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A Casuals Affair?/ Call for Collective Unity
Is there any one here who is under the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act. and if so are there any "Casuals"? The LHWCA falls under federal Laws. Is is similar in obtaining the injuryed workers Average Weekly Wage (AWW) from The National Average Weekly Wage (NAWW) set minimum and maximum comp paid. It also goes by the standard 52 weeks divided into the total earnings within 52 weeks immediately proceeding the day of injury.

As I am writing this there doesn't seem to be much difference between the two and as I read the horror stories of an unjust system. I can't help but to ask; Who are these institutions that have the power to inflict so much loss and some loss that no amount of money will ever be able to replace. Such as in my case, a loss of a child. Why? because they can get away with it?

My heart goes out to all of you. To read story after story, mine is no different. Everything is realitive because we the people have no recourse and the pain and suffereing is real. The Attorneys, the Department Of Labor, Insurance Company's and there hired gun Doctor's are corrupt and greed far surpases the notion of Fair and Reasonable.

How blind we are to the fact that these people work day in and day out together? that's right no different then our legal court system. They have known each other for years. And to believe they don't make deals or get paid off, offered bonus's and perks then we are foolishly blind.

In my opinion it's time to make a stand. We have no one to whom we can put our faith in nor look out for our best interest or well being except each other. The power in in unity and we have to stop feeling like victims. This way of thinking weakens us and we become isolated and feel powerless.

I have been so dicked around by these insituations with no one willing to help much less concerned with the fact, I lost my home, in financial ruin which finally resulted in losing my child because I could not provide properly for her. None of this had to happen.

The reason I asked if there were any "Casuals" here is because they know that we work when work is available period. And as such one never knows when? If any one should get injured regardless of union status (which by the way Casuals don't have) It is under Title 33 Section 910 of the Act. that offers 3 methods to derieve ones AWW and comp rate.

Sec 910a and 910b. These first two are based upon the injured worker who worked 5 to 6 days a week substantially the whole year prior to injury. so they take the day before injured and count back 52 weeks, add the weeks earnings then divide the total earnings by 52, after calculating the end result is a persons AWW.

For the majority of those who do work 5 to 6 days a week their AWW will be above the minimum, they then multiply Their AWW by 2/3 and whatever it equals too, regardless how much more above the maximum a persons AWW is, you will be compensated nothing more then what has been set within the NAWW guidelines.

Now if your AWW is above the minimum but your comp rate after the 2/3 is below the minimum your paid the minimum. This is basically how 910a and b work. The difference is, b is 70% the year prior to injury 5 to 6 days a week and can be based on another workers Average who worked in the same field doing the same type of work during the same time frame.

910c comes into play if the weeks worked are intermittent and irregular and who didn't work consistantly in a 52 week period. there are then different factors to be considered. They may choose to make up the hours or weeks from a persons employment if worked else where during the 52 weeks, or it may be that due to work availability they'll go back in previous years to obtain 52 weeks worked in the same employment. They also might take the average worked by another doing the same and in the time frame. Or simply divide the total earning by the actual weeks worked.

Please forgive me for the length of my post and I hope I am making sense to those who have taken the time to read it. just a little more I want to share and is the beginning of my disregarded dispute.

As I've mentioned above I am a "Casual" I work when work is available. I do not, because of that fact, work 5 to 6 days a week and since 2007-2008 work has declined to 1 day a week and sometimes no work for more than 2 weeks at a time. In this industry with Casual status it's all about the hours and job availability is done by what jobs were left over from the big hall and the rotation of the alphabet.

Because of this, it is difficult to have another job. !. work availability in unpredictable 2. if your letter is close one cannot afford to miss or flop as it's called and lose needed hours. 3. a person then has to be down at the hall for mornings 1st dispatch and again in the later afternoon for 2nd dispatch. Totalling 6 hours a day within the days working hours. this can go on for days without work. They say the sacrifice will payoff. Maybe maybe not with the way things are going, and most likely anyone who has been injuryed wont have the hours needed.

After 8 years and two separate injuries to my rotator cuff, the second included 50% bicep tear 4mm protrusion in cervicals 4-7 and carpal tunnal in both wrists. that golden ticket I fear will not be mine as my groups hours are double by comparison.

The Claims Adjuster involving my second injury I would ha deal with and still am!, has made one error after another right at the starting gate. It has been a total nightmare along with the Department Of Labor and Attornys who can't be bothered why? because my claim doesn't produce the $$$.

First she overlooks the actual day my comp started, the day she used wasn't even on my payroll sheet. Thus $294 earned on the first day beginning week32 wasn't calculated in., The first LS-206 she started out doing the right thing regardless of her oversight, by dividing my total earnings by the actual weeks I worked and because it was the below NAWW minimum the form sent shows she correts herself and highlighted arrows back to the orginial figure away from the 2/3 applied figure and above the orginal writes pay due to below the minimum, $245 a wk. and if calculated right it would have been $254 a wk.

Then not a month later I receive another LS-206, wherein she stated due to PMA 's new wage infor my comp rate was amended and motified to $136 a wk. All the Adjuster did was because there was no new info to justify was manipulate the Act. and use Sec 910a! a place I do not fall under. from there it just gets worse. and still to this day after everything I have lost their still trying to.. excuse my french......screw me

One last thing more, It would be an injustuce not to mention the only good in this mess, surprisingly was from the attorney I fired who placed a lien against my settlement for the 15 hours @$300 per hour totalling $4500. I went to his office to see if he would maybe, kinda a little , possibly consider seeing how the Insurance company wont budge from their premature lowball figure of $15,000 maybe lower his fees a little? My Ex Attorney James McAdams Waived the entire amount and faxed the Adjuster a formal letter saying so! Bless him.

I haven't even gotten into what the Department Of labor, Claims Examiner did while holding hands with my Adjuster. I have endured more than any injured worker should ever have too! and what really saddens me Is... I am not the only one!!
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........I love cats, I just cant eat a whole one by myself......


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