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Injured Georgia Workers: Weekly Monetary Benefits in Workers’ Compensation Claims

Injured Georgia workers are not always able to return back to work due to their work injury. In these cases, the hurt employee may be deemed “totally disabled.”  Should this occur, the employee hurt at work may be entitled to money benefits under
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Applying for Social Security – Another Resource for Those Injured at Work

Workers’ Compensation benefits are a way that bridges the gap between disability and returning to work. However, in some instances these payments may not be enough to care for the needs of someone who has a long term injury. In these cases, Social Security benefits may provide an injured person with an alternative source of…
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Handling Your Workers’ Compensation Doctors Appointments

In our firm, we believe our health is the most important thing in your case. When you are hurt on the job, the employer is required to furnish remedial medical treatment to you. Oftentimes, the employer may have a say in which doctor you get to treat to see. Before you step into the doctor’s…
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Is COVID-19 Covered by Workers’ Comp?

Unfortunately, it is very difficult for Georgia’s working class to obtain workers’ compensation benefits if employees contract the COVID-19 virus. While the Act includes statutory coverage for “occupational diseases,” employees bear the burden of satisfying a five-prong test where they are required to explicitly show causation. Under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-280(2), employees must prove: (A) A…
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4 tips on Avoiding Occupational Injuries in the Hospital

In our firm, we believe that prevention is crucial in preventing workplace injuries and accidents. Over the years, our practice has seen a rise in workplace injuries among nurses and nursing assistants. Studies have shown that high demands, physical stress, non-standard work schedules, and chronic workforce shortages have contributed to a workplace setting that generates…
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What does it mean to cross-examine as an attorney?

The adverse attorney may “cross-examine” a witness by interrogating him or her in open court. The adverse attorney aims to highlight the deficiencies in the witness’ testimony, expose inconsistencies, or elicit facts that are favorable to the other party. Commonly in a Georgia workers’ compensation case, the cross-examination occurs after the witness has offered its…
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What is a Bench Trial?

The judiciary is often referred to as the “bench.” A bench trial is a trial where there is no jury and the judge serves two roles: (1) the person vested with the power to protect the procedural safeguards of the trial as to the rules of evidence and conduct of the parties and (2) the…
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Will my Workers’ Compensation Benefits Cease if I have a Subsequent Injury?

A subsequent injury may sever an Employer/Insurer’s liability for medical care and indemnity benefits. Please see Board Rule 204.  To determine whether the chain of causation is broken, it is necessary to examine the circumstances surrounding the subsequent injury, and answer questions such as: Did the subsequent injury occur at work? Did the subsequent injury…
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5 Tips to Stay Safe in the Workplace [infographic]

5 Tips to Stay Safe in the Workplace

In spite of training about safety, some workplace injuries are inevitable due to the nature of the work itself. However, as you can see in this infographic, you can minimize the casualty or the inflicted injury if you know the risks and hazards around your workplace. If you are working with machinery, in a confined…
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Does Workers’ Comp Cover Employees and Contractors? [infographic]

Does Workers’ Comp Cover Employees and Contractors?

Will you be covered by worker’s compensation law? This is the first thing that must be established to ensure that the tragedy you have been into can be compensated and you won’t be spending more for a no hope case. This infographic will reveal some methods and strategies that will help you get the compensation.
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Cash Benefits for On-the-Job Injuries in Georgia

Cash Benefits for On-the-Job Injuries in Georgia

If you have sustained an occupational injury, you may be wondering if you are eligible for benefits and, if so, which ones.  Here are some frequently asked questions about cash awards for workers’ compensation cases. Q: If I am out of work for an injury that occurred in the State of Georgia, what percentage of…
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Common Issues About the Workers’ Compensation Process

Common Issues About the Workers’ Compensation Process

If you are injured on the job, you must report your injury to your employer. This should be reported immediately when possible, but certainly within thirty (30) days. You then will also need to file your workers’ compensation claim with the Board within the statutory time frame set forth by Georgia law. Once you have…
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The Benefits of Hiring an Atlanta Workers’ Compensation Attorney

The Benefits of Hiring an Atlanta Workers’ Compensation Attorney

If you’ve been injured on the job, you can attempt to get the benefits that you are entitled to on your own, but there are risks in filing workers’ compensation claims alone. Here are some of the challenges that an injured employee could run into (based on actual cases): Your employer may miscategorize you as…
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How to File for Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Georgia

How to File for Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Georgia

You go to work so that you can pay your bills, but occasionally, things happen in the workplace that limit your ability to make a living. If you have been injured on the job in the State of Georgia, you may be wondering what to do next.  Fortunately, workers’ compensation protects not just employers but employees,…
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How to Choose a Personal Injury Attorney When There are so Many? [infographic]

How to Choose a Personal Injury Attorney When There are so Many?

