The Best Tidbits of News From The Workers Comp Community

 

 
While there have been no formal updates to the CMS website, the WCRC recently provided an update to Gould & Lamb that it will have all remaining cases that were not part of the previous streamlined process resolved by February 28, 2013, or will provide the specific information that is necessary for the approval process to be completed. Read more…
 
 
 
From skiing injuries to sniffles, there’s no season like winter for thinking fond thoughts of the American health care system. And there’s no time like exactly one billing period later for screaming curses at the American health care system.
With the Affordable Care Act here to stay and its changes already in motion, we present this week’s Cavalcade of Risk: articles on health insurance and its impact on our lives and economy.  Read more…
 
 
Lexis Nexis News:
 
 
"Larson's May Help Interpret Law, But Can't Supplant Text of Statute, by Thomas A. Robinson. Larson's Workers' Compensation Law is often used by federal and state courts to explain and interpret a workers' compensation statute, particularly when that statute is ambiguous. In a recent decision, the Kansas Supreme Court indicated that although consulting the Larson treatise is in order when the statute is unclear, it may not serve to supplant or alter the actual text of a statute. Read more about this case and other cases on Credit for Pension Benefits, Intentional Tort, and Substantially Certain Rule."
 
 
 
"Strong Association Exists Between AMA Guides Impairment Ratings and Earnings Losses, But Losses Vary Significantly Across Body Regions, by  Robert G. Rassp, Esq. & Robin E. Kobayashi, J.D. A new major study funded by CHSWC focuses on the AMA Guides Fifth Edition in California but has implications for the AMA Guides Fourth and Sixth Editions used in other states. The study purports to quell the main criticism that the AMA Guides can only measure severity of impairmentand not disability. The study examines whether there is a strong association between AMA-based impairment ratings and earnings losses for workers' comp claimants with permanent disabilities, thereby indicating that impairment ratings accurately reflect the effect of impairments on the ability to work. The study also examines…Read more"
 
 
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com.  Contact: mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com.
 
©2013 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

The Best Tidbits of News From the Workers Comp Community

 

 News From Gould & Lamb

 
 
Now more than ever, a competent and comprehensive prescription drug management program is invaluable. With legislation in constant flux, "pill mills" and the current opioid crisis, you need the highest quality certified professionals to provide cost-savings solutions that take the beneficiary's best interests and care into account.  Read more…
 
 
 
Gould & Lamb is proud to announce its 2013 launch of the National Institute for Medicare & Medicaid Education (NIMME).  After an extremely successful Jackpot! Conference Series in 2012, which focused on the various aspects of Medicare Secondary Payer Compliance and Mandatory Insurer Reporting (MMSEA Section 111), we have expanded our program to become a self-standing educational entity.  Read more…
 
 
 
The National Institute for Medicare & Medicaid Education will be hosting the first of four Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) Compliance conferences at Harrah's Resort in New Orleans, February 25th & 26th.
Building off the success of 2012's Jackpot! Conference Series,  NIMME will be raising the bar for education and resources in the MSP arena. With an extensive panel of faculty, these conferences will continue to be invaluable to any professionals dealing with MSP Compliance and MMSEA Section 111 Mandatory Insurer Reporting. Read more..
 
 
News From Lexis Nexis
 
 
"The astronomical benefits-related costs, protracted dispute resolution process, and numerous other ills associated with workers' compensation that have prompted reforms have also increased support for the "opt-out" movement. Opting out initially requires that a state enact a law that allows employers that would otherwise have to provide workers' compensation coverage to offer employees alternative forms of reimbursement for compensable harm. A study titled "Workers' Compensation Opt-Out: Can Privatization Work", of which Peter Rousmaniere is the primary researcher, comprehensively examines why some employers favor opting out over lobbying for reform." Read more
 
 
 
"On January 10, 2013, the White House announced that President Obama signed the Strengthening Medicare and Repaying Taxpayers Act (SMART Act) into law. Insurance organizations, including the American Insurance Association, hailed the SMART Act as facilitating property-casualty insurers’ compliance with Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) Act Section 111 reporting." To read the bill,click here.  
 
