Blog Posts in 2013

  • General Releases in Workers' Compensation Claims

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 13-Nov-2013

    General Releases are another matter altogether. In the majority of claims that are settled, the defense attorney will send over a release with varying language depending upon the attorney and the defense firm, but all variations upon a common theme, ergo, a release of all manner of claims that could ever possibly have arisen from the employment relationship. Of course, most of these potential ...
    Continue Reading
  • Stipulation and Agreement in Workers' Comp Claims

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 11-Nov-2013

    Once the Stipulation and Agreement is approved, the Employer/Insurer will have 20 days to mail the settlement checks, pursuant to O.C.G.A. Sec. 34-9-221 and Board Rule 221. (If the insurer's office is outside of the state of Georgia, the insurer will have 17 days.) The Employer/Insurer will issue two separate checks, one payable to the Employee/Claimant's attorney for attorney's fees ...
    Continue Reading
  • Two Types of Stipulation and Agreement Used to Settle Workers' Comp Claims

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 8-Nov-2013

    There are two types of Stipulation and Agreement that can be used to settle a Workers' Compensation claim; both are specifically authorized by O.C.G.A. Sec. 34-9-15, and both must be filed with the State Board. The first type is called a "liability stipulation;" the second is called a "no liability stipulation." As is clear from the name, the liability stipulation is used ...
    Continue Reading
  • How to Finalize a Workers' Compensation Settlement

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 6-Nov-2013

    Once a settlement has been reached, through mediation or through simple negotiations, the settlement must be approved by the State Board of Workers' Compensation. No agreement to settle a Workers' Compensation case in Georgia is enforceable until the settlement has been approved by the State Board. Accordingly, any party to the settlement is free to back out of the agreement until the ...
    Continue Reading
  • Workers' Compensation and Subrogation

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 23-Oct-2013

    In Workers' Compensation claims that also involve a third party tort claim that can be brought by or on behalf of the injured worker, such as an injury arising out of an automobile collision caused by a third party, the Employer/Insurer has a statutorily granted right of subrogation for Workers' Compensation benefits paid. The framework for the subrogation rights of the Employer/Insurer in ...
    Continue Reading
  • What are Structured Settlements?

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 22-Aug-2013

    Some Employer/Insurers in Workers' Compensation claims will wish to reach a structured settlement, with payments made to the Employee/Claimant over time. This can be common in larger claims, but it is also sometimes seen in smaller claims. The considerations in such situations in Workers' Compensation practice are largely the same as they are in Personal Injury practice, and will not be ...
    Continue Reading
  • Medicare Set-Aside Allocations

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 7-Aug-2013

    A topic related to catastrophic injury claims, but not limited to them, is the topic of Medicare Set-Aside Allocations or trusts ("MSA's"). This is a complicated area, and has been an important issue in Workers' Compensation for some years. An MSA may be necessary anytime a settlement is reached in a Workers' Compensation claim where the Employee/Claimant is currently a ...
    Continue Reading
  • Workers' Compensation Catastrophic Injury Claims

    Posted By Douglas F. Kaleita, P.C. || 19-Jul-2013

    When handling and working towards settlement of a Workers' Compensation claim, there are various particular situations that may arise and specific issues that may come up that may require some type of special handling by the Atlanta workers' compensation lawyer that represents you. Cases involving catastrophic injuries are generally not subject to the ceiling of 350 or 400 weeks on TTD and ...
    Continue Reading
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Benefits

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 8-Jul-2013

    Another potential category of exposure for the Employer/Insurer in the Workers' Compensation case is benefits for vocational rehabilitation. While many attorneys practicing in this area may assert that this category can be as much of a nuisance to the injured worker and his attorney as it can be a benefit, it should still be addressed in the attempt to maximize settlement value. Unless the ...
    Continue Reading
  • Medical Benefits And Workers' Compensation

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 8-Jul-2013

    Exposure for future medical care for the Employee/Claimant is a very important category of exposure for the Employer/Insurer in most Workers' Compensation cases. In many cases, future medical care presents the highest dollar exposure in the case; in other cases, it will rank second or third, after exposure for future TTD benefits and perhaps PPD benefits. In all cases, it is essential for the ...
    Continue Reading
  • Am I Eligible for Permanent Partial Disability Benefits?

