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What can I do? My workers Comp Attorney hung me out to dry.

West Palm Beach, FL |

I have had an open case for about 4 years now . I was going every year for my check up with the Dr to keep my file active . At the end of November My Attorney sent me a letter telling me to remember to see the rd . once a year to keep the file active . On Jan 8th 2013 I tried to make a Dr apt but was told I needed authorization so I contacted my Attorney ; s office and told them to get me the apt . I heard nothing for a week and called back and again was told they would call me back , again nothing . I just found out today I missed the one year date by 3 days and Atty office tells me they no longer represent me and that they sent me a certified letter but I never got a letter or a phone call telling me they were no longer handling it . Is this misrepresentation ? Can I do anything to keep case open

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Attorney answers 5

Best Answer

Just yesterday, a JCC (workers' comp judge) in another case ruled that the Statute of Limitations could not be held to bar the claim for medical care brought by an injured worker who requested a follow-up visit and where the doctor's office had submitted a written pre-pay authorization request directly to the adjuster before the SoL had run. The JCC ruled that the Carrier was estopped to deny benefits based on the SoL where they failed to act when they had a duty to do so and misled claimant to her detriment due to their omission until after time had run against the claimant.

I point this out bcz this is just one way that an experienced attorney might be able to ensure that your case remains open. You will, however, need to contact an attorney immediately to discuss your situation in detail. As you are learning, time is your biggest enemy in W/C cases, so please act now, before any more passes.

Ken Schwartz, Esq.
West Palm Beach, FL

Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.

Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.


Mr. Schwartz has provided the best answer for you. Find a lawyer who can make this argument for you and hopefully you will be able to avoid the SOL problem. But do it immediately. Time is not your friend on this.


You will have to discuss that with another attorney that handles malpractice but you were also aware of the dates so that may be a factor


Your lawyer cannot authorize a medical visit. All your lawyer can do is ask the insurance carrier on your behalf to authorize a visit. You may have an equitable argument to keep your case open, but you need to get a new lawyer working on it immediately if you can.

This answer is intended as general information and not as specific legal advice. If you want to have a free consultation with me, please contact me through AVVO.

Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.

Bobby L. Bollinger Jr.


If you were to make a malpractice claim against your lawyer one interesting fact you posted is that the lawyer sent you a letter in November to remind you but you apparently did not act on it until nearly two months later, on January 8. Your lawyer reminded you two months early so that you would have time to resolve a potential problem with authorization, but I am sure your lawyer probably expected you to be diligent. You were not diligent apparently, and now you are wanting to blame your lawyer for the problem.


I suggest that you personally go to the attorney's office and obtain a copy of the certified letter. Upon receipt of the letter, consult with an attorney as Mr. Connell suggested as well as a different workers compensation attorney. I suggest you do this ASAP.

Legal disclaimer: Legal analysis is for general information, based upon the limited facts provided. Comments are not intended to constitute binding legal advice. There is no attorney-client relationship formed as a result of this communication. The response provided shall not be relied upon as legal advice from the responding attorney and it is based solely upon the limited facts being provided to the responding attorney by the person posing the question. To the extent additional or different facts may exist, the response provided by the responding attorney might change. Responding attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Florida. As such, the response provided is based solely upon Florida law unless otherwise herein stated. If you find this information helpful, please check the "Up" arrow box below. If you wish to discuss your question(s), the response provided, or hiring me in a confidential setting, call (813) 413-8700.


In addition, don't forget the obvious , ask your lawyer for an explanation as to why they quit.
Joe D'Amico

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