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Employers Unlikely to Avoid Liability But Can Mitigate Damages

A 46-year-old mechanic allegedly reinjured a shoulder he had previously and chronically dislocated after injuries unrelated to his current job. After the unwitnessed accident (with a bizarre and illogical history), he was taken by ambulance from his work location to a nearby hospital. When he arrived, he reported that his shoulder had relocated by itself. He went home, and he returned to work the next day. He continued working until he was ready to have surgery that his doctor had recommended prior to the seemingly fabricated work accident. We were unable to disprove that the claimant was injured at work, so the case was established and payments were made for his medical expenses and lost time from work. When he reached maximum medical improvement, he sought an award for permanent impairment. He further sought to ignore his prior injuries and moneys he received for them.

Asserted Value (Dollar amounts have been rounded to avoid case identification.)

The claimant alleged he was entitled to an award of approximately $60,000.00.

Actions Taken

  1. We rejected the proposed compromise between the attending and examining physicians’ opinions regarding permanency.
  2. We took the deposition testimony of both physicians and showed that the claimant’s attending physician failed to consider the prior injuries and permanent impairment caused by them.
  3. Then, we filed a Written Summation of the testimony and asked the Board to award no more than $15,000.00.
  4. Ultimately, we received a Decision awarding less than $15,000.00.

Result

We resolved the case for less than $15,000.00 in 10 months, saving the client more than $45,000.00.

NOTE: This post is a general overview of a WC claim The Law Studio of Nance L. Schick defended. It is not legal advice, and there is certainly no guarantee that any of the actions detailed above will generate a similar or specific result. Past success is never a guarantee of a future outcome. If you require information or advice applied to your unique situation, please make an appointment to discuss it with an attorney. Don’t rely solely on what you read on the Internet.

Nance L. Schick, Esq. is a mediator, and conflict resolution coach based in New York City, where she works with creative professionals, entrepreneurs, human resources professionals, labor managers, risk managers, and executives to generate results beyond the boundaries of their imaginations. She is committed to creating a unified human race by empowering people to have lives they forgot were possible.