Under Iowa law if the payment of weekly benefits to an injured employee is denied, delayed or terminated, and the employer cannot show a reasonable cause or excuse, then the injured worker is entitled to be awarded penalty benefits. Penalty benefits are in addition to the benefits that were not properly paid. The penalty benefits can be up to 50% of the amount of the weekly benefits that were not properly paid. The exact amount of the penalty benefits is up to the discretion of the work comp judges.
Unfortunately, some employers and insurance companies do a very poor job of paying weekly benefits in the correct amount and in a timely manner.
Set out below is a modified version of a Post Trial Brief I filed in a case involving very serious injuries and terrible compliance by the insurance company in paying the benefits that were owed. I have changed the names and dates for privacy purposes.