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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    9

    Red face Slip and Fall from a Ladder

    A little about what happened. I was working on a job site and we were required to wear the blue plastic boot covers, a hair net, a lab coat, safety harness, safety glasses along with a hard hat.
    Working on a 10 foot step ladder I was descending on the ladder to get some material and slipped and fell from the 3rd step to the concrete floor. Not realizing at the time I was injured, I finished working till the end of the work day. The next day I was unable to put pressure on my leg, called the company and was directed to go to the local care center. They did not do anything else except physical therapy. This did nothing and was a waste of time. I once again contacted my employer and was told to go to a orthopedic doctor, which I did. He sent me for a MRI, the results shown a torn medicis and was informed it would require surgery. I had the surgery done, followed by physical therapy. 11 weeks after surgery I returned to work, still with a bit of pain, and with time the pain decreased.
    My question is regarding a settlement for pain and suffering etc. Is there normally a settlement offered ? Is there a lawyer required ? What could I expect as a decent settlement ? If I obtain a settlement will it affect my future employment with this employer ?
    I am not looking to get rich. I was recently laid off from this employer. I do not know if this accident was a direct cause of the layoff or rather part due to the economy.
    Thank you in advance.....
    Last edited by HurtinJersey; 02-18-2009 at 06:29 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    9,076

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    no pain and suffering in comp--it's "no fault"
    only additional benefits when there is permanent functional loss which is likely after surgery
    no lawyer required to receive benefits
    need a rating to determine value of future benefits
    cannot speculate on an unknown person/employer.
    for more information
    http://lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/wc/...fit_index.html

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    PA, but worked in NJ
    Posts
    822

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Dear Hurt in Jersey, I can answer your questions


    First it is very common to injury self at work, but not have any symptoms till the next day. Dont let this worry you as it happens all the time and is just in the nature of the injury.

    I assume you were receiving TTD while you were unable to do any of your job duties as well as any sedentary work that may have been made available, such as the time you needed to recover from surgery of the knee ??? Is that what this means?? ( "torn medicis")???

    There is no compensation for any pain and suffering you may have had or will experience in the future. After you are released from care and deemed MMI or stationary, you will then be examined by Drs these Drs are reckonised as experts by WC court,(one for your lawyer, and one for the WC carrier. However you do have the option to accept the WC carriers ratings and go with that, but it is typically much lower than what you may have gotten with the right dr report and rating.)

    Once the court is convinced your condition is stable and stationary the Judge will take medical testimony in the form of reports which is mentioned above and make a determination on your impairment this rating will determine the payment amount and how you will be paid. Unless you reach an agreement before this happens. Judges always have final say in matter!!

    If you choose to not seek legal help which is a possibility, as well as a good idea, in simple injury cases like this, but we really cant tell until you are made aware of the WC evaluating Dr (expert testimony) 's rating. You may need a lawyer if you feel you have not received all medical , as well as TTD due to you under the rules, or as mentioned if the WC DR rates you too low for your liking.

    If you fully recover with some pain, you are looking at 5-10% partial disability or a few 1000's $ Well you can tell if this is going to effect your future by their attitude now. Under the law it should have no impact, but in the real world you are not guaranteed a job so they can always find a way to fire you if that's what they want.

    Its hard to say with the limited info and you have your "feelers on the ground" so you may have feelings about this that I am unaware of. The economy is bad and you must have seen work slowing down if so getting laid off now may be a blessing as now you can recover.

    Once you determine if you will hire a lawyer then we can discuss what you can expect, or if you choose to tackle alone which may save some face with your employer if they are hostile.

    Talk soon
    BUG

    To understand how the full NJWC system works please read thread titled "Understanding New Jersey WC" in this thread you will find a step by step detailed article on how this works, and this may help you understand your options better. Feel free to ask any detailed question. Good luck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Thank You for your answers to my questions.... Looks like I have to decide if If using a lawyer is the way to go.... I will have to check with a lawyer and see if this is worth going forward with.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    What is the limit on time to start in filing for this case?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    New Oxford, Pa. USA
    Posts
    430

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Quote Quoting HurtinJersey View Post
    Thank You for your answers to my questions.... Looks like I have to decide if If using a lawyer is the way to go.... I will have to check with a lawyer and see if this is worth going forward with.
    Dear hurtinJersey,

    I'm an old Jersey girl myself, I did have one w/c case @17 yrs ago. Once you get a lawyer and make a settlement don't forget you have 2 years to reopen the case for further settlement if your injury keeps flairing up, so it is not just one time in court you can go again within 2 years and request help or medical and another settlement if you are continuing to have problems with your injury.