Wondering how to choose a personal injury or workers’ compensation attorney? Accidents can happen anytime, even in your workplace. You don’t want that to happen. Neither does your boss. However, because it happens, you have to deal with what else can you do to claim your claims. Ask help from an injury attorney. There could…
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How do I Pick the Right Workers' Compensation Attorney?

How do I Pick the Right Workers’ Compensation Attorney?

The workers’ compensation system can be a messy labyrinth of ever-changing regulations and policies.  Without the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney, it can be easy to get lost in the maze and fail to recover timely and adequate compensation for your losses. If you should decide to hire an attorney, it can be…
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Is Workers’ Compensation Taxable?

Is Workers’ Compensation Taxable?

They say the only two sure things in life are death and taxes, and the latter are coming due on April 17 of this year.  Tax day normally falls on April 15-unless the date happens to coincide with a weekend or holiday.  This year, April 15 is a Sunday and April 16 marks Emancipation Day,…
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Injured on the Job? Follow These Steps for a Positive Outcome

Injured on the Job? Follow These Steps for a Positive Outcome

If you are injured on the job, you may be tempted to keep working because you don’t want to rock the boat.  This could jeopardize your workers’ compensation claim down the line, however.  Workers’ compensation regulations can be very tricky to navigate, and the wrong move can have significant repercussions. If you are hurt in…
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When to Hire a Workers’ Comp Attorney

Accidents could happen anywhere even in the safest place you can think of. Much more in a workplace that has many uncontrollable factors that can cause the accident. Such unfortunate event can lead to other sufferings especially in the physical and emotional aspect of living. The law provides rights and privileges for victims. Know yours…
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Going Back to Work After an Occupational Injury

Going Back to Work After an Occupational Injury

Being injured on the job can be a jarring experience.  Your health can take a beating and so can your career.  Your life may now involve a litany of doctor’s appointments, and you may find yourself trying to navigate the often-perplexing workers’ compensation system to get the benefits that you deserve. At some point, your…
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Work Injury Benefits and Payments in the state of Georgia

Work Injury Benefits, Compensation, and Payments in Georgia

  If you have been injured on the job in Georgia and you are unable to return to work because of your work injury, you may be entitled to receive weekly income benefits as long as you are disabled from working.  However, you likely have many other questions about the process, the amount of the…
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The Importance of a Balanced Life

The Importance of a Balanced Life

Life is the pursuit of happiness, but it’s a constant balancing act to achieve fulfillment in multiple aspects of our lives.  We may be happy in the workplace, but if our personal relationships are suffering, it will be hard to find lasting joy.  The same is true of the reverse.  Even if we’re very happy…
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International Women’s Day & Women in Law

International Women’s Day & Women in Law

International Women’s Day is approaching on March 8.  Unlike some other observances, this one is not sponsored by any single organization.  Rather, a variety of charities, academic institutions, government entities, and other groups choose to honor the day in different ways. International Women’s Day is observed globally.  It took root in the 1900s and continues…
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How Slowing Down can Speed Up Recovery

How Slowing Down can Speed Up Recovery

At Ramos & Law, we know the importance of reading.  It’s an integral part of our profession that helps us serve our clients and uphold the justice system.  Although there are many crime shows on television that glorify the legal profession, the bottom line is that most of what we do involves reading and writing…
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Reasonable Accommodation for Injured Workers

Reasonable Accommodation for Injured Workers

If you have been injured on the job, you should take the necessary steps to receive adequate workers’ compensation benefits.  These include informing your employer immediately and seeing a physician who is sanctioned by your company.  Many people can resume their old job without a hitch, but others may need to return in a different…
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Employers: Don’t Cut Corners on Workers’ Compensation

Employers: Don’t Cut Corners on Workers’ Compensation

If you are an employer, you are undoubtedly familiar with high workers’ compensation rates.  As you strive to keep your overhead low and eke out a profit, it can feel like a burden to pay these rates.  It may be tempting to take creative steps to avoid paying for this coverage.  In fact, a small…
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Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Atlanta, Georgia

All of us at the Ramos Law Firm are pleased to serve the great city of Atlanta. Atlanta, Georgia is a sprawling metropolis famous for many things, including hosting the 1996 Olympics. The history of Atlanta is the story of the evolving South. The city played a pivotal role during the Civil Rights Movement of…
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Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Buford, Georgia

Ramos Law Firm is happy to serve the people of Buford. With a population between 12,000 and 13,000, Buford, Georgia can easily be mistaken as a small town in the South. It lies on 17 square miles of land located largely in Gwinnett County, with a small parcel in Hall County. It was originally a…
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Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Decatur, Georgia

