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Back Injury Settlement
#1
1st Post Hope Im Doing This Right---- Read whatever pops out at you.
I had a bad back injury, no fault of mine, had to get a spinal fusion, I almost died in the accident and on the way to the hospital.  I broke/fractured/punctured a bunch of other things as well be the back is the biggest problem.  I was in the hospital for a few weeks, the bill was about half a million when I left, WC covered it all. I'm still undergoing treatment for injuries.
I'm not even 21 yet and I am injured for life.  I had to drop out of college for a year and I can never run or jump again. (I'll spare you the sob story but you get the idea). 

Anyways I have an attorney, but haven't talked to him lately (Calling him ASAP).  I went to my QME a little, while ago, glanced at the percentages but havent gone over them thoroughly yet.  

I got a check in the mail today, it wasn't even $20k.  Is this how they offer a settlement? I thought it had to go through my attorney? But a check? It says non negotiable, this isn't enough money to cover a semester of college... It will literally cost me money since I won't get financial aid.  I "heard" that you usually get about half of your medical bills.  I was hoping for like 100K.  If this is it, I will use it to pay hobos to piss on the insurance companies buildings.

The hell is this crud?

The check says non negotiable. I thought they were supposed to offer a settlement... 

I'm a kid thrust into a world of BS and I really need some opinions.

Yes I will go talk to my lawyer.
 
Reply
#2
there are more then 50 different work comp systems; each with their own unique set of laws.
you won't get much specific information without posting your state or if you are a federal employee.
http://www.workerscompensation.com/forum...?tid=10146

what makes you think that is your settlement?

never heard of any relationship between paid medical and settlement; there certainly is no legal basis for connecting the two.
what do you mean by "settlement"?
Permanent disability $$ or are you trying to cash out of all your future benefits.

you need to find out more about workers comp so you can ask the right questions.
doesn't sound like your atty prepared you very well or explained much.
post your state and we can get you started.
you might also use the search feature on this board and read a few posts to get a feel for how comp systems works.

definitely sounds like you are confusing tort and civil liability law with workers comp; totally different.
comp is "no fault" so both you and the employer share the costs of the injury.
they pay med and disability and you give up fighting in court for a big payout.
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
THANKS FOR POSTING.
 
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#3
(09-30-2015, 12:11 AM)1171 Wrote: there are more then 50 different work comp systems; each with their own unique set of laws.
you won't get much specific information without posting your state or if you are a federal employee.
http://www.workerscompensation.com/forum...?tid=10146

what makes you think that is your settlement?

never heard of any relationship between paid medical and settlement; there certainly is no legal basis for connecting the two.
what do you mean by "settlement"?
Permanent disability $$ or are you trying to cash out of all your future benefits.

you need to find out more about workers comp so you can ask the right questions.
doesn't sound like your atty prepared you very well or explained much.
post your state and we can get you started.
you might also use the search feature on this board and read a few posts to get a feel for how comp systems works.

definitely sounds like you are confusing tort and civil liability law with workers comp; totally different.
comp is "no fault" so both you and the employer share the costs of the injury.
they pay med and disability and you give up fighting in court for a big payout.

Sorry about that, I am in California.  
I received a check in the mail all it said was "based on the permanency rating from the QME" I have no idea what that means. (I get the disability ratings) but is that all I am supposed to get?
I know WC doesent cover pain and suffering, I was just dont know what this check is. Last time I talked to my atty he mentioned I should keep future benefits (I want to), but I thought I could decide when the time came.  All the check says is "based on the rating," so that is what confuses me.
 
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#4
(09-29-2015, 10:29 PM)backprobs Wrote: 1st Post Hope Im Doing This Right---- Read whatever pops out at you.
I had a bad back injury, no fault of mine, had to get a spinal fusion, I almost died in the accident and on the way to the hospital.  I broke/fractured/punctured a bunch of other things as well be the back is the biggest problem.  I was in the hospital for a few weeks, the bill was about half a million when I left, WC covered it all. I'm still undergoing treatment for injuries.
I'm not even 21 yet and I am injured for life.  I had to drop out of college for a year and I can never run or jump again. (I'll spare you the sob story but you get the idea). 

Anyways I have an attorney, but haven't talked to him lately (Calling him ASAP).  I went to my QME a little, while ago, glanced at the percentages but havent gone over them thoroughly yet.  

I got a check in the mail today, it wasn't even $20k.  Is this how they offer a settlement? I thought it had to go through my attorney? But a check? It says non negotiable, this isn't enough money to cover a semester of college... It will literally cost me money since I won't get financial aid.  I "heard" that you usually get about half of your medical bills.  I was hoping for like 100K.  If this is it, I will use it to pay hobos to piss on the insurance companies buildings.

