What Happens At Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Hearings?

Sounds like a typical lawyer answer, but it’s true- the answer is that it depends.

Some hearings are for a brief discussion between the attorneys and the Work Comp Judge, called a “Pre -Trial” where no testimony is taken. Other hearings involve presenting evidence such as deposition transcripts and updating the Work Comp Judge as to the status of litigation. Sometimes a hearing is specifically slated for testimony of the injured worker or perhaps an employer witness, or the adjustor. Some hearings are specifically for a “Compromise and Release” which is a Pennsylvania Work Comp Settlement. In this type of hearing, the injured worker testifies briefly so that the Work Comp Judge can determine if they understand the full legal significance of the Agreement. In other instances, a hearing is held to submit a Brief, which is a written legal argument on an issue.

The duration of a hearing depends on what is happening of course. Some hearings can take one minute or less. Other hearings can take  hours.

The best way to determine what will happen at a given hearing is to speak to your PA Work Comp Attorney. Each Work Comp Judge handles their cases differently so it’s a case by case basis.

For more information about how Pennsylvania Work Comp Hearings work, call or email Attorney Michael W. Cardamone 7 days a week at (215) 206-9068 or Michael@CardamoneLaw.com

PA Workers’ Compensation Info- Cardamone Named Top 10 Attorney in Pennsylvania

Attorney Cardamone, Founder and Managing Partner of Cardamone Law, a Pennsylvania Work Comp boutique firm for injured workers, has been named a Top 10 Personal Injury Attorney in the State of Pennsylvania by the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys.

According to the website for the National Academy of Personal Injury Attorneys, the selection process is as below:

  • The attorneys who make the NAOPIA list must first be nominated by a licensed practicing attorney or one of our in-house research staff members.
  • Second, the NAOPIA research staff verifies the nominated individuals meet the minimum requirements of membership in the NAOPIA.
  • Then the  NAOPIA processing committee selects a portion of the nominated attorneys to advance to the final selection stage.
  • Then our Board of Governors officially selects the Top 10 in each state.

Cardamone has handled workers’ compensation cases since 1999 and was also named to the Best Attorneys of America List by Rue Ratings and the Top Attorneys of North America by Who’s Who. Cardamone has been named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer in Workers’ Compensation since 2008.

Cardamone Law has 5 offices in Eastern and Central Pennsylvania and is one of the very few firms in Pennsylvania that dedicates 100% of its practice to helping injured workers with Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation cases.

naopiabadgeTop10

Biz Carda Mike

PA Work Comp Lawyer Michael Cardamone of Cardamone Law Named Top 100 Litigation Lawyer

Attorney Michael Cardamone, President of Cardamone Law, a boutique firm that represents injured workers in Pennsylvania, has been named a Top 100 Litigation Lawyer in the State of Pennsylvania for 2016 due to his dedication and results for injured workers. Cardamone Law is a well known work comp firm for injured workers in Eastern and Central Pennsylvania. Cardamone was also recently named to the Best Attorneys of American List by Rue Ratings.

Below is a picture of the Top 100 Award.

Thank you for supporting Cardamone Law

Top 100 PA

Brain Injury Lawyer Philadelphia, PA

Brain Injuries are serious injuries that can have lifelong consequences and crippling symptoms. Given the recent studies, especially as it relates to the National Football League, the general public is becoming increasingly aware of the dangers of concussions. Anything that “shakes the brain” can have devastating consequences- even if the head doesn’t strike anything. (ie, whiplash motion).

Brain Injury cases can be complex medically. Having an experienced brain injury lawyer is critical in maximizing your recovery. Has the victim seen a neurologist? What about a neuropsychologist? Many neurologists will fail to recognize the severity of a brain injury- as the patient may “appear” coherent and normal upon examination with a negative diagnostic study. However, a neuropsychologist can be pivotal in lending objectivity to an otherwise “subjective” case- by doing extensive testing and juxtaposing data from pre injury to post injury. Many attorneys miss this very important dynamic.

Here is a link to a great resource- the National Institute of Neurological Disorders & Strokes.

Cardamone Law helps brain injury victims. We will make sure you are getting the proper treatment and that you have a good advocate for litigation. We know how to maximize a case so that you get compensated properly.

For more information, call Cardamone Law 7 days a week at (215) 206-9068 or email Michael@CardamoneLaw.com

 

Best Attorneys

Biz Carda Mike

 

PA Workers’ Compensation- Top 5 Myths

There are many myths about Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation issues. I hear them every day. I wanted to share my thoughts about these to help set the record straight from my 16 years of experience.

