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NY - Labor Advocates Say Impairment Guidelines Do Not Need Revisions

By J. Todd Foster (Reporter)
08/17/2017 | 24 | 0 | 0 min read

The New York Workers’ Compensation Alliance has published a study showing that 81% of the 847 injured workers surveyed believe they were not fairly compensated for lost wages. The group of claimants’ attorneys released the survey Monday, about two weeks before the state Workers’ Compensation Board will release new permanency impairment guidelines, aligning schedule loss of use awards with modern medicine to reduce costs. Schedule loss of use injuries involve permanent or partial loss of the use of limbs, as well as vision and hearing loss. The awards are additional cash pa. Read More

IL - Appeals Court Approves Dismissal of Terminated Arbitrators' Lawsuit

By Emily Brill (Reporter)
08/17/2017 | 18 | 0 | min read

A federal appeals court affirmed a lower court's decision to toss a lawsuit that four Illinois workers' compensation arbitrators filed against the state after they lost their jobs in 2011. The lawsuit accused former Gov. Pat Quinn and two advisers of refusing to reappoint Kathleen Hagan, Gilberto Galicia, Joseph Prieto and Richard Peterson because they had sued the state on a previous occasion. They said that refusal amounted to retaliation against them for exercising protected speech.  The district court said that the lawsuit did not amount to protected speech. The U.S. 7th Cir. Read More

NATL. - New EDI Standard Expands Electronic Options for FROI, SROI

By Elaine Goodman (medical/business Reporter)
08/17/2017 | 21 | 0 | min read

An international organization has rolled out updated standards for electronically submitted first report of injury forms, a move that some say may cause short-term headaches but ultimately will provide long-term benefits for those handling workers’ comp claims. The International Association of Industrial Accident Boards and Commissions, or IAIABC, on Tuesday issued Release 3.1 of its EDI Claims Standards. The standards apply to electronically submitted first report of injury forms, or FROI, as well as subsequent report of injury, or SROI, forms. Compared to the previous the claims stan. Read More

FL - Story Probes Florida Law's Impact on Injured Undocumented Workers

08/17/2017 | 25 | 0 | min read

ProPublica and NPR published another joint investigation of the workers' compensation system Wednesday, focusing this report on a Florida law that criminalizes undocumented workers who seek workers' compensation benefits. Passed in 2003, the law makes applying for workers' compensation benefits with an invalid Social Security number a felony. Insurers have since made it standard practice to turn in undocumented workers to the state after injuries rather than paying for benefits.  The law has also allowed the state to charge undocumented workers with felony workers&. Read More

FL - Firefighter Death Benefits to Increase Based on Consumer Price Index

08/17/2017 | 15 | 0 | min read

The Department of Financial Services has proposed an amendment to Rule 69A-64.005 to adjust the firefighter death benefits based on the Consumer Price Index. If requested in writing by Sept. 6 and then deemed necessary by the agency, a rule development workshop will be held at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 15 at the Division of State Fire Marshal, third-floor conference room, Atrium Building, 325 John Knox Road in Tallahassee. The agency did not post the preliminary text of the proposed rule but said it is available by contacting Jason Fryar at 850-413-3647 or by emailing Jason.Fryar@MyFlor. Read More


NATL. - Paduda: Health Care Reform Implications for Workers' Comp, Part 1

By Joe Paduda
08/17/2017 | 15 | 0 | min read

With Congressional efforts to repeal/replace/revise the Affordable Care Act behind us for now, it’s time to consider what all this means for workers’ comp. Joe Paduda First up: Medicaid expansion Currently, 32 states have expanded Medicaid. Expect more states to consider expanding Medicaid as the combination of federal dollars and struggling hospitals makes a compelling case for state adoption. In addition, the Trump administration may well allow states more flexibility in expanding Medicaid, and this will likely lead to more states opting in. For example, Arkansas . Read More

NY - Orthopedic Surgeon Charged With Defrauding System of More Than $14,000

08/17/2017 | 21 | 0 | min read

A Central New York orthopedic surgeon was charged Tuesday with running a scheme to defraud the workers’ compensation system, state Workers’ Compensation Fraud Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott said. Dr. Gregory B. Shankman, 69, of Clinton, is accused of defrauding the system of more than $14,000 by certifying he was at claimant medical exams at his Utica office when he was actually traveling to western New York, out of state and out of the country. He is charged with scheme to defraud in the first degree, two counts of grand larceny in the third degree and two counts of wor. Read More

Sulivan On Comp

CA - Fraud Fighters to Convene for Two-Day Conference

08/17/2017 | 26 | 0 | 0 min read

The Employers’ Fraud Task Force is hosting “The Big 2017 Fraud Fighting Conference” on Aug. 24-25 at the Pala Resort and Casino in northern San Diego County. George Parisotto The conference is being presented in partnership with the San Bernardino District Attorney’s Office, California Society of Industrial Medicine and Surgery, and Floyd, Skeren & Kelly LLP. On the first day of the conference, George Parisotto, acting administrative director of the California Division of Workers’ Compensation, will give a keynote address on the DWC’s new fraud unit. Read More

