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Workers' Compensation LawThe newsletter of the ISBA’s Section on Workers’ Compensation Law

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Newsletter articles from 2011

Appellate court cites WC settlement contract as basis for PSEBA & PEDA benefits; Collateral estoppel uses WC findings to establish other causes of action By John P. O’Grady November 2011 A summary of the recent decision of Frank H. Richter v. Village of Oak Brook and its ramifications.
Attorney fees on MSA funds confirmed in N.J. By Brad E. Bleakney November 2011 The New Jersey Superior Court recently considered whether Medicare regulations and CMS allowed an attorney to recover attorney fees for creating a settlement obtained on behalf of a client in a civil suit from the Medicare set aside funds itself.
Chairman Mitch Weisz interview By Richard D. Hannigan November 2011 Learn more about the various procedural and substantive changes that have come about as a result of the workers’ compensation reform signed by Governor Quinn on June 28, 2011.
The clock stops here: Defining Section 12’s 48-hour disclosure requirement: Mulligan v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission By Miranda L. Soucie August 2011 Section 12 of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act requires that the proponent of medical testimony furnish a report of the medical expert to the other party at least “48-hours before the time the case is set for hearing.”
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan November 2011 An introduction and news updates from Editor Rich Hannigan.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan August 2011 News updates of interest to workers' compensation lawyers, from editor Rich Hannigan.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan June 2011 An introduction to the issue from Editor Richard D. Hannigan.
Editor’s notes By Richard D. Hannigan February 2011 An introduction to the issue from Editor Richard D. Hannigan.
How to avoid the “penalty box” By Christine M. Ory June 2011 Respondents can be tagged for penalties under Sections 19k, 19l and attorneys’ fees under 16 if they do not have justification for delaying or denying benefits. To defeat penalties, respondents must put forth a legitimate dispute.
If you call it a bonus, is it necessarily excluded from the calculation of average weekly wage? And when do you include overtime in the calculation of average weekly wage? By Richard D. Hannigan November 2011 The court stated that there is a distinction between incentive-based pay, which an employee receives in consideration for specific work performed as a matter of contractual right and a bonus which an employee receives for no consideration or in consideration for overall performance a,t the sole discretion of the employer.
Interview with Arbitrator Peter O’Malley June 2011 An interview between attorney Catherine Mafee Levine and Arbitrator Peter O’Malley.
Involuntary merger of 8(e) specific loss into 8(d)1 wage differential award By Brad E. Bleakney November 2011 Even where there is competent medical evidence presented of a full duty return to work accompanied by a medical opinion stating that the condition of ill being was in fact permanent and causally related to the first date of accident, it may not be enough to sustain a separate award for specific loss under 8(e) where there is a finding of subsequent, intervening accidents to the same part of the body that subsequently resulted in a wage a reduction.
Jeffrey Cox v. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission By Rita E. Mulcahy February 2011 The First District Appellate Court ruled that an injury that occurs while a traveling employee, driving a company vehicle, is in the process of returning to his route home arises out of and in the course of employment.
New limitation applied to recovery of medical payments under Section 8(a) By Arnold G. Rubin and Catherine Krenz Doan June 2011 Tower Automotive v. Illinois Workers Compensation Commission is an extremely significant case, and will have a significant impact on those claims for medical benefits prior to February 1, 2006, the effective date of the amendment to Section 8(a) in 2005. 820 ILCS 305/8(a).
Returning to the course of employment By Noah A. Frank November 2011 Employers who have policies regarding personal deviations should enforce those policies. A pattern and practice of discipline demonstrates that policy violation is not tolerated, and that the employee has removed himself from the sphere of employment.
The two doctor rule—The genesis of the referral has no bearing on the issue so long as the treating doctor makes the referral By John W. Powers August 2011 A look at the recent case of Absolute Cleaning v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Comm’n.
Wage differentials: Is it all just speculation? By Carol A. Hartline June 2011 A look at the recent case of United Airlines v. Workers' Compensation Comm'n, which addressed what could be allowed in as evidence to determine an 8(d)(1) award.
Warning! Section 12 may be hazardous to your health and not compensable under the Act By William R. Gallagher June 2011 The recent case of Menard v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission appears to determine that an injury in connection with a Section 12 examination is not compensable. However, a careful reading of that case indicates that it may not be the final adjudication of this issue.
Who has jurisdiction over workers’ compensation fraud? By Richard D. Hannigan August 2011 Because the petitioner’s case involved questions of fact and not law, the circuit court lacked jurisdiction to hear the fraud complaint and found that the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is the proper jurisdiction.
Why don’t we simply abolish the Workers’ Compensation Act? By Richard D. Hannigan February 2011 The author would rather abolish the Workers' Compensation Act and let a jury consider cases under tort law.
Workers’ Compensation Reform in the December 2010 veto session By Richard D. Hannigan February 2011 A summary of the recent discussions within the Illinois House and Senate Committee meetings on Workers' Compensation Reform.