 
 
“The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed a criminal sentence on a defendant's guilty plea to wire fraud in connection with his scheme to reduce his company's workers' compensation premiums. The defendant had challenged the district court's "sophisticated means" and "leadership-role" enhancements under U.S. Sentencing Guidelines Manual §§ 2B1.1(b)(10)(C), 3B1.1(a), as well as the court's failure to vary downward, and its restitution award. Defendant admitted he had shifted payroll to less expensive job classifications over several years, and that he had also created shell corporations with unwitting or uninvolved individuals as ostensible "owners."" Read more…
 
 
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com
 
©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

The Best Tidbits of News From the Workers Comp Community

 

News From Lexis Nexis:
 
 
 
“The LexisNexis Workers' Compensation Law Community has selected its 2012 honorees. These top blogsites contain some of the best writing out there on workers' compensation and workplace issues. They contain a wealth of information for the workers' compensation community with timely news items, practical information, expert analysis, practice tips, frequent postings, and helpful links to other sites. These blogsites also show us how workplace issues interact with politics and culture. Moreover, they demonstrate how bloggers can impact the world of workers' compensation and workplace issues. View the list of honorees.”
 
 
Deciphering Section 28(b) After Andrepont, by Paul B. Howell, Esq.
“In 1822, a sweaty scientist in a dimly-lit room looked at a rock from Egypt and discovered the key to decoding Egyptian hieroglyphics. 175 years later, a Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals judge with a cup of coffee inSee FMC Corp. v. Perez, 128 F.3d 908, 31 BRBS 162(CRT) (5th Cir. 1997). Read more.”
 
 
 
 
Thousands of federal government employees suffer work-related injuries each year, most of whom recover and return to their pre-injury jobs. There are however, a small percentage of employees who are unable to return to return to their pre-injury jobs due to long-term physical restrictions. Although placement with a federal agency is optimal, it is not always possible, especially at a time when government jobs are being eliminated. This leaves a significant number of individuals with transferable skills, unemployed and heading down a path towards a life of unnecessary long-term disability.  Read more…
 
 
 
 
With more visibility and vulnerability in today’s business landscape due to social media, online commerce and doing business through mobile devices, it only makes sense that there would be more potential risks to a company’s reputation and brand. In fact, now more than ever, executives are attempting to protect their brands from these security threats by being more proactive and looking for blind spots in their risk management program.  Read more…
 
 
 
Austin, TX – Texas recorded a six percent decrease in work-related fatalities in 2011, the second consecutive year of decrease and the lowest level in a decade.  There were 433 fatalities in 2011 compared to the 2010 total of 461 fatalities.  Nationally, there were a preliminary total of 4,609 fatal work injuries in 2011.  Read more…
 

Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.comContact mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com

 

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

The Best Tidbits of News From the Workers Comp Community

 
Worker's Compensation Expert Rebecca Shafer will be presenting at the 21st Annual National Workers' Compensation and Disability Conference® in Las Vegas, November 7 – 9.
 
Rebecca would like to invite you to join her there and be a part of the nation's leading training event for workers' comp and disability management professionals. And, more importantly, to benefit from all the great strategies and best practices you’ll learn that will help you solve the biggest challenges facing our industry.
 
The organizers have given Rebecca a special discount to offer you– $320.00 off the on-site rate – even larger than the discount advertised in the brochure. You can attend all the sessions and networking events over the two-and-a-half days for only $975.
 
To attend at this special $320.00 discount, register by Oct. 22 using Promo Code SPKR12 (all caps).  Register at www.WCConference.com
 
 
 
News From Lexis Nexis:
 
 
 
The new mobile workforce raises many unique challenges in the world of workers' compensation. With respect to telecommuters, Larson's states: "When reliance is placed upon the status of the home as a place of employment generally, instead of or in addition to the existence of a specific work assignment at the end of the particular homeward trip, three principal indicia may be looked for: the quantity and regularity of work performed at home; the continuing presence of work equipment at home; and special circumstances of the particular employment that make it necessary and not merely personally convenient to work at home." Read more.
 