CA - Chula Vista Restaurant Faces $274,000 Penalty for Comp, Wage Violations

08/17/2017 | 19 | 0 | min read

California Labor Commissioner Julie A. Su fined a Chula Vista restaurant more than $110,000 for workers’ compensation and wage violations, and ordered the company to pay $164,000 in back wages to six workers. Commissioner Julie Su The commissioner’s office, also known as the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, said Dorantes Inc. paid the six workers $50 per day for shifts that were typically nine hours long between June 2014 and February 2017. Dorantes, which operated as La Querencia, also allegedly failed to allow the workers to take meal and rest breaks. The investigati. Read More

MT - Labor Commissioner Resigns to Join Private Law Firm

08/17/2017 | 17 | 0 | min read

Pam Bucy, commissioner of the Montana Department of Labor & Industry, is resigning effective Sept. 7 after more than four years on the job. Commissioner Pam Bucy Bucy is leaving her position to join a private law firm in Helena, KRTV reported. Gov. Steve Bullock announced her departure on Tuesday. The governor has yet to name a replacement. Bullock appointed Bucy to serve as commissioner in January 2013. During Bucy’s tenure, the state has seen a steady decrease in workplace injuries, the sixth fastest wage growth in the nation and the greatest number of Montanans employed at an. Read More

IL - Carrier Had Duty to Defend Property Owner From Suit by Contractor's Injured Employee

By WorkCompCentral
08/17/2017 | 16 | 0 | min read

The Illinois Appellate Court ruled that a contractor’s general liability insurance carrier had a duty to defend a property owner from a negligence action filed by the contractor’s injured employee. Case: Pekin Insurance Co. v. Lexington Station, No. 1-16-3284, 08/14/2017, published. Facts and procedural history: In September 2014, Lexington Station entered into a contract with ACC Inc. to provide carpentry work for the development of a property in Morton Grove. The contract provided that ACC was an independent contractor. The terms of the contract required ACC to supply and ins. Read More

PA - Invalidation of IRE Process Required Reversal of Modification in Worker's Status

By WorkCompCentral
08/17/2017 | 21 | 0 | min read

The Commonwealth Court ruled that a worker whose case was pending at the time the Supreme Court struck down the state’s impairment rating evaluation process as unconstitutional was entitled to a reversal of a judge’s order authorizing a change in her disability status, pursuant to that process. Case: Thompson v. WCAB (Excelon Corp.), No. 1227 C.D. 2016, 08/16/2017, published. Facts: Debra Thompson sustained an on-the-job injury in 1998 while working for the Excelon Corp. She received total disability benefits from Oct. 20, 1998, through Nov. 2, 1999. Thompson then began coll. Read More

OH - Court Upholds Finding of Payroll Misclassification by Construction Co.

By WorkCompCentral
08/17/2017 | 17 | 0 | min read

A divided Ohio appellate court upheld a determination that a construction company had misclassified a substantial number of its employees and underreported its payroll by nearly $1 million. Case: BNA Construction v. Director of the State of Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, No. 16AP-317, 08/15/2017, published. Facts: The Office of Unemployment Compensation at the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services conducted an employment audit of BNA Construction in 2013. After a preliminary review of the records, the auditor informed BNA that she would be reclassifying all of the com. Read More

OK - Liotta Named Chairman of Workers' Compensation Commission

08/17/2017 | 45 | 0 | min read

Gov. Mary Fallin has named Workers’ Compensation Commissioner Mark Liotta, a former state representative from the Tulsa area, to chair the commission and succeed Robert Gilliland. Mark Liotta Liotta, who has served two years of a six-year term on the commission, will become chairman on Aug. 26. “I am fortunate to have the governor’s confidence, and I intend to continue the commission in the direction we have taken over the last two years,” Liotta said in a press release. “Our goal is to provide unbiased, nonpolitical decisions based solely on the law and the . Read More

WY - Supreme Court Upholds Denial of Worker's Claim for Additional TTD Benefits

By WorkCompCentral
08/17/2017 | 15 | 0 | min read

The Wyoming Supreme Court upheld the denial of a worker’s claim for additional temporary total disability benefits, finding the evidence supported a conclusion that his disability was caused by a pre-existing degenerative condition as opposed to his prior industrial accident. Case: Matter of the Workers’ Compensation Claim of Kebschull v. State, No. S-17-0001, 08/15/2017, published. Facts: William Kebschull suffered a workplace injury to his back in 2008, but he had a history of complaints that predated this incident. His first documented complaint was in 1999, when he told. Read More

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Press - CompCalc Windows 10 Release Date Announced!!

08/01/2017 | 1882 | 0 | min read

Sacramento, Ca (August 1, 2017) --The Law Office of Richard Montarbo ( announced that the CompCalc for Windows 10 users will be available for FREE TRIAL DOWNLOAD at the Windows Store beginning August 1, 2017. The CompCalc Windows rounds out the CompCalc family of California Workers&r. Read More