1.   Myth:  My Neighbor Got $100,000 for His Settlement, So I Should Too

Fact:  No two cases are identical. There are so many factors that distinguish cases. For example, what’s the average weekly wage and comp rate, the age of the claimant, the diagnoses, the accepted injuries in the controlling document, is there is an IME report challenging the treating doctor’s findings, if there is litigation, who is the Judge, has an earning power been established, etc etc etc.  It is a waste of time to consider what another person received for their settlement. Talk to your attorney about the value of your case, given the facts of your case.

2.   Myth:  The IME Doctor Will Side Against Me

Fact: Not always. While they tend to be quite biased in many cases, I’ve seen plenty of fair and balanced IME reports which acknowledge a work-related injury and disability. Don’t jump to conclusions.

3.   Myth: Most People On Work Comp Don’t Want to Work

Fact:  I’ve seen, interviewed, and fought for hundreds of injured workers for many years. I am able to line up their sentiments with their medical records and see them testify under oath- I get a very good sense of people and pretty quickly. Very few have indicated or shown a propensity to simply want to coast on work comp- most injured workers don’t enjoy being at home, out of work, and in pain. You lose money while on work comp- you don’t make it.

4.   Myth: If I Get Fired, I Cannot Get Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Fact: Not true. If the firing was for willful misconduct, then the insurer/employer will likely argue that any wage loss benefits payable should cease. However, that’s not easy to prove. If an injured worker is laid off and has work-related restrictions, a reinstatement of benefits is due. A termination of employment does NOT end a workers’ compensation case.

5.   Myth: Since I Am on Workers Comp, My Health Insurance Cannot Be Terminated

Fact:  Unfortunately, this is not true. The fact that a claim has been accepted or is being paid, does not mean that an Employer has to keep health insurance going. In many cases, it stops soon after the employee stops working, with a COBRA notice going out where applicable. The work comp insurance for the accepted work-related injuries continues until a full recovery is found by a Judge or until a case is settled, but the regular health insurance is not something the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act covers.

Biz Carda Mike

PA Workers Comp- The IME Doctor Claims I Am Recovered But I Am Not- What Should I Do?

This scenario happens frequently in Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation cases. Why? Well, the insurer/employer is permitted an “Independent Medical Exam” every 6 months and they often send you to doctors who will have a propensity to opine that you’re recovered from the work-related injury and/or that any ongoing disability may be real but related to non- work related problems such as degenerative arthritis. A full recovery opinion will generate a Petition to Terminate your benefits and you’ll be in Court quickly.

First, make sure you retain an experienced, Certified PA Work Comp Lawyer. The Judges will tell you at the first hearing, if you’re not represented, that it’s HIGHLY recommended. It’s nearly impossible to litigate a case properly unless you’re an attorney. PA Workers’ Compensation has become quite complicated and technical. Moreover, it’s costly to obtain a doctor’s deposition which is necessary in most cases- let alone knowing how to take a deposition, knowing the rules of evidence, etc.

Another good idea to is schedule an appointment with your treating doctor. Take the IME report with you so your physician can review it and perhaps comment on it in their treatment notes. In this regard, your doctor make have different findings upon examination and we can utilize this to cross examine their expert when it comes time for a deposition.

You may receive a “Job Offer” letter from the employer if you’re still employed there. This can cause great anxiety as to whether to attempt the job or not. Speak to your attorney about this situation immediately upon receipt of any such letter.

A hearing will be scheduled after the Petition to Terminate is filed by the insurer/employer. The first stage of the case is called “Supersedeas” and you’ll need to speak to your PA Work Comp Attorney to determine what evidence you will submit at the first proceeding. This stage of the case is critical because if you lose then your checks stop or get reduced as the litigation unfolds over the next months thereafter.

Most importantly, do NOT panic. Remember, a doctor’s opinion is just that- an Opinion. It’s not a fact. Only you know how you feel. But hopefully your treating doctor will be on your side. If he or she isn’t, then speak to your attorney about seeing a new physician immediately.

Call Cardamone Law 7 days a week at (215) 206-9068 or email Michael@CardamoneLaw.com

All We Do Is Workers Comp- and Only for Injured Workers. There are virtually no other firms with 100% dedication to PA Workers Compensation.

cropped-cardamone-law-logo-jpegfacebook3.jpg

National Advocates

ASLA Top 100

Best Attorneys