Ramos & Law is proud to service Decatur residents and their workers’ compensation needs. Decatur, Georgia is so close to Atlanta that the city borders blur. However, the Atlanta suburb has a history and personality all its own. Decatur was founded in 1823, much earlier than Atlanta. Decatur was destined to host a railroad hub,…
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Workers’ Compensation Lawyer for Smyrna, Georgia

Ramos & Law has offices close to Smyrna, and our staff is proud to serve the city’s residents. Smyrna, Georgia is a city located northwest of Atlanta. It is part of the Atlanta Metropolitan Area and has a population of 51,271 as of the 2010 census. With a total area of 15.4 square miles, it…
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Worried About Your Job After Taking Time off for an Injury?

Worried About Your Job After Taking Time off for an Injury?

If you have been injured on the job, you may be facing a number of quandaries.  First, you may be trying to navigate the workers’ compensation process. This can entail getting adequate medical treatment as well as paid time off of work for injuries.  You may also be concerned about your job—especially if your recovery…
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What Should I Do if I Get Hurt on the Job?

The workplace is full of hazards and meeting an accident there is not impossible despite constant care. If it does happen, you have compensation rights that you can take with the help of a job injury attorney. However, it also requires some action on your part. This infographic will provide details on the next steps…
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Abraham Lincoln’s Lawyer Days

Abraham Lincoln’s Lawyer Days

At Ramos & Law, we respect the efforts of skilled and honorable attorneys who have gone before us.  In the lead-up to President’s Day on February 19, we tip our hats to great presidents like Abraham Lincoln who were also great lawyers.  Back in Lincoln’s day, attorney fees usually ranged from $5 to $20 per…
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Freedom to Hire an Attorney

Freedom to Hire an Attorney

February 1st marks National Freedom Day, a celebration that has its roots in President Lincoln’s presidency.  On this day in 1865, President Lincoln signed a resolution that outlawed slavery.  This resolution would later become the 13th Amendment to the Constitution. Today, people honor the day with festivals and ceremonies celebrating the freedoms that all Americans…
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Injured on the Job? Follow These Tips

Injured on the Job? Follow These Tips

If you have been hurt on the job, you may have a lot of questions about what to do next.  Should you tell your employer? Or just lay low?  Should you seek help from a physician immediately?  Or see if your injury can heal on its own?    If you are weighing these concerns—or…
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The Benefits of Hiring a Workers’ Compensation Attorney

The Benefits of Hiring a Workers’ Compensation Attorney

So you’ve been injured on the job. In a perfect world, you would be able to get adequate compensation and first-rate medical care.  Unfortunately, this is not a perfect world. As you begin to deal with your employer’s insurance company, you may quickly start to feel like you are in over your head. If you…
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Don’t Forget to Say Thank You

Don’t Forget to Say Thank You

January is National Thank You Month—a great way to start out the year. As we move into 2018, it’s worthwhile to reflect on the blessings of the past year.  Being grateful isn’t just the right thing to do—it’s also good for us.   Science has shown that people who express gratitude regularly enjoy better mental and…
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Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: Advocates and Mentors

Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: Advocates and Mentors

This January marks the 16th anniversary of National Mentoring Month.  The purpose of the observance is to connect more of the nation’s youth with exemplary adult mentors.  Few people achieve success on their own. Most of us have been affected by someone who set a good example, mentored, taught, and advocated for us. Many career…
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Catastrophic Workers’ Compensation

Some accidents in the workplace are simply unbearable because aside from the physical injuries that are sustained by the victim, this will create a big impact on the life of the employee and his or her family. When the accident is considered catastrophic, there are benefits and entitlements that are given to the employee. This…
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New Year’s Resolution: Resolve Your Workers’ Compensation Case

New Year’s Resolution: Resolve Your Workers’ Compensation Case

New Year’s resolutions can propel us to greater heights in the coming year.  The New Year presents a special opportunity to consider the blessings and challenges of the past year and move forward with resolve to be a little bit better in the coming year. The process of setting New Year’s resolutions dates back many…
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Types of Workers’ Compensation Benefits

Workplace accidents have been common nowadays given the many hazards that are present in the work location, may it be in an office or production area. However, as an employee, you must know your rights and get the claim you are ought to have legally. What are these compensation benefits? Learn the basic ones listed…
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Workplace Injuries Mistakes

Workplace Injuries? Avoid These Mistakes

A workplace injury can throw you for a loop. You may feel the financial burdens of your medical bills and time off of work. At the same time, you may fear reporting the injury because you want to continue to be a hardworking and resilient employee. If you have been injured on the job, don’t…
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Workers Compensation System Freefall or not

Is the Workers’ Compensation System in Freefall?