The hell is this crud?

The check says non negotiable. I thought they were supposed to offer a settlement... 

I'm a kid thrust into a world of BS and I really need some opinions.

Yes I will go talk to my lawyer.

I typed this before your response above. It sounds like that is your settlement from your PD rating which is basically your settlement. You should be eligible for vocational rehab vouchers for college on top of this. Your attorney can fight this rating if he disagrees. I understand your confusion as the CA work comp system is very complicated. If you want a simple book to help you understand it more you can but Christopher Ball How To Take Charge When You Are Injured On The Job, but make sure it is the most current edition or you can look up your questions on this link.http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/dwc_home_page.htm You can also request a free guideline book for injured workers from this link. http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/InjuredWorker.htm

I would not listen to anyone about settlement except your attorney. I think what people were referring to is civil claims for car accidents because that is a formula some use for that. Work comp is entirely different.

Every state has different work comp laws. Are you from CA because you mentioned QME? You do not need to give any specifics about your claim that can be used to identify you, but state and year of injury would be helpful (please do not give exact date you were injured).  Your injury benefits and laws (if from CA) are depended upon year of injury, but you do not need to provide the exact date of injury.

If you are from CA this could be TTD (temporary disability payments) if the insurance company did not pay you when you were off of work. It may also be PD payment. This is paid usually after you are rated. Work comp TTD us not taxable, will not show up on taxes and do not have to claim it on your taxes... so I would ask your attorney if it is considered income for financial aid purposes.

If you are from CA there are a few ways to settle your case. You can settle by a stip which means the insurance company will be liable for your medical treatment and then you  get paid PD payments for how high you were rated. The other way to settle is called a compromise and release, which means the WC insurance company is no longer liable for your medical treatment and they will give you money to close out your claim. If you still need treatment and medications. This will have to be paid by you or you can ask your private insurance if they will cover these injuries.

I would not let this work comp stop you from college or moving forward in life. You are young and things can get better. I was told I would end up in a wheel chair within 3 years and I walk normally now. If you need accommodation from college like extra time on tests, etc you can sign up under disabled student services. You will then have priority registration. I would also recommend applying for grants as well. If you are not able to return to your job you will qualify for vocational rehab. If you were injured after 1/1/2013 you qualify for 6 grand in college voucher and also a check for 5 grand you can use on whatever you want. if you were injured before 1/1/2013 you only qualify for the college voucher and the amount is depended upon your PD rating.
I am not an attorney.Anything I write should not be considered legal advice.I am writing from my own personal experiences,which is not from any sort of legal background. You should consult with an attorney over legal issues. In California, if you cannot get an attorney you can consult with an I&A officer.
 
Reply
#5
(09-30-2015, 12:51 AM)California_Help Wrote:
(09-29-2015, 10:29 PM)backprobs Wrote: 1st Post Hope Im Doing This Right---- Read whatever pops out at you.
I had a bad back injury, no fault of mine, had to get a spinal fusion, I almost died in the accident and on the way to the hospital.  I broke/fractured/punctured a bunch of other things as well be the back is the biggest problem.  I was in the hospital for a few weeks, the bill was about half a million when I left, WC covered it all. I'm still undergoing treatment for injuries.
I'm not even 21 yet and I am injured for life.  I had to drop out of college for a year and I can never run or jump again. (I'll spare you the sob story but you get the idea). 

Anyways I have an attorney, but haven't talked to him lately (Calling him ASAP).  I went to my QME a little, while ago, glanced at the percentages but havent gone over them thoroughly yet.  

I got a check in the mail today, it wasn't even $20k.  Is this how they offer a settlement? I thought it had to go through my attorney? But a check? It says non negotiable, this isn't enough money to cover a semester of college... It will literally cost me money since I won't get financial aid.  I "heard" that you usually get about half of your medical bills.  I was hoping for like 100K.  If this is it, I will use it to pay hobos to piss on the insurance companies buildings.

The hell is this crud?

The check says non negotiable. I thought they were supposed to offer a settlement... 

I'm a kid thrust into a world of BS and I really need some opinions.

Yes I will go talk to my lawyer.

I typed this before your response above. It sounds like that is your settlement from your PD rating which is basically your settlement. You should be eligible for vocational rehab vouchers for college on top of this. Your attorney can fight this rating if he disagrees.

I would not listen to anyone about settlement except your attorney. I think what people were referring to is civil claims for car accidents because that is a formula some use for that. Work comp is entirely different.

