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North Carolina Workers’ Comp Defense Blog

 

Where Does a Third Party “Stand” on Liens?

Workers’ Compensation Liens and Standing Dion v. William Robert Batten, Sr. (8/2/16) Facts and Procedural History: Plaintiff was employed by Neuwirth as a servicing agent.  In the course and scope of his employment with Neuwirth, he was involved in a car accident.  William Batten failed to stop at a red light and ran into plaintiff.  […]

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Case Law Update: Rainey v. City of Charlotte

Attorney Saves Client from Paying Benefits Not Owed

Rainey v. City of Charlotte (5/17/16) This case the North Carolina Court of Appeals analyzed N.C. Gen. Stat. §97-58 and the statutory time limit to file an occupational disease. The Court dismissed an injured worker’s claim based on plaintiff’s failure to comply with the time requirements of the statute based on the plaintiff’s own admissions. Facts […]

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Case Law Update: Barnette v. Lowes

Attorney Keeps Employer from Paying Undeserved Benefits

Barnette v. Lowes (4/19/16) The North Carolina Court of Appeals overturned a Deputy Commissioner and the Full Commission Opinion and Award denying the plaintiff’s claim. The Court found that an “accident” occurred where plaintiff was “engaged in his normal work duty…” at the time of alleged injury, but there was an interruption in the normal work routine […]

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Claims Management versus Settlement: Cost Containment Strategies for the End of the Claim (Part 10 of 10)

This final segment in this “Cost Containment Strategies” Blog series addresses strategies for the end of the worker’s compensation claim.   The considerations at this point in the claim are typically whether to keep the claim open and manage it accordingly or whether to settle out the claim- either on a “clincher agreement” or to pay […]

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Navigating the Return to Work Process in North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Claims: Cost Containment Strategies for the Middle of the Claim (Part 9 of 10)

One of the most effective cost containment strategies for the middle of a workers’ compensation claim is offering the claimant a suitable return to work with the employer of injury or a prospective new employer through vocational rehabilitation.  This leads us to one of the biggest advantages for employers, administrators and insurance carriers in the […]

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Cost Containment: Tips and Tricks for Utilizing Social Media for Investigating and Defending Workers’ Compensation Claims (Part 8 of 10)

Social Media presents an important- and free – tool for investigating and defending against workers’ compensation claims when used properly. Today’s Social Media, which includes, but is not limited to, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Twitter, Blogs- allows previously unprecedented access to the lives, actions and activities of workers’ compensation claimants. Through access to Social Media, employers/claims […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of the Workers’ Compensation Claim: Rule 607(a) Records Request and Discovery (Part 7 of 10)

This segment in the Cost Containment Strategies Blog Series will focus on the fourth initial investigation cost containment strategy- utilizing Rule 607(a) of the Workers’ Compensation Rules of the North Carolina Industrial Commission and Discovery. These tools help secure additional information about the following: The claimant’s relevant pre-existing medical history/condition; The alleged injury or condition […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of the Workers’ Compensation Claim: Medical Records/Medical Information (Part 6 of 10)

This segment in the Cost Containment Strategies Blog Series will focus on the third initial investigation cost containment strategy- tips for securing relevant Medical Records/Medical Information. Medical Records/Medical Information Pursuant to the June 26, 2011, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Legislative Reform, defendants are entitled to have reasonable access to all relevant medical information.  N.C.G.S. § […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of the Workers’ Compensation Claim: Recorded Statement (Part 5 of 10)

This segment in the Cost Containment Strategies Blog Series will focus on the second initial investigation cost containment strategy – considerations for the Recorded Statement of the claimant. Recorded Statement A Recorded Statement provides a great tool to learn additional information about the claimant’s educational and work background; relevant pre-existing medical conditions; whether the claimant […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of the Workers’ Compensation Claim: Background Investigation (Part 4 of 10)

This segment in the Cost Containment Strategies Blog Series will focus on the first initial investigation cost containment strategy- background investigation for examining the alleged accident and the claimant. Background Investigation- Alleged Accident The employer/claims adjuster should investigate the background of the alleged accident/incident leading to the workers’ compensation claim.  Examples of questions to ask […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of the Workers’ Compensation Claim: Roadmap For Best Practices for Initial Investigation (Part 3 of 10)

When a workers’ compensation claim is first reported, the employer/claims adjuster wants to be proactive and formulate a strategic plan for investigation to determine whether the claim is compensable, and if so, what benefits are owed.  Again, timing is key. Start at the beginning- review the existing information and documentation about the alleged incident to […]

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Mica Worthy Obtained Favorable Opinion & Award from IC in Back Injury Claim

Injury Claim Form for Workers' Comp Defense

Mica Nguyen Worthy (Charlotte) recently obtained a favorable Opinion and Award from the Industrial Commission wherein a claimant alleged he sustained an injury by accident or specific traumatic incident to his back while working. Plaintiff received medical treatment without prejudice and his alleged back condition resolved allowing him to work an additional 8 months for […]

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Case Summary: Joint Employment Doctrine

NC Workers Comp Law Updates

Whicker v. Compass Group USA, Inc./Crothall Services Group, Employer; Self-Insured (Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc., Administrator); and Novant Health, Inc., Alleged Joint Employer, Self-Insured, Defendants. NC Court of Appeals Opinion filed April 5, 2016. This is a case addressing the Joint Employment doctrine.  The Court of Appeals analyzed each element of the doctrine that must be […]

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Cost Containment Strategies for the Beginning of North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Claims – The Misrepresentation Defense (Part 2 of 10)

When contemplating cost containment strategies for workers’ compensation claims, it is important to start at the beginning, as timing is vital.  To provide employers and claims adjusters with a comprehensive discussion of cost containment strategies, this Blog Post will start at the very beginning – before there is even a workers’ compensation claim. As part […]

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Blog Series: Cost Containment Strategies for Defense of North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Claims (Part 1 of 10)

Workers’ compensation claims can be expensive endeavors for employers, administrators and insurance companies.  The purpose of this Blog Series is to educate employers and claims adjusters on cost containment strategies available during each phase of investigating and managing a workers’ compensation claim.  The goal of this Blog Series is to help employers and claims adjusters […]

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