At the 21st Annual National Workers' Compensation and Disability Conference®, Nov. 7-9, Stuart D. Colburn will speak and moderate onThe New Mobile Workforce. Joining him are Roger A. Levy, Esq. and Alan S. Pierce, Esq. 
 
 
 
It is axiomatic that reliance on lay testimony and administrative expertise is not justified when the medical question is no longer an uncomplicated one and "carries the factfinders into realms that are properly within the province of medical experts". On the other hand, just because a party has a purported export willing to testify as to the medical question at stake, that does not mean the expert is free to express his or her opinion; the opinion must be based generally upon generally accepted scientific and medical standards. Illustrating this important point, a Maryland appellate court recently…read more about this case and other cases on wrongful death, retaliatory discharge, and unexplained fall.”
 
 
 
 
 
The Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation (TDI-DWC) has made changes to the TXCOMP Health Care Provider system at http://txcomp.tdi.state.tx.us/twccprovidersolution/home.html that effect health care providers.
 
·         Health care providers’ access to submit applications to be certified as a designated doctor, or apply for recertification has been discontinued.
·         Access to update License/Certifications and Specialties for health care providers who are certified as a designated doctor or have applied to be certified as a designated doctor is restricted to TDI-DWC staff only.  Read More…
 
 

Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  www.reduceyourworkerscomp.com Contact mstack@reduceyourworkerscomp.com

 

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

The Best News Tidbits from the Workers Comp Community

 
Get the complete low-down right here. We rounded up the best tidbits of news around the WC community so you don’t have to. It’s all in one place – the Roundtable.
 
LexisNexis Communities Examines Cases in WC World
Roundtable recommends signing up for the newsletter from Workers Compensation Law Community Powered by Larsons on LexisNexis. They keep current on WC cases and offer many insightful comments. Sign up for the newsletter here and get all this and more in your inbox. Here’s a summary of the articles you’d find there this week [WCx]:
 
 
1. Texas Court Ties Injured Worker’s Drug Overdose to Side Effects of Prescription Pain Medication
Thomas A. Robinson writes here, that subsequent injuries are compensable if the result of a compensable primary injury. He says these cases fall into two groups: the cases in which an initial medical condition itself progresses into complications more serious than the original injury and those in which the existence of the primary compensable injury in some way exacerbates the effects of an independent medical weakness or disease. Read his analysis of this Texas case regarding these principles.
 
 
2. Unnecessary Litigation in Workers’ Comp Claims Process: Training and Communication Are Key
John Stahl, writes that he recently heard a presentation by Dr. Bogdan Savych of the Workers’ Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) that the goals of the workers’ compensation system included “delivering benefits without too much unnecessary attorney involvement and litigation.” Stahl writes the presentation summarized a WCRI study that examined several reasons why a workers’ compensation claimant hired an attorney and offered strategies for reducing the costs and delays associated with that legal representation.
“The number of claimants who hired an attorney ranged from approximately 8-percent in Texas to more than 50-percent in Maryland. A claimant’s perceptions that pursuing workers’ compensation benefits would adversely affect that person’s employment status and/or that a workers’ compensation insurer denied a claim were the primary identified motivations for hiring an attorney,” he writes. Read more here.
 
 
3. Larsons Spotlight Looks at Recent Cases:
Larson’s Spotlight looks at several important court events this week, here.
1. In New York, Cap Imposed by § 15(6) Applies to Periodic Payments of Scheduled Loss of Use Awards in Same Manner as Other Periodic Payments of Disability Benefits.
2. From Virginia, Average Weekly Wage for Inexperienced Roofing Worker Computed on Worker's Share of Sum to be Paid, Divided by 52 Weeks.
3. Also Virginia: Injured Worker Receives YMCA Membership and Mileage for Unsupervised Pool Therapy as Part of His Medical Benefits Award.
4. From Pennsylvania, Slight "Crookedness" of Nose Following Injury Does Not Qualify for Disfigurement Award.
 
