not required to be presented in a particular manner (although providing notice in writing is always advisable from a legal standpoint), however it must be sufficient to inform the employer that a specific employee sustained a work-related injury at a specified time and place. Be aware that this notice can be provided by either the injured employee or by someone else on the employee’s behalf.

  • Two-Year Time Limit: Section 85.26 of the Iowa Code affords injured employees who have not received weekly workers’ compensation benefits in Iowa within two years of the date on which they were injured the opportunity to file an application for arbitration. However, injured employees who have not received weekly workers’ compensation benefits or filed an application for arbitration before this two-year time period expires may be denied benefits for violating this two-year statute of limitations.
  • Three-Year Time Limit: Section 85.26 of the Iowa Code also sets a statute of limitation that affords injured employees who have been paid weekly workers’ compensation benefits in Iowa three years from the date of their last payment to file an action for additional benefits with the workers’ compensation commissioner. Injured employees who fail to file a claim for additional benefits within this three-year window may be denied additional benefits, however, it is important to note that this statute of limitations does not apply to injured employees who are applying for additional benefits needed to pay for medical expenses that are reasonably necessary to treat the employee’s injury.

Please note: abiding by these times limitations is extremely important as injured employees who fail to do so may be denied workers’ compensation benefits in Iowa! 

Let Us Assist You Today 

If you’ve suffered a work-related injury or illness and are interested in collecting workers’ compensation in Iowa it is essential that you abide by all of the time limitations outlined above. Unfortunately this is sometimes easier said than done. If you have questions about when or how to file notice or claims regarding your injury or illness the experienced workers’ compensation lawyers of the Noyes Law Office P.C. are here to help. Our firm offers free no obligation consultations to prospective clients so if you have any questions related to an Iowa workers’ compensation claim contact our Fairfield office today at (641) 472-3236 and set up an appointment.

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