California Applicants' Attorneys Association Announces 2011-12 leadership team, Priorities for coming year

SACRAMENTO, CA - The California Applicants’ Attorneys Association (CAAA), whose members represent Californians injured on the job, today announced that it has installed a new president and team of officers for the coming year. S. Bradley Chalk , founder and principal of the Chalk Law Office in...

Intoxication Defense Fails Despite "Presumptive Positive" Blood Test: Cal. Comp. Cases December Advanced Postings (12/15/2011)

Featured Case of the Week: Intoxication Defense Fails Despite "Presumptive Positive" Blood Test Beyette's Tree Care, Uninsured, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Bart James Johnson , Respondents , 2011 Cal. Wrk. Comp. LEXIS 187 Injury AOE/COE –Intoxication—WCAB...

California: By the Numbers

What was the impact of the adoption of an AMA-based permanent disability rating schedule in California? That was the question addressed in a significant new study by Frank Neuhauser, Executive Director of the UC Berkeley based Center for the Study of Social Insurance. My last post briefly covered...

Catching Up on Some Zs in California – Sleep Disorders

By Robert G. Rassp, Esq. Whole person impairment ratings for sleep disorders in Table 13-4, and the instructions for use on page 317 of the AMA Guides Fifth Edition have created conflicting WCAB panel decisions on whether a sleep disorder can exist as a stand-alone WPI rating or if it is limited to...

Catching Up on Some Zs in California – Sleep Disorders

By Robert G. Rassp, Esq. Whole person impairment ratings for sleep disorders in Table 13-4, and the instructions for use on page 317 of the AMA Guides Fifth Edition have created conflicting WCAB panel decisions on whether a sleep disorder can exist as a stand-alone WPI rating or if it is limited to...

California: Vocational Rehabilitation Experts

By Colleen S. Casey Copyright © 2012. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. The decision in Ogilvie v. WCAB (Ogilvie III) (2011) 76 CCC 624 created an increasing demand for the expertise of vocational rehabilitation (VR) experts. Parties continually struggle with how to best present...

California: Vocational Rehabilitation Experts

By Colleen S. Casey Copyright © 2012. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission. The decision in Ogilvie v. WCAB (Ogilvie III) (2011) 76 CCC 624 created an increasing demand for the expertise of vocational rehabilitation (VR) experts. Parties continually struggle with how to best present...

Wife Entitled to Reasonable Value of Home Health Care Services for Injured Husband: Cal. Comp. Cases June Advanced Postings (6/14/12)

Here’s the third batch of advanced postings for the June 2012 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com subscribers can link to the cases to read the complete headnotes and summaries. © Copyright 2012 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. Allgreen Landscape, Everest National Insurance Company...

California: Was That Just a Reverse Almaraz/Guzman That Flew By?

As a result of the February 3, 2009, en banc decision in Almaraz v. Environmental Recovery Services/Guzman v. Milpitas Unified School District (2009) 74 Cal. Comp. Cases 201 (Appeals Board en banc), the September 3, 2009 decision after reconsideration in Almaraz/Guzman ( Almaraz v. Environmental Recovery...

California: Paradigm Shift?

The workers' comp community is abuzz with rumors about the impending comprehensive comp reform bill. I've not yet seen the bill (which could still be revised before it is introduced in print in the next week or so). But based on the summary in Workcompcentral.com that ran yesterday, if...

California: Paradigm Shift?

The workers' comp community is abuzz with rumors about the impending comprehensive comp reform bill. I've not yet seen the bill (which could still be revised before it is introduced in print in the next week or so). But based on the summary in Workcompcentral.com that ran yesterday, if the...

California: Rating Impairments That Are Missing From the AMA Guides

Attention Lexis Online Subscribers: Case citations link to lexis.com. Bracketed case citations link to Lexis Advance. In the recent WCAB panel decision of Cannon v. City of Sacramento, (2012) 2012 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. LEXIS 615 [ 2012 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. LEXIS 615 ], the WCAB Commissioners analyzed...

Air Ambulance En Banc Decision Denied Writ of Review: Cal. Comp. Cases September Advanced Postings (9/11/2013)

The following are advanced postings for the September 2013 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the case to read the complete headnotes and summaries. © Copyright 2013 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. Zenith Insurance Company, insurer for Couto...

SSA Finding of Disability Used to Apply Conclusive Presumption of Dependency: Cal. Comp. Cases October Advanced Postings (10/4/2013)

Here’s the second batch of advanced postings for the October 2013 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the case to read the complete headnotes and summaries. © Copyright 2013 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. City and County of San Francisco...

FEHA Settlement Didn’t Preclude TTD Award: Cal. Comp. Cases November Advanced Postings (10/22/2013)

Here’s the first batch of advanced postings for the November 2013 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the case to read the complete headnotes and summaries . © Copyright 2013 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. Zurich North America, insurer...

Are Chronic Pain Syndromes and Drug Dependency Ratable Under the AMA Guides? If So, How?

By Robert G. Rassp, Esq. © Copyright 2014. Excerpted from The Lawyer’s Guide to the AMA Guides and California Workers’ Compensation , 2014 Edition (LexisNexis). Reminder to Calif. Workers' Compensation Judges: You have access to this publication on Lexis Advance. References...

California Workers' Comp Case Roundup (2/9/2014)

CALIFORNIA COMPENSATION CASES Vol. 79 No. 1 January 2014 A Report of En Banc and Significant Panel Decisions of the WCAB and Selected Court Opinions of Related Interest, With a Digest of WCAB Decisions Denied Judicial Review CONTENTS OF THIS ISSUE © Copyright 2014 LexisNexis. All rights...

Employer 90 Percent at Fault for Applicant’s Burn Injuries: Cal. Comp. Cases April Advanced Postings (4/16/2014)

Here’s the fourth batch of advanced postings for the April 2014 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the case to read the complete headnotes and summaries . © Copyright 2014 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. Illinois Midwest Insurance Agency...

Strict AMA Guides WPI of Zero Percent Rebutted in Ortho/Psyche Case: Cal. Comp. Cases August Advanced Postings (8/20/2014)

Here are the second and third batch of advanced postings for the August 2014 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases. Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the case to read the complete headnotes and summaries. © Copyright 2014 LexisNexis. All rights reserved. Bank of America, PSI, adjusted...

California: Combined Values Chart – Guide or Mandate?

The Combined Values Chart (CVC) is included in the 2005 Permanent Disability Rating Schedule (PDRS) as the tool for parties to use to add impairments. The form of mathematics is a bit odd. Under the CVC, 30 + 20 = 44. And 80 + 30 = 86. Some have wondered if this was part of the new “core curriculum”...

California: Elements for Rebuttal of a Strict Rating of the AMA Guides

One of the primary goals and foundation of the workers’ compensation system is to provide adequate medical treatment for injured workers, enabling them to promptly return to their usual and customary jobs. Hence, it is not unusual for a worker to be injured, receive appropriate medical treatment...

California: The Cannon Case: Permanent Objective Medical Diagnosis

Throughout the years, since the enactment of SB 899, all of the guidebooks have directed physicians and attorneys to focus on permanent objective medical conditions in order to determine whether that condition is ratable under the AMA Guides . Some people interpret the AMA Guides to stand for the proposition...

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome as a Central Nervous System Disorder

A case study from California A case handled by this author involved the diagnosis of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) from a lower extremity industrial injury. The WCAB upheld a trial judge’s decision that a WPI rating can exceed the maximum value of an amputation and the medical reporting...