 
Return To Work Roundtable Opens on LinkedIn
The Workers’ Compensation Roundtable discussion group on LinkedIn has added the Return to Work Roundtable subgroup for people interested in discussing specific ideas, challenges and issues pertaining to the RTW process in Workers’ Compensation. The co-managers of the Workers’ Compensation Roundtable will be joined in the RTW Roundtable by Mike Benishek, Director, Risk Management & Insurance for PTG Management Company. Those interested in joining the group can do so here.
 
 
 
Texas Workers’ Comp System Requiring Subscriptions Now
The Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation (TDI-DWC) is now requiring participants to sign up to the TDI eNews by June 1, 2012, when they will begin to distribute news and communications through the TDI eNews.
To continue to receive e-mails from the TDI-DWC, subscribe online here. Mail lists offered, include:
1. Division of Workers’ Compensation eNews Update – Includes Division of Workers’ Compensation related rules, bulletins, educational session and training events and other related news.
2. Safety and Health eNews Update – Includes information on occupational safety and health matters, including safety tips and publications, upcoming training events, training DVD loans, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) updates.
Questions may be directed to Public.Information@tdi.state.tx.us.
 
 
 
Upcoming Cost-Control Webinar from Fisher & Phillips
Fisher & Phillips LLP labor and employment attorneys will present a webinar 2 p.m. June 4 offering employers advice on how to control workers' compensation costs. The presentation will focus on use-loss control and safety programs to prevent injuries from occurring and help employers understand how to best manage claim expenses. The hour long webinar is free, but registration is required.  Participation in this webinar has been approved for one hour of HRCI credit. Register here.
 
 
Watch Wilson’s One-Minute Video
If you prefer getting your WC news in video format, you are in luck. Bob Wilson from WorkersCompensation.com is reporting on top-read stories here. This week he talks about NCCI, CA DWC and a Tennessee Lineman as well as Shy Bladder Syndrome.[WCx]
 
 
Truckers Against Trafficking Informing Drivers What to Look For
Truckers and the travel plaza industry could do a lot to help catch human traffickers by virtue of what they see and where they are. Their website found here can give you the inside scoop on what is happening right here in the U.S. They say, “Human trafficking, a term for modern-day slavery, is a $32-billion worldwide industry with more than 27 million people enslaved. It has been reported in all 50 states, and the number of victims in the United States is estimated in the hundreds of thousands. This website has been created to enable members of the trucking/travel plaza industry and other travelers learn what you can do to help stop this atrocity.”
 
 
 
Note: If your company has any developments you'd like to share, please send them to us at: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com

 

 

 

 

Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 

 Editor Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher. Contact Mstack@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com. 

  
WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com
MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

Workers Comp News in Review April 1, 2012

 
LexisNexis Work Comp Community This Week In Review
 
The Workers Compensation Law Community Powered by Larsons on LexisNexis offers several great pieces this week:
 
 
First is this article by Roger Levy titled, “U.S. Supreme Court Issues Much Anticipated Decision in Roberts v. Sea-Land Services, Inc.” Levy explains the March U.S. Supreme Court decision answering the question of the meaning of LHWCA Sec. 6(c)'s "newly awarded compensation" clause in its decision in Roberts vs. Sea-Land Services, Inc. “Faced with two choices as to the meaning of the clause, the Court chose the one most favorable to employer/carriers and supported by the Director, Office of Workers Compensation Programs,” Levy writes.[WCx]
 
 
In “Work Loss Data Institute Warns of Fox Guarding the Hen House in State Treatment Guidelines,” by John Stahl, found here, Stahl explains that Phil LeFevre, a senior account executive at the Work Loss Data Institute, recently compared official disability guidelines (ODG) with other workers’ compensation treatment guidelines. “The overall theme was that the ODG provides more objective guidance than individual state systems that often reflect the self-interests of medical providers in that jurisdiction,” he writes.
 
 
Larson’s Spotlight this week narrows in on a recent case in which an injured worker is entitled to additional TTD benefits despite derogatory conduct. The Supreme Court of Arkansas decided in a case where a worker sustained a work-related injury, was placed on light duty for a period of time, and then fired for calling his supervisor an "insulting, derogatory, and vulgar name." Read more about this case and others in the spotlight here.
 
