South Dakota workers' compensation claims process

South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Claims Process

Workers’ comp claims for all non-federal employees get handled at the state level. Any injured or sick employee wishing to file a South Dakota workers’ compensation claim should follow the steps listed below.

Understanding Who’s Covered Under the South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Law

The South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation handles all workers’ comp claims and provides a mediator to resolve disputes. If your employer refuses to file your claim, you may contact the Division directly by calling (605) 773-3681. The only employees not typically covered under the South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Law are:

  • Domestic servants who work fewer than 20 hours per calendar week or less than six weeks in any 13-week period.
  • State or federal employees and certain elected officials.
  • Farm or agricultural workers.
  • Real estate brokers and truck owner operators already certified as being exempt by the Department of Labor and Regulation (DLR).

This policy protects employees and employers alike in the event that a workplace accident or occupational illness occurs.

Related: Tennessee Workers’ Compensation: How to File Your Claim

How to File Your South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Claim

Follow these steps when you’re ready to file your own South Dakota workers’ compensation claim:

  1. Seek medical treatment for your illness or injury immediately, then notify your supervisor in writing within three business days. If you wait any longer, you may forfeit your right to claim any South Dakota workers’ compensation benefits.
  2. Your employer must submit a First Report of Injury form to the DLR within seven days of your notification. Your supervisor should also notify your employer’s insurer.
  3. After receiving notice of your workplace illness or injury, the insurance company has 20 days to review your claim. The insurance company can also request an additional 30-day extension to investigate your claim if it cannot make a determination.
  4. If your claim’s accepted, you’ll typically start receiving benefits 4-5 weeks after the DLR received your FROI form.
  5. If the insurer denies your claim, you can request a mediation conference call from the DLR. Should mediation efforts fail, you have two years from your denial notification date to file a petition for hearing. During your South Dakota workers’ compensation hearing, you’ll present your case to an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). We strongly recommend getting an experienced workers’ comp lawyer to represent you at your ALJ hearing — and the Division agrees!

We know that no two South Dakota workers’ compensation claims are identical, so your own individual process may vary. For more information, download the Employee’s Guide to the Workers’ Compensation System booklet.

Available Workers’ Comp Benefits in South Dakota

Approved claims automatically cover all necessary medical treatments and other associated costs. Besides doctor’s bills, prescriptions and other medical expenses, you’ll get reimbursed for travel, meals and lodging required to receive treatment. If your workplace injury or illness makes you miss seven consecutive days of work, you may qualify for disability benefits:

  • Temporary Total Disability (TTD) – If your disability is total but temporary, you’ll receive a weekly benefits payment equal to two-thirds of your usual earnings. According to state law, you may qualify for up to the maximum of $705 per week in TTD benefits.
  • Temporary Partial Disability (TPD) – If your injury or illness temporarily limits you to working part-time hours only, you may qualify for weekly TPD benefits.
  • Permanent Partial Disability (PPD) – The South Dakota Workers’ Compensation Law provides a set payment amount for certain body parts that become impaired. This determination must be made by the physician or healthcare provider currently treating your workplace injury or illness.
  • Permanent Total Disability (PTD) – In the event that your illness or on-the-job injury leaves you totally disabled, you’re entitled to weekly benefits for life.

Before filing your South Dakota workers’ compensation claim, schedule your free, no-obligation legal consultation to review all your options. An experienced lawyer or advocate can get you the most benefits you deserve faster than going it alone. The right lawyer can negotiate with insurers, help gather medical evidence to support your claim and represent your hearing case. Workers’ comp attorneys typically work on a contingency basis, which means you’ll never pay a fee unless you win benefits.

Ready to see if you may qualify? Click the button below to start your free online benefits evaluation now!

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Lori Polemenakos is Director of Consumer Content and SEO strategist for LeadingResponse, a legal marketing company. An award-winning journalist, writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas, she's produced articles for major brands such as, Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Xfinity,, and edited several published books. Since 2016, she's published hundreds of articles about Social Security disability, workers' compensation, veterans' benefits, personal injury, mass tort, auto accident claims, bankruptcy, employment law and other related legal issues.