WHAT WORKCOMP MEDIATION CAN LOOK LIKE

Here is a communication shared with a few injured workers and medical care providers who have been battling the system for years.  It was written so that it could just be given to the attorney, if warranted.  Maybe it will help you also?  
Please let me know if it brings other questions to your mind, and we’ll see about answering them in another blog, in a general way, so others may also be helped.   Or, we can find some experts to address the issues in greater detail.

These are some rough thoughts on how mediation with a structured settlement team and Medicare Set Aside Expert can help move a WorkComp case to Settlement, freeing up an Injured Worker to get medical care. It is really quite simple and effective.

The drawing attached is a “mind-map” created as a draft and talking points for the blog.

mind map structured settlement out

DISCLAIMER:  This is not legal, accounting or tax advice and you are encouraged to seek professional advice from same before entering into any agreements with anybody.

Insurance carriers are often inclined to AGREE TO MEDIATE when “RESERVES” are known to be high.  Via a structured settlement situation, they somehow save money with spending future dollars and not all in one chunk.

A good Structured Settlement negotiator is key, and a good, EXPERIENCED WorkComp MEDIATOR.   There seems to be a whole new venue of “Medicare Set Aside” experts, which the Mediation/Settlement team can probably recommend.  Social Security is a mine-field, so stay alert and be prepared for anything.

Mediation seems to work for unrepresented injured workers, but it’s more work for all parties, and some people won’t do it.

If you have legal representation willing to step aside and let settlement negotiations take place, it can be win/win/win for all parties, and more importantly, can mean freedom and restoration of civil rights for the injured workers.

Some attorneys representing Injured Workers are even known to accept their portion of settlement on a structured basis, as it also has some tax benefits, if I understand it correctly.

Often, the “parties reach agreement, subject to a confidentiality agreement” and the injured worker is spared years of delays, denied medical care and legal anguish.  The carriers often save money, and close the books.  Attorneys get paid, even when they have done little to facilitate resolution and settlement.

So, remembers, it is NOT ARBITRATION.  Mediation takes place outside of WorkComp arena and is approved by a WorkComp Judge upon completion.

Mediate.com is a resource that shows how few professionals are involved in WorkComp SOLUTIONS in California.    There are several structured settlement companies that also specialize in WorkComp structured settlements.

If you or your attorney would like the contact information for a couple of professionals, please feel free to let me know.   Using my name may or may not be beneficial.  One California Brain Injury Super Lawyer allegedly told one TBI Survivor “you are very lucky to have Linda as an advocate on your behalf.”   Others have said that I “scare industry people”….

If your attorney says the carrier and defense will not settle, he/she may not have all the information and tools to make that happen.  It can start with a simple call to the defense with a question, “What will it take to settle this case now?”

If your attorney wants some encouragement to explore settlement possibilities, feel free to have him/her contact me.

“Anytime, anywhere any Injured Worker reaches out for help, I want helping hands to be there, and for that, I am responsible.”

Best wishes,
Linda Ayres

WorkCompLinda@gmail.com
MyWorkCompCoach.com

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ProPublica USA WorkComp Update: U.S. Labor Department: States Are Failing Injured Workers

U.S. Labor Department: States Are Failing Injured Workers

by Michael Grabell ProPublica, Oct. 5, 2016, 6:01 a.m.

A U.S. Department of Labor report released today details the bleak fate facing the nation’s injured workers, noting that those hurt on the job are at “great risk of falling into poverty” because state workers’ compensation systems are failing to provide them with adequate benefits.

The report lays the groundwork for renewed federal oversight of state workers’ comp programs, providing a detailed history of the government’s past efforts to step in when states fell short. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said in a statement Tuesday night that he was drafting legislation “to address many of the troubling findings laid out in this report” and hoped to advance it in the next Congress.

The 43-page report was prompted by a letter last fall from 10 prominent lawmakers, including Brown, urging more action to protect injured workers following a ProPublica and NPR series on workers’ comp. The stories found that since 2003, more than 30 states had changed their laws, causing some workers to lose their homes, or be denied surgeries or prosthetic devices their doctors recommended.

The Labor Department’s conclusions echo ProPublica and NPR’s findings that states have decreased benefits, created hurdles to medical care, raised the burden of proof to qualify for help and shifted costs to public programs, such as Social Security Disability Insurance.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, a division of the Labor Department, made similar findings last year. But Wednesday’s report underscores the prominence of the issue, as departmental investigations are typically reserved for White House priorities, such as increasing the minimum wage and guaranteeing paid family leave.