 
WCRI to Host Webinar April 10
The Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) is hosting “Hospital outpatient Costs and the Impact of Fee Schedules” for those looking to control medical care costs for injured workers. The webinar will examine the WCRI study to help attendees make comparisons between “hospital outpatient costs across states, identify key cost drivers, and measure the impact of reforms over time.” The webinar will be from 1 to 2 p.m. EDT, Tuesday, April 10, 2012.
 
 
To learn more about the webinar or to register, go here.
 
 
Managed Care Advisors Asks if FECA Regulations Will Change
In the recent issue of The Advisor, MCA notes that two proposed pieces of legislation would alter the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA). “The less controversial of the two, the Federal Workers Compensation Modernization and Improvement Act (HR. 2465), was introduced in the House of Representatives in July of 2011 and is currently pending in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. It includes measures to allow the Department of Labor to cross-match claimants' reported income to Social Security data. It also includes provisions to authorize physician assistants and nurse practitioners to certify traumatic injury and related disability,” the article says.
 
 
Read more here.
 
Study Shows Workers’ Compensation Medical Prices Were Higher without Fee Schedules
A Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) study shows that WC med prices were higher and grew more rapidly in states without medical fee schedules.
 
 
The study, found here, shows prices paid for medical professional services for injured workers were higher and rising faster in states without fee schedules compared with states that have them in place. The information was “designed to help public policymakers and system stakeholders understand how prices paid for medical professional services for injured workers in their states compare with other states and know if prices in their state are rising rapidly or relatively slowly,” according to WCRI.[WCx]
 
 
Dr. Richard Victor, WCRI executive director, said, “In documenting the growing prices paid for the medical care received by injured workers, this unique study also shows the effectiveness of medical fee schedules in controlling those costs.”
 
 

Note: If your company has any developments you'd like to share, please send them to us at: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com

 

 

Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

Broadspire Drug Abuse Summit and Other News from the Workers Comp Community

 
Broadspire Rx Summit
Danielle Lisenbey, chief operating officer for the Medical Management Services of Broadspire announced its first annual Rx Summit in Sunrise, FL March 22. As a leader in the industry, Broadspire's first Pharmacy Issues Summit should prove to be helpful. They write, “The purpose of the meeting will be to bring thought leaders from various organizations together to discuss relevant topics and issues surrounding pharmacy benefits in the workers compensation setting.

The intent is not to share the specifics of what various companies are doing, but rather to focus on the global industry issues themselves and what may be the possible trends and developments for the future. One key objective of the program will be to help to identify and define common threads that run through all components of the industry – across claimants, payors, employers and carriers.

Defining some of these commonalities will help the consumer to maneuver through the market. Each participant is invited to bring one operations executive and one clinical representative. This will be an opportunity to brainstorm and share ideas amongst industry peers that can help to influence positive impacts for all.”[WCx]

 
 
Email Mjaynes@choosebroadspire.com by March 15, 2012 for more information. The Summit is by invitation only.
 
 
Everything Business Corp! Magazine Tells how to Fuse Workplace Wellness Programs With Recovery
An article by Lisa Firestone addresses the way employers are continuing to struggle with a challenging economy. “Maximizing efficiency and productivity is no longer a goal to strive for, it is essential for continued growth and even survival,” she writes. “Recognizing this dynamic, it is not surprising that more and more employers are actively engaging in worksite wellness programs that have proven to be effective in lowering health care costs – in fact, according to American Journal of Health Promotion every $1 invested in a corporate wellness program returns $4 in reduced health care costs and $5 in reduced absenteeism over a period of three to five years.”
To read more on this topic, look here.
 
 
LexisNexis Communities Highlights Weekly WC Hot Stories
The Workers Compensation Law Community Powered by Larsons on LexisNexis offers this week three fascinating news articles:
 
1. The Defense of Intentional Self-Injury: Russian Roulette, Workplace Frustration, Accidental Drug Overdose, and More reviews Rashness Versus Intention in Self-Injury Cases, Impulsiveness Versus Intention in Self-Injury Cases and Suicide Test as Test for Self-Injury. It can be found here.
 
