Attorney Eric Christiansen has recently received significant, favorable decision on behalf of his client in a Workers’ Compensation Case.
In A.H. v. Beall’s Distribution Center/Sedgwick, the employer and its workers' compensation administrator refused to pay lost wage benefits due to an injured worker who was often unable to complete her normal work hours because of medical appointments occurring during the work week, as well as chronic pain resulting from significant injuries that required four separate shoulder surgeries. The employer and its workers' compensation administrator also refused to increase the injured workers’ average weekly wage (used for lost wage benefit calculations) to include discontinued employer contributions toward health insurance, even though the Florida Workers’ Compensation Law requires such an increase to be made when employer contributions for health insurance stop post-accident.
After months of litigation, including several depositions, Attorney Christiansen represented the injured worker in a Final Hearing held before the Judge of Compensation Claims. The Judge of Compensation Claims entered an order fully favorable to the injured worker, awarding lost wage benefits, penalties and interest, and an increase in average weekly wage. Employers and their workers' compensation administrators often refuse to pay benefits that are due under the Florida Workers' Compensation Law.
This is what the Attorneys at Lancaster & Eure do for our clients, and this is what we can do for you. Know your rights! If your workers' compensation benefits have been denied in part or in full, call Lancaster & Eure to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced, professional attorneys. Contact us today at (941) 365 7575.
Attorney David Wieland recently received another fully favorable decision in favor of his client in a Social Security Disability Case. The decision awarded Supplemental Security Income benefits to our client who previously worked as a screen writer and video camera operator in California.
Our client filed for Supplemental Security Income benefits, in April of 2013, due to his inability to continue working based on his disabling conditions of lumbago, embolism, thrombosis, gout, and degenerative changes of his foot. The Administrative Law Judge agreed with our allegations and found those conditions to be severe impairments.
The Judge found our client was able to work the full range of sedentary work. However, our client was found to be of advanced age (55 years or older) and as such the Judge had to find if a successful adjustment to other work could be made. Of significance, the Judge stated in the hearing the only year our client earned what Social Security considers Substantial Gainful Activity (over $1,000 a month take home pay) was the year in which he successfully sold a screen play. The Judge asked for a memorandum to be filed, following the hearing, explaining which position was to be considered his past relevant work, either his occupation as a cameraman or a screen writer.
This distinction, while seeming minute, was extremely significant as the Judge had to look to the client's past relevant work to determine if he would be able to make a successful adjustment to other work. If the Judge found the past relevant work was his occupation as a screen writer then our client would have been found NOT disabled as he would be able to successfully adjust from one sedentary position (screen writer) to other sedentary positions found in the national economy.
However, Mr. Wieland was able to avoid this unfavorable decision for our client by successfully arguing the client's past relevant work should not be determined based the amount of his earnings. Attorney Wieland argued past relevant work should be determined based on the value of his work had he been an employee rather than self-employed and based on the hours/skills/energy output expended in his position as a cameraman.
Based on this successful argument our client was awarded Supplemental Security Income benefits. Most importantly, this award also entitles the client to Medicaid benefits, allowing him to receive continued medical treatment to help alleviate his symptoms of his disabling conditions.