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CA: WCAB Issues En Banc on WPI and Formal PD Rating Instructions

Blackledge v. Bank of America (en banc, 6/3/2010) The Appeals Board held that, in the context of determining whole person impairments (WPI) and issuing formal permanent disability rating instructions, the respective roles of the physician, WCJ, and rater are as follows: (1) the physician assesses...

Getting a Grip on Conditions for Use of the Grip Loss Metric in the AMA Guides Fifth Edition

Lexis.com subscribers can link to the cases cited below. The AMA Guides generally disfavors grip loss as a measurement for rating a whole person impairment (WPI). (See AMA Guides Fifth Edition, page 508.) However, a series of recent WCAB panel decisions indicate that there may be circumstances when...

Getting a Grip on Conditions for Use of the Grip Loss Metric in the AMA Guides Fifth Edition

Lexis.com subscribers can link to the cases cited below. The AMA Guides generally disfavors grip loss as a measurement for rating a whole person impairment (WPI). (See AMA Guides Fifth Edition, page 508.) However, a series of recent WCAB panel decisions indicate that there may be circumstances when...

Getting a Grip on the AMA Guides

Lexis.com subscribers can link to the cases cited below. Subsequent to the passage of SB 899 in California, permanent disability is determined by using the American Medical Association’s Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment , Fifth Edition (AMA Guides). The AMA Guides are very specific...

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...

California: Presenting Evidence of the Vocational Expert Post SB 863

Rebuttal of an injured worker’s “strict” permanent disability rating has consistently been one of the hottest topics in recent case law. See Milpitas v. WCAB (Guzman) (2010) 75 Cal. Comp. Cases 837 (lexis.com), 75 Cal. Comp. Cases 837 (Lexis Advance). Although Guzman dealt with a rebuttal...

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...

California: How Physicians Can Provide the Most Accurate WPI Rating Under the AMA Guides

In Ramirez v. Space Lok, Inc., 2015 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. LEXIS 9 (lexis.com), 2015 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. LEXIS 9 (Lexis Advance), the WCAB rescinded the WCJ’s finding that the applicant, a machine operator, incurred 36 percent permanent disability as a result of a 7/23/2012 industrial injury to...