 
2. LHWCA: Responsible Employer Determination in Cases Involving Multiple Traumatic Injuries: Seeking Analytical Clarity is a thorough look at the same using relevant precedent, post-Albina board decisions, burden of proof; aggravation vs. natural progression: identifying the cause(s) of disability and sequential vs. simultaneous consideration of evidence. It can be found here.
 
 
3. Larson’s Spotlight on Recent Cases: Firefighter’s Rule Did Not Bar Tort Action against Homeowner examines the firefighters’ rule, an important exception to the usual third-party liability rules in which a firefighter (or other first responder) may not recover in tort from a landowner or occupier who has been negligent in starting or failing to curtail a fire. Read more here.
 
 
LexisNexis Editor Featured in Risk Management Magazine
Thomas A. Robinson, a contributing author and editor of LexisNexis resources including Larson's Workers Compensation Law and Workers Compensation: The Survival Guide for Business, wrote a fascinating article that was recently featured in the well-known RIMS magazine. Also a member of the LexisNexis National Workers Compensation Advisory Board, Robinson writes about 10 bizarre WC case that ended unexpectedly here.
 
The article is a great read and includes juicy stories such as what the courts decided when an obese employee broke a leg trying to get unstuck from a cafeteria booth, whether a construction worker who lost an eye trying to sledgehammer a found bowling ball on site and whether a fatal heart attack while holding a termination letter is still covered.
 
 
For more like it, sign up for the free weekly enewsletters in national and California editions by Robin Kobayashi here.
 
 
Need More, Faster WC Info? We have the Newsletter for You
Check out this LexisNexis newsletter that can keep you on top of what’s happening in our industry. Learn more here and sign up here.
 
 
Texas Department of Insurance Changes Pay Advance Form
The Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation recently changed the form injured employees use to request pay advances on their WC settlement checks. The form, DWC Form-047, Employee’s Request for Advance of Benefits, and the DWC Form-053, Employee Request to Change Treating Doctor is for an injured employee to request an advance of his/her workers’ compensation income benefits. The DWC Form-053 is for an injured employee who is not part of a certified workers’ compensation health care network, and whose claim does not involve medical benefits provided through a political subdivision pursuant to §504.053(b)(2) of the Texas Labor Code, to request a change of treating doctor.[WCx]
 
 
Workers’ compensation system participants should use the revised DWC Form-047 or DWC Form-053 on and after March 7, 2012. Previous versions of the form will no longer be accepted after June 1, 2012. For more information, check here.

 

 

 

 

Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 


WORKERS COMP MANAGEMENT MANUAL:  www.WCManual.com

VIEW SAMPLES PAGES

MODIFIED DUTY CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/transitional-duty-cost-calculator.php

 

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.

 

©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

Experts Sound Off on Hot Medical Topics

The LexisNexis Workers Compensation Law Community Powered by Larson's often offers insightful commentary into our industry. Below, we compile three of the most interesting contributions of late.
 
Stuart Colburn
Stuart Colburn, an attorney for Downs Stanford recently shared  a blog  regarding a November 2011 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that described prescription painkiller abuse as “a public health epidemic.”
 
 
Colburn noted the CDC feels that changing the the way prescription painkillers are prescribed would reduce misuse, abuse and overdose but still allow access to safe, effective treatment.(WCxKit)
 
 
 
Colburn frankly citizens the workers compensation system as contributing to these addictions and indirectly by contributing to lost time and injuries “attributable to decreased alertness and other ill effects of working while abusing prescription drugs.”
 
 
Colburn continues, “America's prescription drug abuse (PDA) problem is not nearly as well known as our War on Drugs. No war has been declared and yet American lives are being lost. The statistics are well known. American citizens make up 4 percent of the world's population. Yet, we consume 66 percent of the world's illegal drugs.”
 
 
His blog continues to site fascinating drug statistics not only from the CDC but also the U.S. Military, various states and many others. It is well worth a read.
 
