Skip to main content

Workers Comp: ILLINOIS Nurse, fell at work 9/27/12, injured right shoulder.

Chicago, IL |

As per the MRI/MRA, ther were right humeral head (shoulder/humerus) contusion, bursitis, small significant labral tear. Elected my own choice of ortho doc who diagnosed me with all of the above, in addition my medical records indicate that I also have impingement syndrome, possible bicep tendon tear/rupture. Failed conservative treatments such as therapies and injections. Ortho doc said after my arthroscopic surgery (will be done to evaluate internal structures of my shoulder to be sure of the abnormal pathology), there is a very good chances that I would come back to work without restrictions based on his experience. Does that mean after MMI, 0% rating as well? If that is so, then I won't get compensated for PPD? Can I open my medical claims at least?

Also, if I decide to leave my current employment for which I still work with light duty desk work restrictions only after I am released by my ortho doc, does that complicate the claim/case? If I won't have restrictions then I'd rather work somewhere else where I could function better instead of being a floor nurse, such as home health care, etc. for the reason that the type of work of a nurse in those companies are lighter as compared to rehabilation facilities where I am currently employed. I am only 31 yrs old by the way. Income the year prior to the injury was roughly about $65 k if even necessary in order to evaluate/answer my questions. Thank you.

+ Read More

Attorney answers 4

Posted

You need to discuss these excellent questions with a well qualified Workers' Compensation Lawyer from AVVO or elsewhere. We would all be happy to provide a free consultation.

Jordan Margolis, President
The Margolis Firm PC
55 W. Monroe, Suite 3555
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312-236-2201
jmargolis@themargolisfirm.com

When An Accident Changes Your Life, We Pursue Justice For You

Legal Disclaimer: If this information has been helpful, please indicate by clicking the thumbs-up icon below. Mr. Margolis is licensed to practice law in Illinois. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. You may contact the writer with these links: jmargolis@themargolisfirm.com http://www.themargolisfirm.com When an accident changes your life, we pursue justice for you.

Posted

Pay no attention to this impairment rating nonsense. Your case is still valuable and, while you may understand more medical than many claimants, you do not understand workers' comp like we attorneys do. Trust me, no one wants to understand comp as it is arcane. Don't go this alone.

I think a competent attorney could put some money in your pocket that is due you no matter that you've returned to work. That is irrelevant. Many factors determine value on a comp case, including your job, age, injury, rate of pay, and treatment.

Fees are limited to 20% and consults are free.

Stephen L. Hoffman
Law Office of Stephen L. Hoffman LLC
Chicago, IL
773-944-9737
Email: stephen@hofflawyer.com
Website: www.hofflawyer.com
Blog: www.hofflawyer.com/blog/

This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.

Asker

Posted

I see, I thought the impairment rating is the actual basis to determine PPD. I was concerned, because my surgeon is pretty determined and hypothetically if I reached MMI, and without restrictions, if would have rated 0% AMA, I would still get compensation for PPD, and open medical benefits, or ultimately settlement. Now I have peace of mind. Not having any medical benefits for this shoulder injury concerns me, Blue Cross Blue Shield already denied my health insurance application due to this injury considered as pre-existing condition, now I am on I-CHIP.

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Posted

The Act, under the 2011 amendments now requires the arbitrators to use AMA impairment ratings as ONE factor in determining disability. Notice impairment and disability are not exactly the same definition, making this all completely impossible to sort through. The short answer is surgeons think they are wonderful and they are but they cannot make you perfect in most cases. Operate on a shoulder and you will have some deficits. That's why you need a lawyer to help you along. And the fact that you may need future medical care is a huge factor to consider prior to settling. Definitely something you should consider.

Posted

In most instances surgery will result in an impairment do to it being invasive in nature. Best to retain an attorney who can guide your car to a proper resolution. Medical can be kept open through a hearing.
Michael Lebovitz
Attorney at Law
3250 N. Arlington Heights Rd, Suite 102
Arlington Heights, Illinois 60004
(847) 590-1795

This information should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. It is not intended to solicit clients and does not constitute any type of transaction. Michael Lebovitz expressly disclaims all liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on the information provided. No attorney-client relationship exists without a signed Attorney Client Agreement.

Asker

Posted

Pertaining to the current Workers Comp Law in Illinois which was adopted in Sept 2011. Is the shoulder considered part of the arm or body as a whole? Based on Illinois case laws, how much do shoulders typically get awarded? I understand there is a wide range of factors to consider to determine that. But I couldnt seem to find anything in the websites as far as the awards and settlements for shoulders after 2011.

Michael Lebovitz

Michael Lebovitz

Posted

Person as a whole. Ranges vary but workers comp carriers are unwilling to pay top dollar without representation.

Posted

I have found that many orthopedic doctors will opine that after their procedures, the patient will return to work with little or no disability. While that is the desired result, it is not always the case. Unfortunately, I have had many cases where a disability exists after surgery. Each client and each case must stand on its own depending on your unique set of facts.

MMI, or maximum medical improvement, is that status that the patient receives from his or her doctor when the condition stabilizes to its fullest extent. It does NOT mean that there is no disability. The eventual impairment rating does NOT equal disability. The concept of disability in workers' compensation law concerns itself with how the injured employee's condition affects his or her function at work. It looks into loss of job function, the need for future medical care, the need for future vocational re-training and a whole host of other items.

The 0% impairment rating that your mention is from the AMA Guides to Impairment ratings which is but one factor in the eventual calculation of your disability. Regardless of the AMA rating (if one is given), there may very well be permanant partial disability (PPD).

At the end of your treatment and after you return to work for a period of time your permanancy can be assessed. As attorneys, we gather all of your medical records, set a meeting to go over the records with you and discuss our settlement plan.

Feel free to contact my office if you wish to ask additional questions.

Marc B. Stookal
312/443-1331
mbstookal@nsgclaw.com
www.illinoisinjurylawyer.com

Asker

Posted

Sir, how would you answer my question about employment, should I leave or resign right after I am said to have reached MMI? What are situations or examples of permanency besides claims on permanent scarring related to surgery?

Marc Bennett Stookal

Marc Bennett Stookal

Posted

I would not suggest leaving your job upon MMI. After a surgical case I recommend waiting a reasonable period of time before changing jobs or settling your case. Sometimes, after the return to work, additional unforeseen medical issues arise. If you are at a new employer I have seen the WC carrier argue that you may have been injured at the new place of employment and they refuse to cover additional treatment. You may need certain restrictions that only come to light after your return to work. If you are at a new job, they may not provide them to you. If you are at your current job, it can be reasonably argued that they are responsible for any job modifications that you might need. I don't envision you working at your current job for an extended period; just enough time to make sure that you are fully healed and that no more treatment is needed. Examples of permanency would include loss of upper extremity strength, loss of range of motion, continuing pain, the inability to work an entire day. The list could certainly contain other conditions that prevent a full regular return to work. Of course, you and the doctor hope and expect for a full and complete healing, but, unfortunately, that is not always obvious at the return to work time. Scarring also can be compensable under the Illinois Workers' Compensation Act. Thanks for your follow up question.