The aim of workers’ compensation is to ensure that companies do not become negligent in taking care of their employees. At the same time, it is used as a safeguard against workers unfairly or gratuitously suing their employers for workplace injuries. As an employee benefit, workers’ compensation is managed and regulated by the state. Although…
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Human Rights in the Workplace

Human Rights in the Workplace

Human rights are considered the basis of civilized life. This concept has not always been fully appreciated, but it has grown in importance through the years. Human rights ensure that people are free and valued as an equal to their fellow human beings. Human Rights Day was introduced and sponsored by the United Nations. In…
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Settling a Workers Compensation Case Tips

Tips for Settling a Workers’ Compensation Case

Navigating workers’ compensation settlements can be thorny. If you are involved in a workers’ compensation case, here are some key things to consider before settling. This is compensation for work, not for pain and suffering. If you do not receive the promotion you were aiming for or if your significant other leaves you due to…
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Improve the Outcome of a Workers Comp Hearing

Improving the Outcome of a Workers’ Compensation Hearing

One of the most common frustrations in filing a workers’ compensation claim is that the process—including the employer’s and insurance company’s review of your claim—can take a long time. Another challenge is workers’ compensation claim denial. In the case of a delay or denial, an employee may seek legal action and court intervention. This process…
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Benefits of Settling a Workers Compensation Claim

Benefits of Settling a Workers’ Compensation Claim

A worker injured on the job may file a compensation claim. If approved, the employer’s insurance company awards a benefit to the injured worker. The amount and payment basis depends on what is agreed upon by both parties. In the course of paying, the employer or the insurance companies may try to cut the amount…
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Workers Comp Claim Filing Tips

Tips for Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

The Occupational Safety and Health Office defines workplace injury and illness as injuries acquired while a worker is performing his or her task in the workplace or illnesses acquired through prolonged exposure to substances on the job. Yet, even in the safest workplaces, workplace injuries can occur. In the event of an injury, the employee…
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PTSD and Workers Compensation

Is PTSD Covered by Workers’ Compensation?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that may be triggered by terrifying or stressful events. Employees who have gone through a distressing or disturbing situation can suffer from lasting effects of the trauma. This emotional shock can be transient in some cases. In other situations, however, it may endure for years and…
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What Should I do if I get hurt on the Job?

Have you been injured at work? Your employer understands the risk of the job and accidents may happen. However, there are things that you need to ensure that you did when you got the injury. Doing the steps given in this infographic will give you high chance for compensation. Just, don’t forget to get the…
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Changing Demographics Affect Workers’ Compensation

How Changing Demographics Affect Workers’ Compensation

Workers’ compensation was created to help financially support employees in a time of need after injury. However, new trends in worker demographics may signal changes in the cost burden for employers. People are working beyond the retirement age. Some employees may enjoy working and may not yet find retirement appealing. Others may need to work…
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Timelines When Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Timelines When Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Accidents in the workplace may happen no matter how safe an employee acts or how much effort a company exerts to avoid them. Should an on-the-job accident occur, the affected worker may suffer financially by having to take days off of work or from out-of-pocket costs from medical bills. To prevent these losses, states offer…
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Workplace Knee and Shoulder Injuries

Workplace Knee and Shoulder Injuries

Knee and shoulder injuries are some of the most common types of work-related injuries. Should injuries include fractures or damage to muscles or the rotator cuff joint. These injuries are usually the result of lifting heavy weights, falling into objects with outstretched arms or hands, or sustaining blows or blunt trauma to the shoulder joint…
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National Disability Employment Awareness

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Observed in October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month brings awareness to the plight of those with disabilities and urges employers to help ensure equality in the workplace. For those with disabilities, access ramps and other aids to mobility are a great help in the workplace. However, these are just the basic amenities which modern buildings…
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Tips for Successful Workers’ Compensation Claims

Is your workplace barrier free? Or is it prone to workplace accidents? When the management of facility may not be efficient enough causing some workers to get injuries, employees have the right for a compensation claim. A job injury attorney would require the plaintiff several things do. If you have been injured at the site,…
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Ins and Outs of PPD Law

The Ins and Outs of PPD Law

When you get injured on the job and return to work with a permanent disability that keeps you from performing in the same capacity as before, you are eligible for “permanent partial disability,” also called PPD benefits. PPD benefits have different computations based on a state’s rules and regulations. There are also other variables in…
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Workers Comp Claim Denied

Workers’ Compensation Claim Denied?