 
 
Brian J. Caveney
Doctor and lawyer, Brian Caveney also writes in the LexisNexis communities’ blog an article titled, “Another Busy Year for Workers’ Compensation and Occupational Health.”
 
He concludes that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) of 2010 has changed much for the workers compensation industry including The United States Department of Health and Human Services adding eight substances to its Report on Carcinogens.
 
 
“Formaldehyde and aristocholic acids are now listed as known human carcinogens, and six other substances-captafol, cobalt-tungsten carbide, inhalable glass wool fibers, onitrotoluene, ridelliine, and styrene-are now considered as reasonably anticipated to be human carcinogens. This brings the total to 240 identified substances in the listings demanding thoughtful approaches to minimize exposure to workers,” Caveney wrote.
 
 
He also said the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan has had great affect on the WC industry. “Readers of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (LexisNexis) can refer to Chapter 44 for recent updates on the physics of radiation contamination and possible human health effects of exposure,” he wrote.
 
 
For WC matters regarding low back claims, Caveney directs readers to the updated Chapter 15 in Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (LexisNexis. And, lastly, he noted 2011 is the 30th  anniversary of the identification of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). “The infection has transcended its original death sentence upon diagnosis to a chronic disease state when adequately treated with the panoply of various treatment options these days. Once widespread fears of transmission in a host of occupational situations has thankfully now been limited to mostly preventable scenarios. Chapter 46 of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (LexisNexis) reflects these advances,” he wrote.
 
To read more, follow the above link to Caveney’s article.
 
 
“Workers’ compensation is no stranger to controversy,” writes attorney Robin Kobayashi in her LexisNexis blog Workers’ Compensation in a Medically Overtreated Society.
 
 
She cites physician Nortin M. Hadler, MD new book Rethinking Aging: Growing Old and Living Well in an Overtreated Society. “Dr. Hadler continues his no-holds-barred approach, warning that the Baby Boomer Generation and Generations X and Y hold unrealistic notions about defying the aging process with medical technology, thereby making them more susceptible for ‘medicalization and overtreatment,’ “ she wrote.
 
 
Kobayashi notes that marketing has become “sophisticated and pervasive in playing off people’s fears about health and longevity. … It’s no secret that Dr. Hadler has had it with insurance companies and even the AMA Guides for that matter. He once argued that attempts to adhere to the AMA Guides to quantify impairment were, in his opinion, ‘an unappealing, if not Orwellian, exercise, and not just for musculoskeletal diseases but for all diseases.’ “(WCxKit)
 
 
Read more of Kobayashi’s research and opinion by following the link above. She concludes, “Here, in our world of workers’ compensation, we can’t deny the fact that workers’ compensation medical costs are soaring. Whether you’re an injured worker, attorney, judge, or claims adjuster, we need to make the right choices about medical care, to educate ourselves, and to stop being conditioned into believing that medical treatment can always help/save us.”
 
 
The material above is contributed by Lexis Nexis Workers Compensation Law Community.
 
 
Author Rebecca Shafer, JD, President of Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is a national expert in the field of workers compensation. She is a writer, speaker, and website publisher. Her expertise is working with employers to reduce workers compensation costs, and her clients include airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality, and manufacturing. She is the author of the #1 selling book on cost containment, Manage Your Workers Compensation: Reduce Costs 20-50% www.WCManual.com. Contact: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.
 

ABC's of WORK COMP COST REDUCTION Book:  www.WCManual.com
 
WORK COMP CALCULATOR:  www.LowerWC.com/calculator.php

 
Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.
 
©2011 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact

Workplace Deaths and Disfigurement Issues in Workers Compensation Cases

 

 Work Comp Roundup  continues to provide a compendium of legal updates representing many states.

  

Disfigurement Awards in Workers Comp Cases
Closely related to awards provided under a jurisdiction's schedule benefits statute is the provision for some sort of compensation related to disfigurement. As indicated in Chapter 88, most states specifically authorize such awards. The chapter has been revised to include recent cases and commentary on this issue. (WCxKit) There continues to be a division of authority as to whether an award can be made both for loss of a member and for disfigurement resulting from the same loss. Disfigurement awards are not limited to scarification. A Delaware court, for example, has allowed a disfigurement award for varicose veins [see Martinez v. General Metalcraft, Inc., 919 A.2d 561, 2007 Del. LEXIS 64 (2007), See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law  Ch. 88, § 88.02 n14.1].
 