The report provides a roadmap of potential actions, but stops short of new policy recommendations in what appears to be a tacit nod to the fact that President Obama’s term is waning and substantial changes must wait for another administration. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez, who was shortlisted as a potential vice presidential candidate, is expected to hold a top job if Hillary Clinton wins the election next month.

“With this report, we’re sounding an alarm bell,” Perez said in an interview Tuesday. “A critical part of the safety net is being both attacked and eroded in no small measure because there are no federal minimum standards for workers’ compensation.”

“I hope that Congress will step up,” he added. “We have to fix this system.”

Workers’ comp dates back more than century, with each state having its own system of benefits, insurance rules and courts. Typically, when a worker is injured, employers pay their medical bills, a portion of their lost wages and compensation for any permanent disabilities. In exchange for prompt and certain benefits, workers are barred from suing their employers.

But as ProPublica and NPR found, the benefits can vary drastically, with compensation for an amputated arm ranging from $45,000 to $740,000, even in neighboring states.

The Labor Department report details how states have changed their laws largely in an effort to reduce business costs as they compete for new corporate headquarters, factories and warehouses 2014 a trend the report calls a “race to the bottom.”

It calls for policymakers to explore how to prevent the costs of workplace injuries and illnesses from being transferred to public programs, how to increase the sharing of injury data between insurers and public health researchers, and how to develop programs that help disabled workers return to the job.

Most significantly, it floats the idea of increasing federal oversight of state workers’ comp programs, which could include the appointment of a national commission, federal tracking of state laws and the establishment of minimum standards and penalties if states fail to meet them.

A presidential commission in 1972 came up with 19 guidelines for states to improve their workers’ comp systems and recommended that Congress mandate them if states didn’t act. Many states did, but as political winds shifted in the early 1980s, the threat of federal intervention passed.

The suggestion of increased federal involvement has set off alarm bells in the insurance and employer communities.

“Federal requirements imposed on a national basis would be inconsistent with the state workers’ compensation system, which has been in place for more than 100 years without federal oversight,” wrote Douglas Holmes in a recent blog post. Holmes is president of UWC, a business lobby group focused on unemployment and workers’ comp.

But in its report, the Labor Department notes that as far back as 1939, the agency considered setting guiding principles for workers’ comp as part of its mission. President Harry Truman spoke of promoting standards for state programs while President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s labor secretary sponsored the drafting of model workers’ comp laws.

Such involvement continued through the Ford and Carter administrations but was curtailed during the Reagan era. The Labor Department continued to track states’ compliance with the 1972 commission guidelines until 2004, when budget cuts ended the program.

Courts and lawmakers in several states have moved to restore workers’ comp protections since the ProPublica and NPR series published in 2015. Top courts in Florida and Oklahoma have overturned a number of business-friendly reforms highlighted in the series, including a two-year cap on wage benefits and a provision that allowed Oklahoma businesses to opt out of workers’ comp and write their own plans to care for injured employees. This summer, New Mexico’s Supreme Court granted farmworkers the right to workers’ comp for the first time in 100 years.

In California, the governor last week signed a bill that will reduce the roadblocks for workers to get medical care. And the state’s workers’ comp bureau is in the final stages of writing a new regulation that would allow more severely injured workers to qualify for home health care.

Last year, ProPublica profiled workers who had their home health aides taken away after a new law allowed insurance companies to reevaluate cases based on a more restrictive regulation.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for their newsletter.

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REBLOG IT!   Remember remember:  “Without a blog and a growing database, Injured Workers are Unarmed and Unprotect in the War On Workers.”  Tell your friends and neighbors; Congress already knows!

Read the October 20, 2015 letter from federal lawmakers to dol here.

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“Why is it that nobody gives a damn in this industry about big money fraud?”- David DePaolo

 

WE ARE THE MEDIA NOW   #DodgeTheRads – Be ITK about Your Radiation This Week

Injured Workers’ Stories Are The Same – minor differences are names, body parts and case numbers – Ask a Doctor or Lawyer for confirmation

Ask Your Injured Friends and Neighbors, too!

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“The reason you draw the reactions from these folks is not because you are being vilified, or because they have a disdain for the injured worker with a voice or any other malicious reason.”