There are several reasons why a workers’ compensation claim may be turned down. However, if the claim appears to be compelling and complete, there are several ways to address a questionable denial. When a workers’ compensation claim is declined for potentially erroneous reasons, an employee can request assistance from an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer. The…
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Technology Changes Workers Comp Processes

Technology is Changing Workers’ Compensation Processes

Workers’ compensation is often a loaded issue. It is politically-charged and can cause rifts between labor and management. Studies have shown that employees who are compensated well and enjoy good medical coverage are happy and productive employees. European countries have taken great strides to embrace this concept, but it remains a hard sell within some…
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Make The Most of Self-Improvement Month

Make the Most of Self-Improvement Month

Competition is always in rich supply. Whether you own your own business or you work for a big company, you need to stay ahead of the curve. Although some organizations make it a point to have regular training for their employees, it is still up to the individual to take charge of their own advancement.…
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Labor Day and The Evolution of Job Market

Labor Day and the Evolution of the Job Market

Labor Day is not just celebrated in the U.S. but has become a movement in many parts of the world. In addition to recognizing workers themselves, Labor Day tips its hat to all that the labor movement has achieved. These accomplishments include the five-day work week, eight-hour days, paid leave, workers’ compensation and more. In…
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get most of workers compensation case

Getting the Most from Your Workers’ Compensation Case

In workers’ compensation cases, the interest of the injured worker is pitted against those of the employer or insurance company. It is in the injured worker’s interest to get proper medical treatment and workers’ compensation benefits. On the other hand, it is in the employer’s and insurance company’s interest to avoid paying benefits or have…
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Gainful employment with Employer

Returning to Gainful Employment With the Employer

A Georgia employer should support an injured worker’s safe and speedy return to work. A company’s support for its injured employees shows that it values its workforce. Additionally, it benefits a business to accommodate an injured employee’s physical restrictions rather than hiring and training a new replacement. As an employer, companies shouldn’t rush an employee…
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Permanent Disability workers

Permanent Disability for Workers

Georgia workers may be injured in the workplace or while performing job-related duties outside of the workplace. While some fortunate workers will recover from their injuries, many do not. Some workers never fully heal and may be eligible for Georgia’s permanent disability benefits. Such benefits may be paid in one lump sum or over several…
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Healthcare for Injured Workers

The Importance of Healthcare for Injured Workers

A Georgia worker who gets injured on the job must take the proper steps when seeking medical treatment. Appropriate medical care is necessary for the worker’s recovery and health. It is also important in maximizing workers’ compensation benefits. If you get injured in the workplace or when performing official work-related duties, you must seek treatment…
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Settling Your Workers’ Comp

How to Settle a Workers’ Comp Case in Georgia?

  Settling Comp Claims for Injured Workers The workers’ compensation law in Georgia encourages settlement whenever possible. Cases can even be settled before workers physically recover from their injuries. But in most cases, injured workers settle only after their medical conditions have stabilized. This is a practical move considering that workers may not know whether…
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Mistakes When Filing Workers Comp Claim

Avoid These Mistakes When Filing a Workers’ Compensation Claim

A Georgia worker who gets injured on the job can file a workers’ compensation claim in order to get benefits. Some injured workers, because of their unfamiliarity with the system, make errors which slow down or minimize their benefits, or even lead to the claim’s denial. Here are typical mistakes that could jeopardize workers’ compensation…
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What to Know When Working in Georgia

What You Need to Know When Working in Georgia

Georgia’s lifestyle and standard of living attract Fortune 500 companies and an educated, skilled workforce that fuel the state’s success. The state has a unique lifestyle, which blends both a city and country atmosphere, as well as a varied topography that provides a broad range of activities. Georgia has a high-quality standard of living made…
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Preventing Workplace Injuries

Preventing Common Workplace Injuries

Workplace injuries are often caused by random accidents. Some are due to neglect. While the employer has a weighty responsibility to ensure workplace safety, each worker also has the job of protecting themselves and their fellow employees. Here are some of the most common workers’ compensation injuries. Motorized equipment accidents – Workers who drive company…
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Mental & Emotional Workplace Stress

Help for Victims of Mental and Emotional Workplace Stress

July 5th is Workaholics Day. A light-hearted observance encouraging people to evaluate their workload and take a breather. Workaholics are a breed of workers who just don’t know what to do when they aren’t facing an avalanche of work. They may work long hours simply because they are happiest when they are productive. They may…
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Complying with Medical Treatment advantages

Advantages of Complying with Medical Treatment

An injured worker in the state of Georgia is entitled to medical care for work injuries at the expense of the employer and the insurance company that handles the company’s workers’ compensation. In accordance with state laws, Georgia employers and their companies’ insurance carriers are granted the right to direct the medical treatment of injured…
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Reasons for Workers Compensation Denial

Common Reasons for Workers’ Compensation Denial

Even if a workers’ compensation claim seems like a guarantee, there are seemingly endless reasons that a claim could be denied. Pre-existing injury – An employee who has been previously hurt may aggravate his injuries while performing his job. Employers typically use the pre-existing injury defense to deny a worker’s claim. Offsite injuries – A…
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Keep Young Workers Safe

