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Wesley M. Lawrence

Wesley Lawrence’s Answers

15 total


  • What does the defense counsel do in a workers comp case on the insurance carriers team ?

    I was injured on the job as a CHHA lifting a hospice patient and ended up with plantar fasicitiis. I had an IME and then an MRI on my left foot. Got the written results and the insurance carrier wants me to go back to the podiatrist who performed ...

    Wesley’s Answer

    From a defense attorney's perspective:

    It means that the carrier has retained an attorney to protect its interests in a likely similar way that you hired one to protect yours. You can ask your attorney more about this. He/she may know the defense counsel and offer some insight. It is not always because the carrier doesn't trust you that it hires an attorney. Settlement issues, Medicare set-asides, adjusters working a jurisdiction their not overly familiar with, and lots of other issues cause a carrier to get an attorney involved. Frankly, having defense counsel on board can often facilitate resolution of issues and settlement of claims more quickly as they typically have fewer open cases than a typical adjuster.

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  • Can a L&I attorney keep taking 30% out of every single time loss check??

    I put into L&I from all my paychecks when i was working. It seems unfair that every time a check finally comes in after waiting months and months it really becomes small. I thought these kind of cases are you pay when it is settled. Help

    Wesley’s Answer

    Hopefully, this is something you should feel free to ask your attorney. You may want to look at the fee agreement you signed and see if he is collecting fees consistent with your agreement. There are many fee arrangements in WC claims, since unlike a civil lawsuit you may recover money/benefits at various points throughout your claim, not just settlement or post-verdict. If the carrier disputed the wage loss benefits and through your attorney's efforts you're now receiving those benefits, it seems reasonable for him/her to be paid.

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  • Can my home be foreclosed while i'm on workmans compensation benefits?

    i've been on workers comp since 2010. i have fallen behind alot on house payments due to the decrease of wages. i've sent in all loan modification papers and have been denied. i'm a single mom with two kids and the sale date is for june 26 2012

    Wesley’s Answer

    In my state, Vermont, for example, there is no prohibition on a bank foreclosing against a borrower collecting workers' compensation. It is a common worrry for claimants, especially when a claim is denied.

    Other than working with your lender, perhaps it may be possible to receive an advance of weekly benefits, i.e. permanency benefits, in a lump sum or you may consider settling the indemnity/non-medical portion of your claim if it is reasonable to do so.

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  • I have recently been released due to mmi and they already are offering 18% voluntery tender.

    I know that my permanent restrictions are that i cannot lift more than 25lbs and had a injury to my cervical spine at c5,c6. I have had surgery as well and now am in a financial bind. NJM is the insurance company and they have already offered a vo...

    Wesley’s Answer

    Do you contest that you have reached medical end result? Have you returned to work? In many states, including Vermont, you have the option to get your own rating at no cost to you. Typically, employers/carriers will not (or cannot be ordered to) pay a lump sum absent an agreement to the amount of permanency.

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  • Can I legally receive workman's comp. after I retired.

    I worked for local govenrnent , suffered an injured , received workman's com and months later while still on workman's comp. retired.

    Wesley’s Answer

    If the injury arose out of and in the course of your employment, meaning you were hurt on the job before retirement, and it was reported timely (usually within a set period of time that varies by state), the fact of your retirement should not prevent you from claiming benefits, namely medical benefits. Where I would see as a challenge would be on wage loss benefits because if you're retired, you're not losing wages.

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  • If I got hurt on the job and put a claim in through worker comp. Can my employer take my vacation/sick time away?

    I fell and twisted my ankle while running after a client.

    Wesley’s Answer

    In Vermont, at least, an employer cannot take any action against you for filing a claim. Here, that may translate into preventing them from taking away sick time or vacation time.

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  • Been denied wc since 4/2010, judge needs to make ruling soon breifs filed on 8/2011. is lawyer entitled to 20% of interest

    and penalities been 18 months since i accident and i had spinal fusion

    Wesley’s Answer

    In Vermont there may be a separate award to cover attorney's fees and litigation costs, so it doesn't cut into what you what you get. You will need to look at the fee agreement you entered into. Here, most claimant's attorneys take a percentage of the whole award and are not content with the separate award of fees and costs granted by the Department of Labor.

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  • Can my settlement from workers comp lump sum will affect my unemployment befenits

    Hurt my self in 2009 doctor send back to work after 9 months with restrictions, company let me go do to the conditions work 18 years with them, now I will get a lump sump award, will this lump sum affect my unemployment benefits?

    Wesley’s Answer

    In Vermont, you cannot collect wage replacement (temporary total) and unemployment at the same time. If the settlement is a lump sum for your injury, you may be ok, but you must discuss this with your lawyer or one licensed in your state.

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  • How long should I have to wait for a doctor's appointment for worker's comp?

    I was injured @ work & never given a list of drs to see. I went for treatment on my own after my boss's RISK mgmnt denied my claim. I appealed to state & won. I received noticed that my boss was appealing and asked for a phone conference. I retain...

    Wesley’s Answer

    You have an attorney, talk to him/her and ask that all avenues are pursued to get the treatment you may need.

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  • Workers comp,and third party

    i work for a professional company that picks patients up,and i tripped up there stairs,busted my knee and ankle. i'm recieviing workes comp,and i have a lawyer now,but the first lawyer told me its not worth sueing the third party,why is that. if i...

    Wesley’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Sounds like if you don't go after the negligent third party, the WC insurer may file suit on your behalf. The only downside of the so-called third-party claim, at least in VT, is that you may have to pay back the dollar amount of WC benefits you get from whoever caused your injury. If you recover more money from the people that caused your injury than from WC, you may be able to keep the difference. In other words if you get $5k in comp and $10k from whoever caused your injury, you may only be able to keep $10k total, not $15k. Talk to your attorney.

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