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National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (9/28/2015)

OSHA Extends Comment Period for Proposed Rule on Employer Record Keeping . NIOSH Posts 2014 Mid-Year Worker Fatality Report for Oil and Gas Industry . AFL-CIO Releases 2015 Edition of Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect . Museum of Tort Law, Which Includes Workers Comp Exhibit, Now Open to...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (10/5/2015)

NCCI Posts Sept. 2015 Quarterly Economics Briefing Newsletter . ProPublica Wins Journalism Award for ‘Insult to Injury’ Workers’ Comp Series . EEOC Declares Workers Comp Guidelines Don’t Supersede ADA . AL: NCCI Explains 8.2 Percent Decrease in Loss Cost Filing . CA...

Oklahoma: Multiple Injury Trust Liability Hinges on Prior Adjudication of Disability

Where a claimant, who had no previously adjudicated injury, sustained a work-related injury in 2009, and a trial court determined that as a result of the 2009 incident the claimant had sustained 24 percent PPD to her back and five percent PPD for psychological overlay, a simultaneous finding by the trial...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (10/26/2015)

Senator Sanders, Dem Lawmakers Warn Labor Secretary Perez About Opt Outs . CEPR Examines Cuts in Workers Comp and Rising SSDI Payments . NCCI Announces New President and CEO William E. Donnell . Obama Announces Guidelines for Addressing Prescription Drug Abuse, Heroin Use . CDC Drafts Guideline...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (11/9/2015)

A.M. Best: U.S. Workers Comp Performance Improves Despite Rate Softening . Travelers, Hartford, AIG Rank as Top Three Workers Comp Insurers in 2014 . Shifting Trends of Prescription Opioids and Heroin Abuse in the US . AK: WCB Approves Changes to Workers Comp Fee Schedule . CA: Federal Judge...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (11/16/2015)

Experts Predict Shrinking of Workers Comp, Blurring of Healthcare/WC Systems . CEOs of On Demand Companies Call for Worker Safety Net, Work Protections, Benefits . Domestic Worker Advocates Push New Initiatives for On-Demand Workers . CDC Posts Factors Associated With Poor Control of 9/11-Related...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (11/23/2015)

WCRI: Medical Prices Lower, Grew Slower in States With Medical Fee Schedules . OSHA Seeks Public Comment on Safety & Health Program Management Guidelines . US Dept. of Labor Proposes Rule to Update Implementation of EEOICPA . Documentary Film Made of Temp Worker Killed in Tragic Accident...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (12/7/2015)

NCCI Analyzes State Differences in Diagnosis, Treatment of Joint Injuries . Businesses Consider Purchase of Active Shooter Insurance . Study Finds News Media Focuses on Criminal, Not Preventative Aspects of Opioid Abuse . CA: DWC Posts Changes to OMFS (Physician Services/Non-Physician Practitioner...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (1/11/2016)

Doctor’s Union Challenges Medical Management Companies, Outsourcing . US DOL Reports US Mining Deaths Dropped to New Lows in 2015 . AIG Invests in Wearable Devices to Promote Workplace Safety . 91 Percent of Patients Overdosing on Opioids Continued to Get Painkiller Prescriptions . ...

Workers’ Comp Agency Declares Oklahoma Opt-Out Statute Unconstitutional

The Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Commission’s decision may ultimately have set up a collision between ERISA preemption and the Oklahoma State Constitution By Michael C. Duff, Assoc. Dean of Student Programs and External Relations, and Centennial Distinguished Professor of Law, University...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (2/29/2016)

Sedgwick Institute Names Workers Comp Expert Richard Victor as Senior Fellow . NIOSH Examines Latest Advances in Assessing Occupational Exposure Limits . JPMorgan Chase Study Examines Impact of “Online Platform Economy” . AK: DWC Emergency Regulations Made Permanent Eff. 3/11/2016...

