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Jo*mar 06-15-2010 09:50 PM

Workers compensation - Tips and suggestions
Let's fill this thread with as many tips & suggestions for dealing with the work comp system that we can come up with.

If it works out well and gets lots of input from all of us that have been through, or are going thru the system, I will make it a sticky thread, so it will be easy to find.
And more info can always be added as we go along.

like ideas on -
How to choose a wc atty
How to find the best drs

and many more topics

Jo*mar 06-24-2010 01:02 PM

Picking an attorney {atty} these tips should help when scouting for a good one almost anything legal.

Some suggestions I recall from long ago & past postings -

Go hang out at some hearings/trials for the type of case/claim you are considering. Even just in the lobby waiting area you can get a feel for who might be good and who to avoid.

Then go visit /hang out awhile at the offices of who you are considering
Is it organized and well run?
Does the staff act professional?
These should give a good idea of how competent /professional atty is.
There may be some good attys with poor staff office management skills but why chance it.

Internet searches of names that you are considering.
I know there are rate your MD sites , maybe rate your atty sites too??

And the state website for the area /State Bar Association website etc. check those places

Jo*mar 06-26-2010 11:48 AM

A few sites with more tips on selecting an atty - general legal help - but the ideas are helpful for finding a wc atty also.

alt1268 11-11-2011 01:23 PM

Make sure your atty. is familiar with your type of injury. WC is great for taking advantage of you.
You are entitled to 66.66 percent of your pay. Gas to and from any apt. (dr.s, therapy, picking up perscriptions)
You have the right to see a dr. familiar with your injury.
Most important, If you are in pain and your dr. won't do anything, get another

stressedout 11-12-2011 06:55 PM

When i asked my attny if I was entitled gas for appts etc he said no?? I'm in NJ been dealing w/RSD now almost 3 yrs.


Originally Posted by alt1268 (Post 823920)
Make sure your atty. is familiar with your type of injury. WC is great for taking advantage of you.
You are entitled to 66.66 percent of your pay. Gas to and from any apt. (dr.s, therapy, picking up perscriptions)
You have the right to see a dr. familiar with your injury.
Most important, If you are in pain and your dr. won't do anything, get another

rmschaver 12-14-2012 11:01 PM

What I have learned
1. Understand that workers compensation is governed by a commission not a court. As such laws and precedence are not as quickly evolving as a court. It is also 100 years old and reflects it's age.

2. LEARN what the laws that govern work comp in your state are!!! Many libraries have a law section and librarians usually love to help you learn! Even if you get a lawyer you need to know the basics.

3. Know there will be at least four parties involved in your case. You, your employer, the work comp insurance co. and at least one doctor. Each party will have a different interest. Even if you have a lawyer their interest will be in the case and protecting the interest of that case. IMO a lawyer is a must if your injury is serious.

4. DO NOT let the nurse/case manger that works for the insurance co. be present in the room when you see the doctor. Everything she/he needs to know will be available to them in the doctors report. They are only there to manage costs, they do not care if you get the health care you deserve!!!

5. Pick or use doctors you know! If you do not know them get referrals from people you know and trust. If you don't get the chance to pick do not let a doctor minimize your concerns. It is the doctors responsibility to explain each symptom you have. They are required to explain it in terms you can understand. It is perfectly acceptable to disagree. BE CIVIL if you do disagree!

6. Get a copy of every doctors visit and review them. The doctor is required to make you a copy for free. There maybe a small admin fee for this but it is usually very small. Do not accept any errors, you can demand that they be corrected. Be sure to get copies of all imaging and the associated report for that imaging.

7. KEEP YOUR BIG MOUTH SHUT. Blabbering about what you think is going on with you or what you have learned can really muck things up. Business managers have developed strategies for dealing with work comp injuries and a company that really has the employees interest at heart is as rare as hens teeth. Most companies are only concerned about the bottom line and a high cost injury is just another cost to be managed.

8. Last but not least, be honest, direct and civil. Being difficult, rude and disrespectful WILL NOT be helpful to your case. Be reasonable work comp will not make you rich. It will only cover your wages and any health issues that are documented and identified by the doctor. Lie about what your issues are and chances are the doctor, ins. co. or your employer will find out. When that happens your case in the 100 year old system will go south on you so fast...

9. Keep your records and document everything even phone calls with your own lawyer.

lefthanded 12-20-2012 01:21 AM

What rmschaver said! A nice concise list of good advice.