Tips to Keep Young Workers Safe

With school out, it’s a great time for older students to join the workforce. They can fatten up their wallets, gain work experience, make connections that will help them in future job searches, and build their character in the process. Students who work summer jobs often return to school more mature and disciplined. Employers should…
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Workers Compensation FAQ

Workers’ Compensation FAQ

Workers’ compensation provides benefits to those who are injured on the job. It can be difficult to navigate the steps for filing workers’ compensation claims. Here are some basic Q&As to help injured workers understand the process better.  What is workers’ compensation? Workers’ compensation is comparable to most insurance policies. It’s goal is to…
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Keep the Workplace Safe

Keeping the Workplace Safe

National Safety Month, observed every June, aims to raise awareness about essential safety issues in day-to-day life. The council is dedicated to reducing the leading causes of injuries and death in the workplace, home, and on the road. Workers and employers alike must be concerned about safety in the workplace. They should work together to…
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Suffered a Second Accident While on Workers’ Compensation

Suffered a Second Accident While on Workers’ Compensation?

Subsequent Unrelated Injury under Georgia Work Comp Law Unfortunately, some workers’ compensation recipients suffer a second and unrelated accident while under care for their work injury.  Georgia workers’ compensation law allows the insurance companies to suspend or “cut off” benefits when an injured worker suffers a significant “subsequent non-work related injury” severe enough to relieve…
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Should I Hire An Attorney For My Work Injury Claim? If So, How Do I Choose One When There Are So Many Attorneys In Atlanta, Georgia

An often asked question is “Should I hire an attorney for my work injury claim?”. That question requires a look at the Georgia workers’ compensation process and it also may depend on what is happening in your specific work comp claim. Like other accidents, no one plans to be hurt on the job. It just…
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Georgia's workforce

Workers’ Compensation Benefits in Georgia are Due to Injured Workers, Even Those Who Are Undocumented or Considered an Illegal Alien

In order to receive workers’ compensation benefits in Georgia, the employee must demonstrate that he or she is an “employee” of the employer. The State Board will evaluate whether there is a valid employment relationship for the purposes of work comp benefits.  The State Board is directed to construe this relationship liberally. According to the…
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What If The Work Comp Authorized Treating Physician, or ATP, Says Negative Things About Me In The Medical Records?

The Georgia Workers’ Compensation system relies on a duly licensed physician to serve as the work comp “authorized treating physician”.  This physician is often referred to as the ATP and his or her opinion and language in the medical narratives carries a lot of influence with the direction of a workers’ compensation or occupational injury…
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Trial Preparation From Start To Finish For Paralegals

Thanks for attending the November 10, 2016 seminar Trial Preparation From Start to Finish For Paralegals and the session Succeeding at Trial. Attached you will find the information we discussed including the reference lists and the PowerPoint. It was a pleasure to be at the seminar. If Ramos & Law can assist in any way,…
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Hurt at Work and Now My Phone Won’t Stop Ringing: Who are these people calling after my work accident?

Once you get hurt on the job, a host of people may be calling you trying to get information from you regarding your work injury. It is important to distinguish what their motives are for calling. First, if a lawyer is calling you before you are soliciting a call from them, this is improper.  Be…
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Are You an Injured Coke Worker That Has Been Terminated or Worried About Termination?

As we mentioned in our Beverage and Food Industry page, workers employed at these manufacturing facilities in Atlanta such as Coke and Coca Cola Enterprises are particularly vulnerable to sustain occupational injuries. These may include back injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome, shoulder injuries, and many more.  We have found that Coke and its partners often hire…
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Catastrophic Workers Compensation Claim Definition – What Are My Rehab Benefits and Entitlements?

Rehabilitation benefits are services that the State Board determines are “reasonably required and appear likely to restore an injured employee to (a) maximum physical condition and (b) suitable employment. These goals may be attained through medical care, treatment, counseling, vocational assistance, job planning, or additional training. See, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-200.1; Pringle v. Mayor of Savannah,…
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Is Avvo a Credible Legal Resource?

If you watch much TV, you may have seen the commercials for Avvo, the online legal directory service. They’re clever TV spots for certain. But is Avvo a credible legal resource? Avvo was founded in 2006 out of Seattle by a lawyer who was then Expedia’s general counsel. Seeing the need for a credible resource…
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Will Georgia Employers Opt-Out of Workers’ Compensation responsibility?