Oklahoma: 180-Day Employment Rule for Cumulative Trauma Injuries Is Unconstitutional

The Supreme Court of Oklahoma held that a provision in Okla. Stat. tit. 85A, § 2(14) that creates a condition precedent to the filing of a cumulative trauma claim—that the claimant must have completed 180 days of continuous active employment with the employer—is unconstitutional, since...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (3/7/2016)

OSHA Head Unveils Plans for 2016 . Federal Court Upholds Wellness Program, Rejects Lawsuit Filed by EEOC . NAIC Posts Latest Rankings for P&C Insurers Market Share . Risks Inherent With Sharing Economy Posed to Increase 20 Fold+ During Next Decade . ProPublica Workers Comp Investigation...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (3/28/2016)

OSHA Issues Final Rule on Silica Exposure . NAMSAP Proposes Evidence-Based Limits on Opioids for WCMSAs . OSHA Workplace Safety Violation Penalties to Increase 8/1/2016 . Stanford Professor Claims Costs Drop 44 Percent for Companies That Opt Out . HHS Release National Pain Strategy . McCrery...

Oklahoma: Supreme Court Strikes Down Yet Another Provision in State’s Comp Act

In a split (7–2) decision, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma has struck down yet another provision of the state’s controversial 2013 “reform” of its workers’ compensation law. The provision, Okla. Stat. tit. 85A, § 45(C)(5), defers the payment of a permanent partial disability...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (4/18/2016)

Senators Slam Obama Directive for Sick U.S. Nuclear Workers . AK: WCD Posts Director’s Interpretation on Issues Impacting Medical Fee Schedule . AZ: Governor Signs SB 1323 Pro Se Vexatious Litigant . CA: WCAB Chairman Ronnie Caplane to Retire From State Service . CA: Supreme Court Grants...

Oklahoma: Commission May Rule on Specific Constitutional Issues

Oklahoma’s Workers’ Compensation Commission is appropriately empowered to determine whether a provision of the state’s workers’ compensation law [Title 85A] is being constitutionally applied to a particular party in a proceeding before the Commission, held the state’s Supreme...

Workers’ Compensation Opt-Out Laws: No Escape From ERISA Preemption?

In ERISA Congress has created a “lock-box” in which it both carefully defines and limits state exclusions from the statute and aggressively sweeps up through preemption anything that remains. Thus, if an employee welfare benefit plan is not clearly and exactly excluded from ERISA, any state...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (6/6/2016)

CA: Ins. Dept. Announces 10.5 Percent Workers’ Comp Rate Reduction . CA: New Round of Charges Filed Against Medical Providers in WC System . CA: Sen. Mendoza Calls for Study, Investigation of WC Fraud . CA: UnitedHealth Exits ACA Market in California . CO: CDLE Workers Comp Division...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (6/13/2016)

PCI Issues New Report on Medical Cost Shifting From WC Opt Out Systems . PCI Insurers Support Town Hall to Discuss Florida Workers’ Comp System . WCRI Study Finds Large Decreases in Opioids Received by Injured Workers . AZ: Arizona Adopts IC Rules for ODG Drug Formulary Evidence-Based...

National and State-by-State Workers' Comp News Powered by Larson's (6/20/2016)

Labor Official Touts 10th Anniv. of Mine Improvement/New Emergency Response Act . Implant Approved to Help Fight Opioid Dependency . CA: DWC to Enforce Lien Claimants’ Use of Uniform Assigned Name . CA: DWC Announces Temporary Total Disability Rates for 2017 . CA: Columnist: California...

Oklahoma: Parking Lot Injury Covered in Spite of Special Statute’s Language

A divided Supreme Court of Oklahoma held that a university employee sustained injuries arising out of and in the course of her employment when she slipped and fell on ice in a campus parking lot where she had been instructed to park. The majority found that the employee’s actions at the time of...

Oklahoma: Intentional Tort Case May Continue Under “Substantially Certain” Rule

The Supreme Court of Oklahoma held that there were material issues of fact as to whether the decedent’s employer knew that injury or death was substantially certain to result from the task decedent and his coworkers were directed to complete and the conditions in which they were required to work...

Trends to Watch in Workers’ Compensation Law

At the National Workers’ Compensation & Disability Conference last November, Brad Bleakney, a partner with Bleakney & Troiani, and Lora Northen, a Shareholder with Capehart Scatchard, led a seminar on recent trends in workers’ compensation. The following is a Q&A with Brad and...

Bad-Faith Failure to Pay Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Supreme Court of Oklahoma addresses “crafty gamesmanship” We have asked our expert in Oklahoma, Jacque Brawner Dean, Esq., at Jacque Brawner Dean Law, PLLC , about the recent decision in Meeks v. Guarantee Ins. Co . In that case, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma, in a divided decision, held...