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William Gregory Pope
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William Pope’s Answers

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  • Back Injury w/ 2 herniated disc (1 encroaching cord), 3 bulging disc, spinal stenosis..workers comp claim..

    I hurt my upper back last year(Oct) at work, but claim was denied the same day because i wasn't doing physical work activity, but the pain went away. I hurt it again begining of this yr, supevisor filed claim, talked to nurse on phone, iced it for...

    William’s Answer

    While your past chiropractic treatment is relevant, it was to a different level of the spine. It should not be a huge problem in your case. However, you should consider hiring an attorney because you have had a least three accidents. You may need someone to assist you in making sure that the employer provides you with a suitable light duty job within your restrictions so that you can avoid re-injury.

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  • What medical records does my W/C adjuster want access to?

    My workers comp adjuster wants me to sign a medical release form. Is she asking for ALL of my records before my injry, or just my records for my current injury? I don't feel comfortable releasing all of my records to her. I don't mind her having m...

    William’s Answer

    She wants all of your medical records without limitation, but she can't have them. Under Georgia law, you do not have to sign a blank medical release. You should never sign a blank medical authorization in a Georgia workers' compensation case. If you are claiming entitlement to workers' compensation benefits in Georgia, you have to execute a separate WC-207 Patient Authorization for each medical provider that has treated you for your injury. You also have to execute a separate WC-207 Patient Authorization for each medical provider who has provided treatment in the past for the same condition for which you now claim workers' compensation benefits or any "reasonably related" condition. For example, if your workers' compensation injury relates to your back and you have had previous treatment to the spine at any level in the past, you should execute a WC-207 for the medical provider that provided that past treatment. Always sign and date a WC-207 in blue ink so you can tell it is an original. Good luck with your case.

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  • Can I sue or get my money back or compensation for this?

    they had my car for 8 mths..I didn't receive no call..I knew it would be alot of work 1500$ so I didn't want to bother them...and because I had a truck that I was riding..now gas is too high..and they have my Volvo..I can't get to work..I couldn'...

    William’s Answer

    It sounds like you could make a claim in Magistrate Court for your money. Typically, you don't need a lawyer to sue someone in Magistrate Court. Go to the Magistrate Court in the county where the business is and file a Statement of Claim. You will have to pay to file the Statement of Claim and to have the Sheriff or Marshall serve it on the defendant. Take proof of payment with you to court. Good luck.

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  • Hello, I have had two sugeries for 2 herniated discs. The most recent was a spinal fusion. Now my doc is sending me back in pain

    What can I do? I know I have to try but im always in pain, and still taking meds. My lawyer doesnt seem too interested in fighting back since he is chumy with the doctors.

    William’s Answer

    I am sorry you are having these problems. There are several things that you should do. First, rather than seeking out advice here, contact your attorney and see if you two can get on the same page. Your attorney knows all of the facts of the case. Those of us answering this question only know a small portion based upon your description above. Your attorney is in the best position to strategize the next move in your case. If you are concerned your treating doctor sending you back to work, see if he or she will order a functional capacity test (FCE) to determine your physical abilities. Based upon the results of the FCE, the doctor might change his or her opinion regarding your ability to work or the suitability of the job that your employer has you doing. If you want another medical opinion, ask your attorney if you can use your one-time claimant's independent medical examination with a doctor of your choice to be paid for by the workers' compensation insurance company. Depending upon the results of the IME, you could then move for a change of physician to the IME doctor or another doctor. If you are in pain and there is no more surgery that will help you, you might ask your surgeon to consider a referral to a pain management clinic. Good luck to you. I hope you can get the help you need.
    Sincerely,
    Greg Pope

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  • I have been out of work for 10 months on workers comp. If I return to work, can I recoup any of my lost salary and wages.

    I had two surgeries for 2 separate injuries, separated by 2 years, both are being treated. 2013 was last injury that cause me to stay out of work for 10 months with lost salary. If I go back to work, can I recoup any of my lost salaries.