    Hope this helps,
    Nipper

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    PA, but worked in NJ
    Posts
    822

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Hi Hurt in Jersey, I'm not sure I understand your question "" What is the limit on time to start in filing for this case? "" as if I understood your 1st post in this thread you had been receiving TTD as well as medical care which included a surgery, so in reality this has already begun and there is no need to "start" in filing anything????

    It is true that you have 2 years to reopen this( clock starts either at MMI or when settlement is made), I am leaning towards when a settlement is made and accepted as the case is considered settled at that point. I'm sorry I really cant be sure when the clock starts on the 2yr rule. However to reopen this is much more difficult than one may believe at first. Because it will take a WC Dr to reopen again, which is basically how you got it opened in the first place. In order to have this reopened the WC Dr must see or have a strong reason to believe that medical corrective care will significantly improve your condition. To receive additional settlement your rating of impairment must be more than what is determined when you see the rating Dr for WC, this time around. Keep in mind if you receive say a 10% partial disability rating this time, and after reopening (if that's what the case may be) after all corrective medical care, you are found with 11% partial disability rating. You are only able to file a claim for the new 1% partial disability as you were previously deemed and awarded 10% from the first round.

    Yes you will need to weigh out the pros and cons of retaining a lawyer. You need to ask yourself is giving a lawyer 20% of your rating award is worth the additional few added points to your overall rating ( if any at all??)

    If your question is how long do you have to determine if you want to retain a lawyer, you have till before the case settles.

    BUG

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Quote Quoting HurtinJersey View Post
    A little about what happened. I was working on a job site and we were required to wear the blue plastic boot covers, a hair net, a lab coat, safety harness, safety glasses along with a hard hat.
    Working on a 10 foot step ladder I was descending on the ladder to get some material and slipped and fell from the 3rd step to the concrete floor. Not realizing at the time I was injured, I finished working till the end of the work day. The next day I was unable to put pressure on my leg, called the company and was directed to go to the local care center. They did not do anything else except physical therapy. This did nothing and was a waste of time. I once again contacted my employer and was told to go to a orthopedic doctor, which I did. He sent me for a MRI, the results shown a torn medicis and was informed it would require surgery. I had the surgery done, followed by physical therapy. 11 weeks after surgery I returned to work, still with a bit of pain, and with time the pain decreased.
    My question is regarding a settlement for pain and suffering etc. Is there normally a settlement offered ? Is there a lawyer required ? What could I expect as a decent settlement ? If I obtain a settlement will it affect my future employment with this employer ?
    I am not looking to get rich. I was recently laid off from this employer. I do not know if this accident was a direct cause of the layoff or rather part due to the economy.
    Thank you in advance.....
    Back again with a update: I had gone with the lawyer and settled for the first settlement and reopened the case in a timely matter. I applied for ssd and was approved which has helped in keeping the financial portion of my life intact.
    Went the route of PT ...Injections...Braces and such with little or no noticeable improvement.
    During my visit to the orthopedic surgeon last week he agreed that I am in need of a total knee replacement. Now I am awaiting the approval of the WC insurance company for the procedure.
    My questions and concerns are as follows: (1) I am guessing that soon after the knee replacement my lawyer will be looking to settle once again, How is it determined what is a fair settlement ?
    (2) Is there still another time for this case to be reopened with workmen's comp? Or would twice be the limit ?
    (3) Would any settlement hurt my SSD benefits ?
    (4) Not being able to work in the construction industry and at the fact that I have not been able to work since 2009 and collecting SSD, am I able to get a part time job to additional income and socialization ?

    Thanks in advance

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Calif
    Posts
    17,941

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    (2) Is there still another time for this case to be reopened with workmen's comp? Or would twice be the limit ?
    Reopening a claim does not change the SOL.
    (3) Would any settlement hurt my SSD benefits ?
    Sure... the amount though depends on how the documents are worded, and/or the allocations. You would also have to address Medicare interests in any settlement that changes/closes the medical in a comp claim. That would/may include a MSA/Medicare Setaside Arrangement, and can delay any settlement. Nor can you force the carrier to fund a MSA.
    (4) Not being able to work in the construction industry and at the fact that I have not been able to work since 2009 and collecting SSD, am I able to get a part time job to additional income and socialization ?
    Return to work wouldn't be a comp issue, but a SSA determination to gainful employment. That could affect your SSDI entitlement depending on the amount you earn. SSA determines gainful employment as 6+ months of income in excess of $1,000/month.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: Injured on Job, Have

    Total knee replacement usually goes for 55% leg. (perm)

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