“It is very simple – you offer nothing positive relative to change.”

“Anyone can complain. Few do anything to effectuate change.”

“Drawing attention to the negative, which you have done for the past several years, does nothing to further the conversation, offers no solutions, provides no road map.”

REALLY????

…It simply is not enough to complain. Everyone has a complaint. A complaint without a solution is bulls**t. You may as well just dig a hole and hide because no one is going to pay attention.

Everyone knows that bad sh*t happens in work comp and that there are profiteers off of the injured. That’s no secret.

So what are YOU going to do about it? …. Anonymous Industry Mouthpiece

The contempt and disdain that masks the dangers to Injured Workers by the industry profiteers is undeniable and sounds pretty darn dangerous, doesn’t it?

They ‘might be right.’

I wonder what if the 30,000 + viewers of AskAboutWorkersCompGravyTrains.com have any opinions on the foregoing statements?  If so, please tell me more at WorkCompLinda@gmail.com

Watch for future issues of MyWorkCompCoach.com for strategies on how to deal with such interactions.  Remember remember Ghandi…

‘First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then…YOUR BLOG POSTS GO VIRAL!’  – or something like that, huh?   xooxoxo

I want to find a way to propose solutions to help Injured Workers escape the WC System with their lives.  The laws are unenforced and meaningless.

I have a collection of Injured Worker stories, most of whom prefer to be Anonymous.  Watch for them.  They include, but are not limited to, in progress tragedies apparently caused by Sedgwick and others.  Most have poor-to-no legal representation, advocacy, medical care or benefits.  Yes, in America! An AMERICAN DIRTY OPEN SECRET.

Too many lawyers just make stuff up to protect profits by any means necessary. The US Constitution is mocked by the WorkCompsters, and far worse, they get away with it.  You don’t look.  You don’t care. Till you’re stuck in the box car, heading for the death camps of WorkComp.  Enough is enough.

It will require teams of mediators and structured settlement people. Would you find that of any interest? Start with a plan to release all POW’s who have been in the WorkComp System 4 or more years…..within 12 months, with the help and supervision of the National Guard.

It requires “arming ” Injured Workers with the ability to blog and share their stories, heinous as most of them are.

I am also in the process creating a course for Injured Workers to empower them with Work Comp Survival and Virtual Combat Skills!  Watch for it!

I am wondering about the possibilities of a collaborative effort and ezine and possible Tele summit to unite voice of any good people in Workers Compensation with victims of WorkComp to lead legitimate national discussions “Of the People, By the People and For the People.”

I am one voice speaking on behalf of Injured Workers. There are a few of us.

Canadians and Australians seem more vocal about the same class atrocities. Perhaps they don’t fear their governments like so many American’s do?  Has our Constitution become so meaningless that an entire industry can profit by destroying a segment of the Working Class?   ‘When they come for you, there will be no one left to speak for you…’

Most injured workers are too terrified of the WorkCompsters and their legislated fraud and surveillance and threats, compounding denied medical care and benefits.  Doesn’t that truth make you shake your head and want to shout, “NOT IN THIS COUNTRY!!!”

The Injured Worker stories are the same — minor differences are names, body parts, and case numbers.  The outcomes are much the same too…with degrees of further maligned health,  income and job losses, botched surgeries, risk/cost shifts to taxpayers via Social Security and prison systems, ETC.

Some experts insist that the best injured workers can hope for in America is social security disability and an early death.   Really, some industry investigative reporting from the dark side, huh?

Others suggest that the best American’s can hope for is a program to provide ‘food for the poor injured workers’ rather than LAW ENFORCEMENT FOR MEDICAL CARE AND BENEFITS, indictments from criminal conduct of the WorkCompsters, and the protection by the National Guard for extreme CIVIL AND HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS IN EVERY STATE IN THE UNION.

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Congress didn’t offer assistance with food banks for poor tortured and abused Injured Workers.   Here’s the October 2015 letter where the ten signers clearly offer assistance, that could indeed come in the deployment of the National Guard, since State agencies also fail injured workers, nationally.

“….and whether added authorities are needed to better ensure that the interests of injured workers and taxpayers are protected.”

We say, keep your bags of surplus food out of the legal functioning of WorkComp…ENFORCE THE LAWS THAT ARE IN PLACE TO PROTECT INJURED WORKERS, AND INDICT THE OFFENDERS THAT READILY COMMIT FRAUD WITH INTENT TO DENY MEDICAL CARE, AND WORSE.