A well-funded special interest lobbying coalition is pushing to eliminate the Georgia Workers’ Compensation System. As I wrote about a couple of months ago, the “Association of Responsible Alternatives to Workers’ Compensation” (ARAWC), funded by approximately two dozen national corporations is at the helm of this effort. In its drive to squash workers’ comp, the…
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Repetitive Motion Injury in Meat-Packing

Workers in the meatpacking industry have long complained of high risk of injury on-the-job. From lacerations to toxic substance exposure, bacterial infections and falls, workplace injuries in meat-packing are abundant. Perhaps the most commonly-reported injury among meat-packers is repetitive motion strain. In fact, repetitive motion injury in meat-packing is has grabbed national attention. Since the…
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Protecting Braves Stadium Construction Workers

Construction workers erecting the massive SunTrust Park in Marietta, Georgia are the focus of a partnership–in hopes of protecting Braves stadium construction workers from injury on the construction site. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Georgia Tech Research Institute, the Associated General Contractors of Georgia and American Builders 2017 are working together to increase safety, reduce illness…
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Heat-Related Illness On-the-Job

With temperatures soaring well into the 90’s in Georgia this week, it’s a good time to become aware of precautions to prevent heat-related illness on-the-job. Workers in construction, roofing, landscaping, surveying, roadside work or any other line of work that involves physical exertion in the outdoors, need to be keenly aware of the dangers of…
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Teens injured in Fast Food Restaurants

As we head into the dog-days of summer in Georgia, many of our young people are forfeiting the pool for long days at work, attempting to save money before starting back to school. And with the uptick in seasonal employment, we see a rise in injuries, especially among teens. Teens injured in fast-food restaurants is a…
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Workers’ Rights in Intoxication defense

Much attention has been brought to the dangers of drinking and driving. Less is talked about regarding drinking on-the-job, which can be equally dangerous. Not only is an intoxicated worker putting himself and others at-risk, but there is also a good chance a workers’ compensation claim will be denied to that worker should he be…
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Carpet Industry Workplace Injuries

Shaw industries was named by Forbes Magazine the best employer in Georgia and one of the best in a nation for 2014. Shaw was one of 14 Georgia companies on Forbes’ Best Employers list. The Dalton, Georgia company has recently added new jobs in Georgia, employing 22,500 people. But even this carpet giant is not…
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Beware the Slow Erosion of Workers’ Comp

Remember the old frog in boiling water analogy? It’s meant to underline the danger of slow erosion. If a frog jumps in a pot of boiling water, it notices the heat immediately, and jumps out. However if a frog jumps into a pot of lukewarm water that heats up to boiling, it won’t notice the…
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A Workers’ Comp Success Story

Felicia S. is no stranger to hard work. As a retail manager working with high-end customers, she has learned to transition from up-selling at the make-up counter to packing piles of fragrance boxes at the blink of an eyelash. But after Felicia took a bad fall at work while taking down a visual display, her…
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Happy Memorial Day from Ramos & Law

Georgia’s hard-working citizens deserve a day off in honor of our veterans. Rest, recreation and family time are critical to balance and even safety in the workplace.  Here are some ideas for enjoyable things to do today and tomorrow. Happy Memorial Day from Ramos & Law!     Stone Mountain: Salute the Troops. Through Monday, 5/25…
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Workers’ Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a time to pay homage to the sacrifice of our nation’s veterans. And believe it or not, in the world of workers’ compensation, we have our own version of Memorial Day. Workers’ Memorial Day, actually celebrated last month, is a day to acknowledge the toll that work-related fatal and life-altering accidents have…
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Preventing Lifeguard Injuries

It’s that time of the year when pools are opening and teens are out looking for work: many as lifeguards. We hear a lot about water safety this time of year. But who is looking out for the young people who risk their lives- often with little-to-no experience?  Preventing lifeguard injuries is imperative for the…
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Ramos & Law Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Everyday Heroes

Ramos & Law has had the privilege of serving Georgia’s injured workers for ten years! It’s been a fulfilling decade for all of us at the firm. We’ve had the opportunity to learn from hard-working, resilient people who have persevered through hardship and have come out ahead. We have chosen to celebrate our anniversary by honoring…
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Police Officers and Firefighters Denied Benefits

Atlanta police and firefighters appear to have been kept in-the-dark on disability payments that may have been owed to them, according to WSB-TV. The retired and disabled men and women claim they’re owed more than $30,000, according to the news station. Some of the police officers and firefighters denied benefits say they had been misled…
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Poultry Workers in Georgia and Job Outlook

It seems we win some and lose some in the Peach State job market these days. According to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, Tyson Foods appears to making changes that could affect poultry workers in Georgia. Tyson will reportedly close its operation near Columbus and reduce a shift at the Dawson plant. The poultry giant will,…
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Judge Vicki Lynn Snow retires from SBWC

Ramos & Law congratulates Administrative Law Judge, Vicki Lynn Snow, on her retirement from the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation. Prior to her tenure on the State Board’s Trial Division, Judge Snow served for many years on the Appellate Division. While Judge Snow’s last day was April 29, 2015, she plans to continue her…
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Risks of Being Injured on a Summer Job

The month of May is here. For many, it’s one of the busiest months of the year, especially for families. High School and college graduations, proms, summer vacation planning and summer job-hunting may keep families and teens in constant motion. And while our young people are looking for seasonal work, it is important for parents…
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Are Subcontractors Eligible for Workers’ Compensation

Are Subcontractors Eligible for Workers’ Compensation?

