I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change: Latest Updates on Amending The Compassionate Care Act

At the end of 2018, the original sponsors of the Compassionate Care Act, New York State Senator Savino (D) and Assemblymember Gottfried (D), introduced legislation that will require the following public health insurance plans in New York State to cover medical marijuana:

  • Medicaid
  • Child Health Insurance Plan (CHIP)
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) Program, and
  • Family Health Plus Plan.

The bill remained inactive in the fall and has yet to be re-introduced since January 9, 2019 when the New York State legislative session …

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Jurisdictional Speed Bumps in the Trucking Industry

When are Claims Compensable in New York Workers’ Compensation Law?

Workers’ Compensation claims are usually straight-forward – a claimant is injured on the job and brings a claim for benefits. Sometimes, though, claims are not always that simple at the outset. A claimant may live in one state, and be injured in a different state, while working for an employer whose base is in a third state. These situations can often arise in the trucking industry, and can leave employers wondering where the claimant will …

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Recent Trends an “Inextricably Intertwined’ Universe

Oftentimes we see applicants who sustain a specific injury but continue to work thereafter and simultaneously developed a cumulative trauma injury. When evaluating an applicant, the California Labor Code specifically requires a physician to determine what percentage of disability was caused by each industrial injury. This is consistent with the new system of apportionment under SB 899 and the enactment of Labor Code section 4663 and section 4664 which is based on causation. This means that each distinct industrial injury must be separately compensated based …

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PFME: What Exactly Does it Mean and Why is it Important to Understand?

As we all know when a workers’ compensation claim is brought forward, the claimant needs to prove two basic points: (1) that he or she has an injury or illness and (2) that the illness or injury was obtained while in the course and scope of his or her employment. For a claim that is accepted from its inception, the above two points are generally easy to find in the initial reporting to the client However, the aspect that is generally overlooked is that a …

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Is a Workplace Injury Caused by a Non-Occupational Medical Condition Compensable? Connecticut Appellate Court says “Yes” in Clements v. Aramark Corporation

It is a fundamental principle of Connecticut workers’ compensation law that in order for an injury to be compensable, it must occur in the course of and arise out of the claimant’s employment. In the recent Appellate Court decision of Clements v. Aramark Corp., the court considered whether an employee who fell and injured herself at work due to an unrelated medical condition met this burden. In a critical decision that overturned both the Trial Commissioner and Compensation Review Board (CRB), the court found in …

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The Gig is Up: Couriers in the Gig Economy are not Employees in New York

The gig economy is an example of the changing workforce in our society. With that change comes the challenge of determining the employment status, under the law, of couriers who perform services in the gig economy. The appellate court in New York State recently tackled that challenge in Vega v. Postmates Inc., 162 A.D.3d 1337 (3d. Dept. 2018) and held that such couriers are not employees for the purpose of unemployment insurance benefits. Even though this claim pertained to unemployment insurance benefits, the Third …

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Exercising At Work Could Cause Claimants to Exercise their Rights to Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Many employers offer a wide variety of benefits to their employees, including on-site gym memberships. While it may be a benefit to the employee, it could lead to Workers’ Compensation liability to the employer. Generally, for an accident to be compensable, it must both occur in the course of employment and arise out of the employment. In order to find that an accidental injury occurred in the course of employment, the injury must have been received while the employee was doing the work for which …

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Does a Denial of a “Defective” RB-89 Constitute a Denial of Due Process?

Recently, the Workers’ Compensation legal community has seen a series of decisions issued by the Workers’ Compensation Board that seem to mark a change in policy on behalf of the Workers Compensation Board. Specifically, the decisions have focused around one crucial issue- does a party’s failure to properly and fully completely fill out the required form to maintain an application for board review or rebuttal (RB-89 or RB-89.1) render the entire application defective?

In a series of decisions, the Workers’ Compensation Board has seemed to …

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Difficulties and Questions Presented by the Board’s New Digital Audio Recordings

Since the inception of the statewide virtual hearing platform in March of this year, there have been many concerns over the efficiency and effectiveness of the new hearing process. One of the major concerns has been whether there will be a clear, concise, and easily accessible record of workers’ compensation hearings. The virtual hearing platform brought with it a digital audio recording system that records all workers’ compensation hearings verbatim. This system replaced the old system of a court stenographer being present for every hearing. …

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Know Your Client’s Special Preferences

For controverted workers’ compensation claims in New York, the issue of general versus special employment can be raised by your client as a defense to liability. The issue of general versus special employment usually arises in circumstances when the claimant is hired and paid by one employer but works at the location and under the direction of another employer. For instance, a claimant who works for a temporary staffing agency and is placed at assignments with several employers and is then injured at the site …

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