•I might add that when you are injured it is W/C's job to get you back to pre-injury status, or as close as possible (MMI). There is every chance you will end up living with pain and limitations. "Just fix it so I can go back to work" tends to work better with our cars than it does with our bodies.

•Once you have an attorney representing you, you most likely will be unable to discuss your claim with your adjuster. Keep in mind attorneys are often slower at returning your call than adjusters. As an adjuster for 13 years I couldn't tell you how many calls I got from claimants complaining that their attorney would not return their calls. That is not your adjuster's problem.

•Vocational counselors are there to find you employable doing anything . . . not something that pays what you had been earning. If you are lucky they will work with your employer to get you back to work at your old job, or another position that fits your new capabilities. If not, be prepared to be told you can do a number of jobs you would never consider doing in your lifetime.

•Your adjuster, nurse or voc may be really nice, but do not be fooled into thinking they are your friend. Many an injured worker got a rude awakening believing this to be true. Some CAN be very nice, and maybe even conscientiously decent, but who is paying their bill? Remember that formula!

•Keep in touch with everyone. After each physician visit call your adjuster and your employer with an update. It looks good, and documenting that you have been diligent never hurts.

•If you have an intervening illness unrelated to your injury, see your PCP. If you have to miss therapy, or treatments, or an office visit with your W/C A/P, it will help. Likewise, it is not unheard of that treatment of an illness might postpone treatment of our work injury, so you will want this documented.

•If you are injured in therapy report it to your A/P. Ask if it should be included now in your covered conditions.

•And yes, always be as polite as possible. And if for some reason your do lose your cool, apologize. It keeps your working relationship free of unnecessary tension.

•Often it feels like you are "doing all the work" on your claim. Get used to it. Get over it. No one else is going to do the things that fall to you as well, as diligently, with as much desire to see them done as you do.

rmschaver 01-21-2013 07:11 PM

One more thing
If a doctor writes you a referral or script and they are not a work comp doc, work comp can not prevent you from same. They may threaten to not pay but that is easier said than done. Work comp may try to claim it was un-needed but they have to prove why. Once a doctor has signed his/her signature they are committed. They will fight for that commitment. To rescind a script or referral sets them up for a lawsuit.

jinga 04-09-2013 04:19 AM

All good tips here
My advice that I wish I could go back and do over - Do not tell your supervisor\manager ANYTHING concerning your injurie(s). Only provide work notes from doctor that is it!!!! I actually though the questions my manager kept asking me were out of concern. I was in an auto accident and that is something most people relate to in their own families at one time or another. It ultimately caused my employer to make revisions to job and others road blocks to returning me in any capacity; however disability will tell you if you can blink, talk, push a button then, you should be able to work doing something.( there is not concern if the job doesnt pay but min wage) there is no correlation to what you were doing prior to injury\accident and how that can alter your life and well being in all aspects. Checking tickets at Costco doesnt begin to compare to being a systems engineer. Also understand your benefits prior to getting hurt on the job. I wasnt all that concerned with them as I though they existed so who thinks something is ever going to happen to you to actually need to use them.

HR departments are nothing more that mouth pieces for the corporation they serve, and WILL DO NOTHING to aid an employee when a Manager or the Company are engaging in suspect\wrong\corrupt\deceitful behavior.

Also please take a look at your own auto policy,
LTD policy if you have one. If you can afford it, increase your underinsured motorist coverage. I was hit by a drunk driver who cannot even be located by their own insurance carrier and they had\have nothing which by law means they pay you nothing! Your own insurance foots the bill and then if you dont have descent coverage yourself, well you are SOL. Oh and if this is also a work related MVA - WC your helath insurance, LTD, or private insurance policy are intitled to everything they spent first and foremost, and that is before your atty get all of their expenses paid etc.. so in the end little to nothing from almost nothing leaves absolutely nothing! Just trying to keep it REAL.

Lonely_5555 08-11-2013 11:55 PM

W/C for Carpal Tunne help pls
I've had 2 EMG tests and both came back negative for carpal tunnel from my last 2 previous doctors. However, My right hand feels numb and tingling very bad theref I decided to
Go to different orthopedic doctor (diplomate American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and he is also fellow American academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons) to get the 3rd opinion.
The EMG test still came out negative but this doctor wrote me a report confirmed that I has Carpal Tunnel syndrome, it is worked- related.
Do you think the w/c will accept my case without any possitive test beside just my doctor report.
Please give me advise.
Thank you so much.

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