The rights a good applicant attorney can preserve include: timely medical care for the injury; temporary disability; permanent disability; and the right to either return to work or be provided a vocational rehabilitation voucher. Each of these topics will be discussed in turn.
1. Right to Timely Medical Care:
After a work injury, timely and competent medical care is essential for many reasons. If fast and good medical care is not provided, the injury could result in a much more severe condition. For example, a simple non-surgical hairline fracture gone unrecognized or treated properly could result in a complex fracture requiring surgery and could possibly result in a permanent impairment.
The employer has the right to dictate where the injured worker may get medical treatment for the first six months after the injury. However, if good cause exists to warrant a different doctor, the Law Offices of Nicholas Sheedy will of course immediately file for court hearing.
Often adjusters stall medical treatment while the injured worker cannot work and is receiving workers compensation checks in the form of temporary disability (TD). Under the CA Labor Code, an injured worker can only receive TD for a maximum of 2 years. If the worker’s condition has not stabilized in that time, they can be without any income whatsoever. Crafty adjusters will stall this type of injured worker out by not timely authorizing treatment and burning the 2 years of TD time to exhaustion. The unrepresented injured worker then is at the mercy of the adjuster who will then offer small full and final dollar settlement to resolve a very valuable claim.
This insurance company “method” is just plain wrong and they have ruined many peoples careers and lives as a result. Don’t be lulled into submission by the insurance companies’ tactics, call the Law Office of Nicholas Sheedy and we will get and keep your case on track, and you out of the dark.
2. Right to Temporary Disability (TD):
An injured worker is entitled to wage loss pay in the form of TD for either 2 years maximum or until a doctor has declared them permanent and stationary (P&S), meaning that the condition has plateaued.
The rate at which TD is paid is roughly 2/3 the injured worker’s average weekly wage maxing out at $1000 per week. So if one’s average weekly wage was $500, their TD rate would be $330. However if one’s average weekly wage was $2500, only $1000 per week could be gained from TD. The same applies if an injured worker is taken off partially for work (TPD). They would get 2/3 of the lost time in TPD benefits. But once again, TD can only be gained for a maximum of 2 years.
Adjusters often underestimate the value of TD owed injured workers and many go underpaid. One of the first things done by the Law Office of Nicholas Sheedy is to calculate the client’s average weekly wage and determine if they are and have been paid TD properly. If not, demands are sent, penalty petitions go out, and a court hearing is set. We make sure our clients get the most they can from this 2 year benefit.
3. Right to Permanent Disability (PD):
PD in workers comp is a term denoting the percentage of jobs an injured worker cannot do any longer and a corresponding dollar amount on a State chart. Usually a report by an Agreed Medical Examiner (AME) or a Panel Qualified Medical Examiner (PQME)will serve as the basis for the dollar amount for PD.
PD is paid weekly until the total amount is paid whether the injured worker has returned to the job or not. For example, if a 20% PD rating equates to $30,000 then the injured worker would get $230 per week for 130 weeks.
At The Law Office of Nicholas Sheedy, we first thoroughly examine and review the AME or PQME report to make sure all needed aspects of our client’s claim have been assessed. Then we adjust the report and determine the highest possible rating, and make a demand based on our rating. If the demand is not met, we wait ten days and file for court hearing to have the Workers Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB) make a determination on the percentage of disability and corresponding dollar amount.
Our team of lawyers works throughout the Sacramento area to represent clients at the bargaining table, in the courtroom, and before a host of state and federal agencies. We’re with you from the first phone call through litigation and appeal. With over 15 years of expertise, our outstanding team has built a track record for success at trial, in appeal, and in settlement cases.
Contact The Law Office of Nicholas Sheedy to find out how our attorneys can assist you or your organization. Let us help you today. Fill out our quick contact form or call us
at (916) 604-4291 for a Free Consultation.
Social Security Disability Law Firm & Workers Compensation Attorney in Sacramento, CA