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Gerald Gregory Lutkenhaus
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Gerald Lutkenhaus’s Answers

2,227 total


  • Does my work comp carrier have the right to attend my physician appointments?

    The insurance adjuster assigned an RN Case Manager to my case, the RN wants to attend my doctor's appointments with me, she stated to be my "patient advocate". I am in the health care field and my wife is an RN, I do not need a "patient advocate"...

    Gerald’s Answer

    I would only add in Virginia it depends upon the doctor. As a practical matter the doctor wants his bills paid. So, if he or she can get the Nurse Case Manager (NCM) on board with his/her course of treatment then the doctor may feel things will go more smoothly. The dangerous area is that some doctors allow the NCM to medically manage the case. By and large most doctors in Virginia will talk to the NCM. Also, the doctors do not like to do things twice. So, when they explain the plan of treatment they will probably bring in the NCM to explain the plan so that they can get the treatment authorized (whether it is therapy, MRI's, an operation, etc.). Beware of the NCM who wants your doctor to refer you to the NCM's favorite doctor. You need to consult as Virginia WC Claimant's lawyer to know your rights.

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  • Do I have to talk to the Insurance carriers attorney if they call me.

    I have a work comp hearing and the adjuster told me their attorney would contact me. I do not have legal representation yet, do I have to talk to them?

    Gerald’s Answer

    Their attorney wishes to talk to you to find out what your testimony will be at the hearing. You do not have to talk to the insurance company attorney unless he takes your deposition under oath. You need to discuss your case with a Virginia WC Claimant's attorney as quickly as possible.

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  • Can someone get widows benefits and retirement Social Security at the Same time. Will one or both be reduced?

    My mom is currently receiving approx $1400 a month in widows benefits (She has been drawing it for about two years). She is due to reach the full retirement age of 66 in two years. Can she draw both the widows benefits and social security at the s...

    Gerald’s Answer

    She can draw whichever benefit is higher but she cannot draw both. I hope this answers your inquiry.

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  • I have a hearing date scheduled for September, 2015 should I have legal representation for this hearing?

    Complex Worker's Comp case involving a communicable disease.

    Gerald’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    If you have a hearing set this means your claim has been denied by the insurance company. You have to "prove" by medical evidence that this "exposure" occurred at work and "caused" your disease. "Other causes" must be ruled out by your doctor. At a minimum you need to have your evidence and their evidence reviewed by an experienced WC lawyer.

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  • Can I suing my Employer Insurance co for tortious action involving the carrier for giving me the wrong medical care long story !

    First treatment was ER then PT after that I had a referral to a Orthopedic by the Insurance Carrier and a long treatment there without getting better then the treating doctor there quit after contacting the Insurance carrier by phone and E mail be...

    Gerald’s Answer

    Virginia WC law works as follows. You have an injury. You go to an ER or Patient First. Then that provider refers you to a specialist. If you accept this referral that doctor becomes your treating doctor who is supposed to manage your medical care. You indicate that specialist left. At that point the insurer is supposed to provide a panel of three (3) doctors so you can choose a new specialist, but sometimes the insurer refuses to do this. Your remedy is to take it to the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission for relief.

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  • Work injury that left me disable wrong medical treatment from doctor and worker comp and employer insurance carrier

    nerve damage to my leg which if treated right wouldn't have been disable Can I suing the workers comp insurance company and the doctor forcing me to go there and I had the wrong medical treating for over a year

    Gerald’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues. (1) You can bring a medical malpractice claim against the doctor if you can prove he caused you harm. (2) The workers compensation insurance company is responsible for any worsening of your accident caused injury due to the erroneous medical treatment. You can consult a medical malpractice lawyer but as a practical matter your claim will not be considered unless there is clear evidence of negligence and you have suffered more than $100,000.00 in damages.

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  • How can I qualify for disability?

    I am a 19 year old female and due to my mental illnesses I am unable to function in public so it prevents me from getting and holding a job. I see a therapist and psychiatrist twice a month and I have been diagnosed with anxiety, depression, OCD a...

    Gerald’s Answer

    I practice Social Security Disability law in Virginia. I can tell you winning a disability case for a 19 year old whose disability is primarily anxiety and depression is very difficult. This is so because it takes 100% support by your treating health care provides to prove you cannot function in "any gainful employment" in the the national economy. Oftentimes, this type of disorder can be managed with medication. You should also contact DARS (the Virginia Department of Aging and Rehabilitative Services (804) 588-3333. This agency provides training and job support for anyone with a disability.

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  • Need to know the next steps that will happen and prepare for investigation for Food Stamp Fraud

    In June 2014, I got a position making 11:50 an hour, called DSS and told the girl that answered the info and asked if that would effect anything. I was told no, during my 6 month check up, I answered there was no changes to report, which was true....

    Gerald’s Answer

    You can probably work this out. However, if you are concerned about a charge of welfare fraud, you may want to talk to a criminal lawyer about possible criminal penalties. If you are without fault, you may want to talk to your local Congressman.

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  • Worker's compensation

    Can I file a claim even if i didn't report it.I didn't find out i had one until I took physical for another job so now I have to have surgery due to the hernia i got from the job i resigned from

    Gerald’s Answer

    I have practiced Virginia Workers Compensation law for 35 years and I can tell you that your claim has a lot of problems. The rule is an injury must be reported to an employer within 30 days. Most employers require "immediate" reporting of injuries. You indicate you did not know you had a hernia until you took a physical on another job. It will probably be impossible now for a doctor to link your hernia to an accident on your former job. Technically you can file a claim with the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission within two years of the date of your accident. However, the insurer for your former employer will deny the claim. I don't think on your facts a lawyer will take your case.

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  • What to do when the company fails to file injury report with industrial commission (Virginia)?

    The company Contract Claims Services is a part of AAFEs (My place of employment), they mail me a check for WC voluntarily. Unfortunately they didn't report the incident for some odd reason. What happens now?

    Gerald’s Answer

    You have two (2) years from the date of your accident to file a claim with the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission. if the insurer does not file an Agreement form accepting the claim, then you "must" file a claim of compensation with the Commission. You can do this online. Call 1-877-664-2566 for instructions.

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