Every state has different work comp laws. Are you from CA because you mentioned QME? You do not need to give any specifics about your claim that can be used to identify you, but state and year of injury would be helpful (please do not give exact date you were injured).  Your injury benefits and laws (if from CA) are depended upon year of injury, but you do not need to provide the exact date of injury.

If you are from CA this could be TTD (temporary disability payments) if the insurance company did not pay you when you were off of work. It may also be PD payment. This is paid usually after you are rated. Work comp TTD us not taxable, will not show up on taxes and do not have to claim it on your taxes... so I would ask your attorney if it is considered income for financial aid purposes.

If you are from CA there are a few ways to settle your case. You can settle by a stip which means the insurance company will be liable for your medical treatment and then you  get paid PD payments for how high you were rated. The other way to settle is called a compromise and release, which means the WC insurance company is no longer liable for your medical treatment and they will give you money to close out your claim. If you still need treatment and medications. This will have to be paid by you or you can ask your private insurance if they will cover these injuries.

I would not let this work comp stop you from college or moving forward in life. You are young and things can get better. I was told I would end up in a wheel chair within 3 years and I walk normally now. If you need accommodation from college like extra time on tests, etc you can sign up under disabled student services. You will then have priority registration. I would also recommend applying for grants as well. If you are not able to return to your job you will qualify for vocational rehab. If you were injured after 1/1/2013 you qualify for 6 grand in college voucher and also a check for 5 grand you can use on whatever you want. if you were injured before 1/1/2013 you only qualify for the college voucher and the amount is depended upon your PD rating.

Thanks! its says PD based on disability rating. accident was 2013
What I still dont fully understand: Am I still going to settle/get more PD payments? Unless they offer a ridiculous amount of money I am going to settle by "stip." What is odd to me is that I havent heard a word about settling, and than this check shows up with no explanation.

also my job was seasonal, and they only paid me for the remainder of the season that I was injured. Should I try and get paid for the two seasons I didnt work afterwords? There is no way I could go back to my old job title, but they did say they could hire me on as something else, but the accident was pretty traumatizing and I didnt want to go back. I never had a doctor say I was ready to work again though (Until my recent QME)

Those vouchers sound nice as well. I have about 30k saved up for college that I made in highschool, and I'm in community college till I transfer next year. Can I still get them?


You are a fantastic help, as I am just trying to understand more about what is going on.  I will be contacting my attorney tomorrow as well.
 
Reply
#6
it sounds like an advance payment of their estimate of your permanent disability as required by law.
whether there is more and how much depends on your rating. the greater the rating the longer benefits are paid.
there will be formal rating and calculation issued by the state's disability evaluation unit.
lump sum agreement that includes a buyout of future medical coverage has to be negotiated; it's not just your choice.

you should have been paid temporary disability for the whole time you were temporarily disabled-prior to being Permanent & stationary or Maximum Medical improvement. if they offered modified work and you refused, it'll be difficult to claim more disability payments --but talk to your atty about it.

here's where you can start finding out about california comp benefits and how they are calculated
for Permanent disability payments start with fact sheet D
http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/iwguides.html

you can also refer to chapter 7 of the guidebook
http://www.dir.ca.gov/InjuredWorkerGuide...ebook.html
Reminder :
........Each state has their own comp system; POST YOUR STATE to get accurate information. Use the search feature to find information from similar questions.
THANKS FOR POSTING.
 
Reply
#7
If your employer is willing to offer you work and you do not take it I do not think you are eligible for the $11,000. in vouchers. I would recommend discussing this with your attorney to make sure. It may be beneficial to attempt the position they offered, but again talk to your attorney about this because he will know what is best.

I just re-read your post and it stated you were traumatized by the event of the injury Is your doctor and QME aware of this? I wonder if in this situation you could qualify for vocational rehab vouchers without having to return to your employer. I would discuss this with your attorney.

This may be the most you will receive as far as settlement if you do not close out your medical. PD payment is basically an estimate of your settlement. If your attorney disagrees with the QME there may be things he can do. Have you shown the QME report to your doctor? They can usually tell if you received a appropriate rating as long as they are familiar with the work comp system. He can even write a rebuttal report if he and your attorney agree it is appropriate.

If you have pain issues, or concentration issues due to medications or need accommodation again I highly recommend making an appointment with the disabled student services counselor at your college and request a form for your doctor to fill out to request accommodation. Accommodation can be time and 1/2 or double time for tests, breaks from sitting, equipment if you have difficulties typing. You should also get priority registration. I would also ask if there are any grants available for your situation as well.
I am not an attorney.Anything I write should not be considered legal advice.I am writing from my own personal experiences,which is not from any sort of legal background. You should consult with an attorney over legal issues. In California, if you cannot get an attorney you can consult with an I&A officer.
 
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