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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    Default Attorney Should Be Recognized

    1993 testimony to Legislature regarding proposed changes to W/C Act

    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: Members of the Labor Committee, my
    name is Steven Embry, and I'm an attorney and like
    you I represent the interest of injured workers who
    have given their arms and their backs and their
    hearts to help build this country. We're here to
    determine today whether or not those workers are
    going to sentenced to a ghetto of poverty, pain
    and hopelessness. We here in Connecticut are not
    living up to our obligations to our injured
    workers. We rank first in the country in income,
    and 14th in the amount of money paid in
    compensation indicating that we are far behind what
    we need to be doing.
    An injured worker in Connecticut loses his job. He
    loses his pension and he loses his health
    insurance, and now he's blamed for the bad economy
    and all I can say is shame on you for blaming him
    for that. A worker who is so disabled that his
    employer refuses to take him back to work should be
    treated fairly and the burden shifted to the
    insurance company to prove that work is available.
    The worker is so disabled that he can only get back
    to work with retraining should be supported while
    he is in school.
    We should more fully compensate workers who have
    permanent wage loss and are truly suffering. When
    a medical bill is submitted to an insurance
    company, the insurance company should pay it
    promptly or tell them why not. An employer who
    discovers his employee has been injured should be
    required to report it to him out of fairness and
    justice and to notify the employee of his rights.
    Our system for compensating asbestos victims is a
    tragedy and a farce.
    It's a disaster that now takes years to solve
    because of multiple hearings requiring multiple
    employers to be brought in. We here on the
    Connecticut Trial Lawyers support a system of
    simplified justice of joint and several liability
    to insure that workers are paid promptly and
    fairly. We must restore health insurance benefits
    to injured workers. It is absolutely unacceptable
    to end medical care at the very moment that a
    worker is hurt. Most importantly we strongly
    support efforts to reduce injuries.
    It's injuries after all that cost jobs, not
    workers' compensation. We should not be blaming
    the victims. We support safety committees and
    safety inspectors to end the carnage and cost of
    injuries. When an employee, employer intentionally
    disregards OSHA regulations, it should be stripped
    of the shield of workers' compensation. For
    workers' compensation is a shield designed to
    protect employers from the consequences of
    industrial accidents, shifting those costs onto the
    broken backs of workers.
    Do not be confused by those who suggest that if we
    only pretend that there is no cost to injuries that
    those costs will go away. Last year we took a step
    back from fairness. The forces of darkness are
    gathering again here at this very Chamber.
    REP. EBERLE: Could you please summarize, sir?
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: Yeah, I will. The sound that you
    hear in the State of Connecticut now is swords
    being beaten into plow shares. Unfortunately the
    business alliance wants to beat those swords over
    the workers' heads. They get to keep the shield of
    workers' compensation while the worker gets the
    REP. EBERLE: Alright. Are there questions?
    Representative Andrews.
    REP. ANDREWS: Sir, you talked and stated that you're
    in favor of simplification of the system.
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: Yes, sir.
    REP. ANDREWS: To that end would you favor streamlining
    the system that would make it a heck of a lot
    easier for a worker to get into the system to go
    through the informal and formal hearing process
    without the necessity of an attorney?
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: Well, I certainly would if that
    could be done. And then there's a simple rule for
    that. If you don't allow employers to be
    represented by attorneys, then there's no reason
    why workers should have attorneys. My experience is
    quite simple that the employer cuts off the faucet
    and the employee has to turn around and seek for
    help from someplace else, and the Commissioners
    can't do it.
    On the other hand, we certainly should have a
    simpler system without multiple litigation costs.
    For instance, under the statute now, an asbestos
    victim who has worked for 50 employers has to bring
    all of those 50 employers in and each of those
    employers shows up with one or two lawyers, and in
    a simple case I represented a lady whose husband
    died of mesophilioma. Everybody admits that he
    died as a result of a work related injury, but over
    a year has gone by and her husband, she has been
    not been paid, simply because the employers refused
    to agree among themselves as to how much each of
    them should pay, and because the insurance
    companies get to keep the money.
    For instance, the man from the company you pointed
    out that he had paid 400 some thousand dollars in
    premiums and only $27,000 had been paid out in
    benefits. A good question would be to ask where
    did the other $370,000 go and why are the insurance
    companies keeping so much?
    REP. EBERLE: Thank you. Are there other questions?
    Senator DeLuca.
    SEN. DELUCA: Thank you for your testimony, sir. You
    talked a lot about the unfairness to the workers if
    this was done, and I heard Mr. Wilson earlier today
    talk about something that I considered that hasn't
    been addressed very much by this, shall we say this
    side today, and how would you address fraud in the
    system? You didn't mention that at all. I'm under
    the impression that what Mr. Wilson said that
    there's sometimes collusion between different
    parties, not only the injured person, but there has
    to be other people involved that represent them,
    whether it be the medical people or a lawyer in
    some cases. How would you address that?
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: I'm very concerned about fraud.
    As a matter of fact, I spoke about it. When a
    worker sends in a medical bill that the employer is
    supposed to pay, it should be paid. Why does the
    insurance company fraudulently refuse to pay it?
    You're talking about one side of fraud. You're
    talking about only one side of fraud.
    SEN. DELUCA: How about addressing the part I asked you
    about? That would be nice. You talked about that
    already. I didn't ask you that. I asked you about
    this particular one. Could you answer that part?
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: You asked me about fraud. What
    I'm telling you is the biggest source of fraud in
    the system is in insurance companies that don't pay
    valid claims on a timely basis, and that the fraud
    you should be out after investigating that.
    SEN. DELUCA: Thank you for not answering my question,
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: You're welcome.
    REP. EBERLE: Thank you. Are there any other
    questions? (Applause) Please, please I don't want
    to have to clear the room. You've been asked
    before not to do that please, so that we can move
    through the list. Many of you are waiting to speak
    and it will go a lot faster if we don't do that.
    Are there other questions from the Committee?
    Thank you, Mr. Embry.
    ATTY. STEVEN EMBRY: Thank you for your time

    Attorney Steven Embry is from the law firm of Embry & Neusner in Groton CT.

    Republican Senator DeLuca resigned his position in 2007 amid charges of criminal acts.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Default Re: Attorney Should Be Recognized

    Lost, that is a great find of one lawyer in Connecticut actually standing up for workers. Steven Embrys’ statement to Connecticut Legislators’ is no less to injured workers as President Lincolns’ Gettysburg Address was to our nation……

    “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

    Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
    But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract.

    The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

    President Abraham Lincoln
    Mr. Picket DOI 1991 Hern Disc Lumbar crooked lawyers, crooked commissioners, liars and cheats. 2005 self pay 2-level ADR Artificial Disc Replacement.*****edited by Tony****

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