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 20-Jun-2013

    Another important category of benefits available to the injured worker in the Workers' Compensation case is Permanent Partial Disability benefits (frequently abbreviated as "PPD benefits.") Unlike TTD and TPD benefits, which are intended to indemnify the Employee/Claimant for income loss due to the injury, PPD benefits have a different intent. Essentially, PPD benefits compensate the ...
    Continue Reading
  • Info on Temporary Partial Disability Benefits

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 20-Jun-2013

    The second category of indemnity benefits is Temporary Partial Disability benefits (frequently abbreviated as "TPD benefits"). TPD benefits are created by O.C.G.A. Sec. 34-9-262, and calculated in accord with the provisions of Board Rule 262. That statute provides as follows: Except as otherwise provided in Code Section 34-9-263, where the disability to work resulting from the injury is ...
    Continue Reading
  • Temporary Total Disability Benefits - Part 2

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 17-Jun-2013

    This is a continuation of the previous blog: With Temporary Total Disability Benefits, there is a ceiling of $500.00 per week that is payable as of 2007 for TTD benefits, such that injured workers who were making more than $750/week prior to being injured will receive less than two-thirds of their income loss while receiving TTD. This ceiling on the amount of TTD benefits payable to the ...
    Continue Reading
  • What are Temporary Total Disability Benefits? Part 1

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 17-Jun-2013

    The first and often the most important category of benefits available in Workers' Compensation claims - especially when evaluating exposures for settlement - is the category of Temporary Total Disability benefits (frequently abbreviated as "TTD benefits.") This is the weekly check for indemnity benefits that the Employee/Claimant receives as long as she remains disabled from work due ...
    Continue Reading
  • What Is Covered by Workers' Compensation and What Is Not?

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 12-Jun-2013

    The Workers' Compensation Act essentially provides for five different categories of benefits. In summary, these categories consist of two categories of income or indemnity benefits payable for income loss due to injury-related disability; one category of disability benefits payable for a partial or complete loss of the use of a body part or of the body as a whole as a result of the injury; ...
    Continue Reading
  • How Much is My Workers' Comp Case Worth?

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 12-Jun-2013

    As with any injury claim, valuation of a Workers' Compensation case involves looking at the elements of the claim for which compensation is payable under Georgia law, in the light of the subjective considerations of the particular client's case. In Workers' Compensation, instead of categories of damages, like special and general damages, the specific elements of the claim are instead ...
    Continue Reading
  • Attorney Fees in Workers' Compensation Cases

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 8-May-2013

    According to the statutory framework of the Workers' Compensation Act, attorney's fees are regulated by statute. Pursuant to O.C.G.A. Sec. 34-9-108, attorney's fees are limited to no more than 25% in a Workers' Compensation case. The subject of attorney's fees is a detailed one under the Workers' Compensation Act, in terms of when and for what attorney fees can be awarded, ...
    Continue Reading
  • Workers' Compensation vs. Personal Injury Series (Part 2)

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 1-May-2013

    The main focus of this blog post will be regarding the State Board of Workers' Compensation. The Workers' Compensation Act creates and governs the State Board of Workers' Compensation ("State Board"). The State Board is the government agency that administers and adjudicates all Workers' Compensation claims. Absent a potential appeal of a litigated matter, a Workers' ...
    Continue Reading
  • Workers' Compensation vs. Personal Injury Series (Part 1)

    Posted By Atlanta Workers' Compensation Attorney || 30-Apr-2013

    You may be wondering what the differences are when handling a workers' compensation case in comparison with a personal injury case. In the grand view, these two practice areas are very similar. In both situations, the focus of the practitioner is on the same goals and phases, ergo, getting the client appropriate and necessary medical care; determining the appropriate time to attempt to resolve ...
    Continue Reading