Once you have exhausted all appeal steps and lost each of these, you have the option of filing a formal complaint with the Alberta Ombudsman. This is the final appeal stage. Again I remind you the DRB and Appeals Commission can only go by the wording on the appeal issue (usually stated on Request for Review). If this wording has been manipulated by an Appeals Advisor or Consultant, chances are you will lose with the Ombudsman as well. I am in no way trying to steer people in the wrong direction! Claimants are losing huge appeals due to this. These 3 levels of appeal departments can only go by how this is worded when applying the applicable laws and policies. MAKE SURE YOU ARE AWARE OF THE WORDING and how it applies to the decision you are appealing!
You are not able to file a formal complaint with the Ombudsman until you go through all levels of appeals with WCB. Once you have done this, it’s important to also know you only have a 12 month time limit to pursue this. They will accept complaints past this period with a viable explanation. The Alberta Ombudsman’s website is very good at explaining this process. They have an online report or you can send it all in by mail. I prefer the online because you can attach applicable documents. Take the time to read the information they provide for filing complaints. It’s actually quite simple. This also allows you to print the entire complaint off to keep for your records in case they call you. https://www.ombudsman.ab.ca/
The Ombudsman has the authority to access your claim file but you need to ensure they have the applicable documents. Sending documents to your claim file by you is important. We all know documents disappear! Be sure to include that you relied on the help of an Appeals Advisor and were not aware of any processes involved with appeals. You can even include that you later discovered the wording on the appeal issue is not what you instructed them to file. ALWAYS ask for a copy of the RFR!
It’s important to read through the Ombudsman’s page titled “Before Filing a Complaint”. This can be found at the following link: https://www.ombudsman.ab.ca/complaints/before-filing-a-complaint/ If you have become knowledgeable of why you lost the appeal, you can be successful with filing your complaint with the Alberta Ombudsman.
The link for the online complaint form is: https://www.ombudsman.ab.ca/complaints/make-an-online-complaint/
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