 
Workplace Deaths
Fatal Injuries Sustained Prior to Employment Contract Found Not Compensable
An Arkansas court reversed a decision that had granted death benefits to the dependents of a purported employee who was killed on what would have been his first day of work as he accompanied his purported employer to a job site while the two discussed the job, its pay, and requirements. The purported employer’s statement that he would have hired the worker had the accident not occurred did not create an employment relationship between the two. See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law, Scroggins v. Glen Roberts Excavation, 2010 Ark. App. LEXIS 88 (2010); Ch. 65,[2] n12.2] (WCxKit)
 
Death Benefits Awarded Following Firefighters Death after Running Wind Sprints
In Long v. City of Charlotte, 2010 N.C. App. LEXIS 678 (Apr. 20, 2010), the Court of Appeals of North Carolina upheld a decision by the states Industrial Commission that had awarded death benefits to dependents of a 44-year-old firefighter who died after running wind sprints during a physical exercise period. See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law, Ch. 43, [1][b] n42]
 
 
Effect of Successive or Concurrent Injuries on Maximum Award
Generally, as to maximum weekly benefits, combined weekly benefits for the two injuries should never be higher than the weekly maximum for total disability. As to maximum-number-of-weeks limits, when the two injuries each have such a limit, most courts still hold that the two periods of time may be placed end to end See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law, [Ch. 92].
 
 
Employee Tort Claim Against Employer and Coworker for Improper Dissemination of Medical Information Not Barred by Exclusivity
Finding that an employee's "injuries" resulting from improper dissemination of employee's HIV status did not arise out of her employment, a Tennessee court recently held the employee's tort action against her employer, a manager, and a coworker were outside the workers' compensation law and not barred by exclusivity [Doe v. Walgreens Co., 2010 Tenn. App. LEXIS 734 (Nov. 24, 2010)]. ), See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law, [Ch. 100, § 100.04 n16.1].
 
 
North Dakota Supreme Court Allows Subpoena of Bank Records to Stand in Fraud Case
A North Dakota court has allowed information about an injured worker's earnings to be obtained pursuant to a subpoena of bank records. In State v. Hammer, 2010 ND 152, 787 N.W.2d 716 (2010), the Supreme Court of North Dakota affirmed a decision of a state district court that denied a workers' compensation claimant's motion to suppress bank records obtained through administrative subpoena duces tecum in a workers' compensation fraud case. The records had been sought to show that the claimant earned, but did not report, income through a mobile home repair business and in selling scrap metal. Based on the unreported earnings, the Workforce Safety & Insurance contended it had paid $ 24,132.85 in excess benefits. Issuance of the subpoena was within the investigatory powers of WSI. See –Larson's Workers Compensation Law [Ch. 39, § 39.03 n19.1]
 
 
2010 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. This material is excerpted from Larson’s Workers Compensation Law. Reprinted with permission.
 
Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.
 
©2011 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

North Dakota Supreme Court Allows Subpoena of Bank Records in Fraud Case

A North Dakota court allowed information about an injured worker's earnings to be obtained pursuant to a subpoena of bank records.
 

In State v. Hammer
, 2010 ND 152, 787 N.W.2d 716 (2010), the Supreme Court of North Dakota affirmed a decision of a state district court that denied a workers compensation claimant's motion to suppress bank records obtained through administrative subpoena duces tecum in a workers compensation fraud case.
 
 
The records had been sought to show that the claimant earned, but did not report, income through a mobile home repair business and in selling scrap metal. Based on the unreported earnings, the Workforce Safety & Insurance contended it had paid $24,132.85 in excess benefits. Issuance of the subpoena was within the investigatory powers of WSI. Larson's Workers Compensation Law See Ch. 39
 
 
Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risks Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. See www.LowerWC.com for more information. Contact: Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

 
Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.
 
©2011 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact Info@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com.

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