If the laws are unenforceable, then there is no choice but to immediately demolish the workers compensation systems and commence trials for the crimes being committed against every Injured Worker in America, and taxpayers, and employers and legitimate service providers.  You could be their next victim.

I am a work comp survivor, who was extremely unsuccessful in finding competent legal counsel.  Nevertheless, in pro per, ‘the parties reached resolution, subject to confidentiality agreement.”  #BloggersSurviveWorkComp

Doctor and Lawyer pals advised to “get out of the workers comp system by any means necessary; it will kill you.”   Some later said that in their entire careers, they never saw anybody fight so hard to survive WorkComp.

One such ‘fan’ suggested that I create a ‘coaching program.’  From that simple encouragement, I began working on a new blog, MyWorkCompCoach.com and an eCourse, Surviving Work Comp and Virtual Combat Skills on Teachable.

Personal ‘rebranding’  post-WorkComp is difficult when hearing fresh horror stories, while being continuously assaulted by industry trolls and their ilk.  It can, however, be accomplished, with a little help from our friends.

I have been a strong advocate for the CompLaude Awards 2014-2015 and I used my resources to also share in the social media communities about the recent 2016 best blogs contest.

A search of the website, AskAboutWorkersCompGravyTrains.com results in pages of and pages of posts about the Comp Laude event.  Ditto for the ‘Best Blogs’ event.  Call it ‘drivel’ if they will.  Sticks and Stones…..

We also shared news of the Sedgwick Institute Linked in group, for what it’s worth, after reading weeks before of the mega-funded SEDGWICK INSTITUTE, allegedly established to investigate the ‘issues’ of WorkComp.  Search my blogs for further info.  Google it.

I blog extensively, to the best of my abilities, as I recover from Worker’s Compensation and brain injury.  My anti-nuclear efforts have suffered tremendously due to WorkComp battles, but it has helped to see the parallels between the ‘PROFITS BEFORE LIVES’ nuclear and insurance industries, and the ‘swaths’ of 21st Century Sonderkommando.

I live near Joshua Tree National Park in California, USA. I am much nicer than I may appear in my blogs, and while my ability to speak is still impaired and challenging, I can speak but written communications are much easier for me, post-injury. If you have a story to share, send it to me.  We Are The Media Now.

Please let me know if you think there might be mutual benefit in a discussion. I have several projects on the table and it seems that the industry has amped up their propaganda blitz in a feeble effort to neutralize or mitigate the truths exposed in the 2015 Insult to Injury / Demolition of Worker’s Compensation series.

“Injured Workers without a blog are Unarmed and Unprotected In The WarOnWorkers!  #WoW”

Here are the industry’s picks of the Best Blogs of 2016.  Note the absence of Injured Worker Representation.

They all seem tasked with a propaganda launch to attempt to mitigate the truths exposed in 2015 by ProPublica and NPR efforts that just exposed the tip of the iceberg.  They are apparently having a ‘secret’ national discussion in May…. we’ll see what comes of that, won’t we.  So far, not so good in the open-ness and transparency arenas.  Attacks on Injured Workers seem to be escalating, and tales of WC Nurses posing as employees at doctors offices have been reported to be threatening, intimidating and terrorizing injured workers at doctor’s appointments.  SMH…. thinking, ‘NOT IN THIS COUNTRY!!’

InjuredWorkersUniting!  SilentNoMore!

Share the link.  We’ll create another directory with Injured Worker reviews of the accuracy of their content, in due course.

Follow them all, and search their sites to see which ones actually bother to report on WorkComp Fraud legitimately…. the carriers seem to have the most indictments, and employees weigh in at less than 1%.  Follow that money trail.

JOIN IN THE DISCUSSIONS ON LINKEDIN.…  and tell your friends and neighbors; your governments already know.

You might also peruse these blogs for some potentially inspiring thoughts for actions….  “It takes a village.”

MyWorkCompCoach.com

AskAboutWorkersCompGravyTrains.com

“I BLOG, THEREFORE I AM A WORKCOMP SURVIVOR.  BE ONE , TOO.”

What’s YOUR WorkComp Story?

–It’s a simple questionnaire; remember, once we know you’re in WorkComp, WE KNOW ALL THE DETAILS OF YOUR STORY.  IT’S AN OPEN SECRET.

#DodgeTheRads