Saturday, September 29, 2012

Self protection for injured workers

As some of you are now aware,  the sensitivities and interpretation of benefits for injured workers has become more stringent. Any person injured on the job and who is not totally disabled has an obligation to search for work consitent with their disabilities and skill level. What this means is that since the "Axel case", the burden has been  placed on workers to demonstrate they have made sufficient attempts to look for work consistent with their deminished abilities. Failure to make such a "work search" has been found to be detrimental to receiving contiued indemnity benefits and in some cases even prevent the continued receipt of medical bnefits.

It is therefore incumbant upon the injured worker to be able to document this "work search" with written copies of applications, written rejections and details of the kinds of work with the specifics of the search. A mere review of the classified or computer searches is not necessarily convincing. Registrating with the local " One Stop" division of the Unemployment Office near you is a start. Diligent follow up with same and actual filing for work with applications and records are being requested by most compensation law judges.

Do not be complacent or acquiencent. If you are questioned in court you are required to present evidence of such work searches. Oral statements without physical evidence is not effective evidence. A word to the wise, protect your benfits. Keep written logs of your "work searches" and be prepared for investigations by the insurance companies. Do not sign statements without discussing your rights with an attorney. Be honest but be aware. The free ride has ended. The insurance industry has adopted the Regan credo, " Trust but Verify" which has become Prove or Be Disbelieved.

As always,  note our legal disclaimer,  this blog is not legal advise but merely informative and for educational benfits. Legal rights are best protected by retention and following the advise of your legal cousel. 

East End Law

When last we blogged , Eliot Levine and Associates was looking to open an East End Workers' Compensation and Social Security Disability intake center. After much discussion with medical professions in the east end and the slowing down of those making the trip east; we have decided to try other venues for client retention. We have viewed Dan's Papers , the North and South Ferry's from Shelter Island and are presently exploring additional options. We are still interested in providing legal services to injured workers throughout Suffolk County but,  have begun to focus on using our present facility , 1455 veterans' Highway, Hauppauge, New York 11749 as a jumping off point.

As an update from information recently gleened from continuing legal education courses : all users of the new communications technology should be wary and be cognizant that your e-mail, social media and cellular communications are not necessarily private and may be subject to subpeona or discovery.  What this means in simple terms is that social blogging, transmitting pictures and the like to friends and the general world can and is being reviewed by others from defense counsel to a whole range of individuals and companies. The attorney client relationship no longer necessarily protects information transmitted when the instruments of transmission are not private themselves, , i.e., business servers, family joint passworded accounts,  etc. A word to the wise, if there is something you transmit that you might not want revealed to unintended recients do not transmit it.  Just for the moment, consider recent pictures of the royal couples vacation. Privacy is elusive.

As always , this blog is informational and not legal advise. A formal face to face retainer and personal discussion relating to your individual problem within the fields usually handled by such legal counsel is always best and is always subject to the locale, time and facts presented.