    William’s Answer

    Under Georgia law, you may not recoup full lost salary or wages. You are entitled to income benefits known as temporary total disability benefits while you are out of work in the amount of two-thirds of your average weekly wage capped at most likely either $500 or $525 per week depending on your date of accident. If you go back to work and you make less money than you were making before and the reason for your reduced wage is due to your continued disability, you are entitled to temporary partial disability benefits which is two-thirds of the difference between your pre-injury average weekly wage and your new wage. TPD benefits are capped at most likely either $334 per week or $350 per week depending on your accident date. If you are no longer entitled to either TTD or TPD benefits, you may be entitled to permanent partial disability benefits if your doctor issued a permanent partial impairment rating. You may receive PPD benefits at the same time you are working, and they would be in the same amount that you received in TTD benefits.

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  • If I was hurt on the job and statute of limitations ran out what are my options for payment?

    I was hurt at work in 2007. My supervisor never put in any paperwork and since an ace bandage was working to elevate pain in my foot, we (the supervisor and I) never pursued the injury. Over the years, my pain grew worse but I never equated it to ...

    William’s Answer

    If you did not miss any time from work due to your injury between 2007 and your February 2013 surgery, you may be able to argue a fictional new accident or gradual worsening injury that gives you a February 2013 accident date. However, you would have to file a WC 14 before the one year anniversary of the first day that you missed from work. You need a lawyer very quickly. Let us know if we can help.

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  • Worker's Comp assigned dr says there is nothing else they can do for me...what do I do now?

    Hello, I was injured at work about 7 months ago. I have 2 herniated disks as a result of a work place accident. I am still in severe pain on most days even after trying physical therapy, medications (which most I can not tolerate, epidural steriod...

    William’s Answer

    Unless your treating doctor has given you a regular duty release, you are still entitled to income benefits. You need a lawyer to assist you. Let me know if I can help.

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  • I was injured on the job over 5 years ago, I have received a settlement some time ago, Am I eligible for SSD?

    I have not worked since my injury (over 5 years ago), and things are getting tough now because of my costs for meds and Dr visit and normal living expenses are using up all my money, I have tried to get a job but when they get to the physical requ...

    William’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    I am sorry that you are experiencing these problems. Your settlement likely reads that you have no reasonable expectation of becoming Medicare eligible within the next 30 months. I don't think a workers' compensation settlement can preclude you from applying for SSDI benefits. If the language in the settlement purports to do that, I would question the validity of that language. However, the best course of action for you is to make an appointment with an experienced attorney who handles Social Security Disability cases. Show him or her the settlement language, and proceed according to his or her advice. Good luck to you. I hope you can find the help you need.

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  • What is the GA mileage reimbursement rate for doctor visits in 2013 for workers comp. Is there a minimum round trip distance?

    Is there a standardized mileage form that I would need to fill out? My WC adjuster sent me a form from North Carolina but my claim is here in GA.

    William’s Answer

    There is no official Georgia State Board of Workers' Compensation form for mileage reimbursement. However, the best practice is to provide the address where you started and the address of the medical provider where you went and add up the actual round trip mileage, which is reimbursed at 40 cents per mile. If you had parking expense or allowable meal expense, keep the receipts and attach a copy to the mileage reimbursement request, seeking full reimbursement for those expenses. The insurer has 15 days to issue a check reimbursing you for mileage. Remember, you are entitled to ACTUAL mileage, not mileage as calculated by the adjuster using a website that provides directions. Good luck and let me know if I can help.

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  • Cant get workers comp to return calls was told if we got a lawyer richard no longer works at walmart

    richard fell in 2010 and broke his wrist had 2 surgery did not know that pain in same arm was rc tear he had total shoulder replacement dr also said at that time he also may have tear on right side so dr about right shoulder in oct 2013 said rt sh...

    William’s Answer

    I am sorry that you are experiencing this problem. Unfortunately, Wal-Mart historically can be difficult to deal with in workers' compensation cases. It can be especially problematic if there is a culture at the store where Richard works in which an employee feels threatened for protecting his rights under workers' compensation. Unfortunately, there is no cause of action for workers' compensation retaliation if Wal-Mart did fire Richard after he got an attorney; however, in 17 years of practice, I have rarely seen employers fire employees for getting a workers' comp attorney. Usually, the presence of an attorney fighting for your rights helps you keep your job. You definitely need an attorney in this case in order to get Richard the medical and income benefits that the law allows. Let me know if I can help.

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