Sep
24
2010
0

Annual Meeting of The State Bar of California – Monterey

What has two thumbs and loves to hear itself talk?  THIS GUY!!!

What has two thumbs and loves to hear itself talk? THIS GUY!!!

There was a great turn out this morning to the “How to Obtain an Accurate PD Rating with the AMA Guides” put on by the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar.  We covered a lot of ground in just two hours, from the DEU perspective presented by Annalisa Faina and Barry Knight entitled “Anatomy of Rating”, to Mark Gearheart’s “Substantial Medical Evidence to Support a Permanent Disability Rating,” and my own presentation on “Litigating Ogilvie.”  There was a lively discussion on the state of Almaraz/Guzman, Blackledge, and Ogilvie. [1][2]

Thanks to everyone who e-mailed me asking for the cases cited during our presentations.  I’ll be uploading them shortly.

Tonight is the “2010 Steve Jimenez Special Recognition Awards” honoring:

  • Lifetime Achievement: The Honorable Pamela Foust (Ret.)
  • Judge of the Year: The Honorable Jorja FrankHon. Jorja Frank
  • Applicant Attorney of the Year: Marc Marcus
  • Defense Attorney of the Year: Michael Marks

If you’re attending tonight, please stop me and say hello!  (I’ve got a name tag and everything)

  1. Lively as in “barely civil” []
  2. I’m kidding! []
Aug
19
2010
0

Guzman is affirmed by the 6th Appellate!

The end for Milpitas USD?

The end for Milpitas USD?

Update: Download Milpitas United School District v. WCAB and Guzman, 6th Appellate District Court H034853, ADJ3341185, SJO0254688!

Looks like Milpitas Unified School District v. WCAB and Guzman is here to stay. [1] The 6th Appellate Court has just affirmed the WCAB’s decision in full.

Where does this leave us?  Well, under “Almaraz/Guzman II” we need to get a “strict AMA” and either side can obtain an “Almaraz/Guzman II” opinion from the doctors based upon rebuttal evidence, with the Judge being the final arbiter.

What else does this mean?  I’m probably going to break my personal record for the most doctor depositions in a single month.

Click here for more in depth coverage of Guzman!

  1. Photo courtesy of funkandjazz []
Sep
04
2009
1

Ogilvie II, Almaraz/Guzman II – Reader Digest Versions

Ogilvie and Almaraz/Guzman - lets cut to the chase

Ogilvie and Almaraz/Guzman - let's cut to the chase

First off, if you haven’t already downloaded Ogilvie II and Almaraz/Guzman II, do so now!

As I mentioned previously, each of these cases is about 50 pages long, so there is clearly no substitute for reading them for yourself.  However, here’s Ogilvie II and Almaraz/Guzman II in five sentences:[1]

  • Ogilvie v. WCAB II:
    • The WCAB ruled the original Ogilvie (I) formula is still valid.
    • The WCAB appears to have created a right to reopen a case for “individualized proportional earnings loss.”
    • Vocational testimony is not an appropriate way to dispute the DFEC portion of the 2005 Permanent Disability Rating Schedule.
    • (Bonus Dissent Summary: The lone dissent by Caplane says that vocational testimony should be considered proper rebuttal to an entire permanent disability rating.)
  • Almaraz/Guzman II:
    • The WCAB ruled that a doctor must issue reports within the “four corners” of the AMA Guides 5th Edition to comply with Labor Code Section 4660(c). [2]
    • However, either party may obtain rebuttal evidence in the form of supplemental reports and depositions regarding the use of any other chapter, method, or table within the AMA Guides.
    • (Bonus Dissent Summary:  The dissenting opinion from Brass, Caplane, and Moresi says they would affirm their decision in Almaraz/Guzman I.)

What do these cases mean for the practitioner?

  • The WCAB has created a new right to reopen for a higher than expected “individualized proportional earnings loss.”
  • The Ogilvie Mathematical Proof of 18 Point Add-Ons still stands.
  • I see even more doctor depositions in my future.
  • My phone is going to be ringing off the hook tomorrow.
  1. Photo courtesy of Scallop Holden []
  2. Here, the phrase “four corners of the AMA Guides” just means the parties are restricted to the actual text of the AMA Guides and cannot use analogies and evidence from outside the AMA Guides. []
Sep
03
2009
7
Jun
27
2009
1

Guest Article from Vocational Expert Emily Tincher

Always room for guest articles at PDRater!

Always room for guest articles at PDRater!

Emily Tincher has recently provided a vocational expert’s perspective on the Ogilvie and Almaraz/Guzman decisions.

Have you got an article on workers’ compensation you’d like to see published?  Drop me a line and let me know.[1]

Thanks Emily!

P.S. For those of who keeping score at home, this is my 200th post!!!  That’s 200 posts in 357 days or roughly a post every 1.7 days.

  1. Photo courtesy of Stephen Cummings []

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