Subcontracting is a common business practice that can help general contractors and businesses get jobs done more efficiently. But what happens when a subcontracted worker is injured on the job? Are subcontractors eligible for workers’ compensation benefits? The facts about subcontractors and workers’ comp Georgia is one of 44 states that statutorily regulates workers’ compensation within…
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Injury from Hydrogen Sulfide Gas

A tragic series of mishaps at an asphalt refining company in Douglas County, Georgia this week is a reminder of how quickly injuries can happen when workers are taken off-guard. It also prompts us to re-visit safety protocol and prevention of injury from hydrogen sulfide gas. The incident at the Asphalt Refining and Technology Company…
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Job Postings in Georgia

We all like to see job growth in our state. Several job postings in Georgia and recent announcements are worth sharing- and good news for Georgia workers looking for jobs. First, we’re fortunate to have a thriving healthcare industry here in Georgia. The promise of 900 new jobs at Kaiser Permanente just made the jobs…
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Nurses Injured On-the-Job

Healthcare workers have one of the highest rates of injury than those in any other profession. One of the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy, the healthcare industry employs over 18 million workers. Tens of thousands of nursing employees suffer back and neck injury and other musculoskeletal injuries each year. Additional injury risks include needle-sticks,…
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Ramos & Law Supports Filipino-Americans

In support of the Filipino-American community, Ramos & Law is assisting with a small business boot camp as part of the White House Initiative on Asian American and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI). The conference takes place tomorrow in Philadelphia, PA, hosted by The Philippine American Chamber of Commerce of Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey. The event…
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When an Injured Worker’s Condition Changes for the Worse

It’s important for an injured worker to take an appropriate amount of time off work after being injured on-the-job. After enough time on temporary total disability, most workers are ready to get back to work. But what happens if that person’s condition changes for the worse after he goes back to work? By that time,…
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Georgia Workers Injured In the Warehouse

Metropolitan Atlanta is the fifth-largest market in the U.S. for warehouse space. With about 800 million square feet of space, Georgia is a go-to state for corporations looking for affordable warehousing, and also one that logs thousands of workplace accidents. Nearly 250,000 Georgia workers are employed in warehouses in Warner-Robbins, Gainesville, Macon, August, Atlanta, Columbus…
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What Does a PPD Rating Mean To My Case?

What Does PPD Rating Mean to an Injured Workers’ Case?

Permanent Partial Disability or PPD Definition Injured workers may question what a permanent partial disability rating (PPD) means to their workers’ compensation case. Essentially, the PPD rating is a final medical assessment of a worker’s injury as it relates to his ability to function. At some point during the recovery process after an injury, the…
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Is it OK to Attend a Court Hearing Without a Lawyer?

Since workers’ compensation cases do not go to a jury trial, some people may have the false impression that workers’ comp court hearings are simple matters to navigate without legal representation. However, we do not advise you to attend a court hearing without a lawyer.  There is an old adage in criminal trials that describes…
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Safety for an Aging Workforce

Most of us hope for a relaxing retirement after decades of hard work. But the reality is, more people are working longer to make up for failed investments or simply to provide extra time to plan for their next phase in life. So what does an aging workforce mean to businesses trying to keep workers…
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Supporting Youth in Foster Care

Youth are the future of our workplaces and our communities. Whether we are a parent or concerned citizen, we should all recognize the importance fostering leadership qualities in our young people.  This in part is why Ramos & Law is a proud sponsor of Camp Horizon, a charity organization offering year-round programs to Metro Atlanta’s youth…
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Dollar General Safety Violations

In the same week Dollar General announced record sales in 2014, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited a Georgia store for safety violations discovered during a December audit, proposing $83,000 in fines. Dollar General has been cited for similar violations in 2010 and 2014. A local news station talked to an OSHA…
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Forsyth County Career Fair

Georgia laborers on the look-out for job openings may be interested in the career fair tomorrow in Forsyth County. Sixty employers will be looking to fill about 1,000 jobs according to news reports. The Georgia Department of Labor is sponsoring the fair along with Lanier Technical College and the Cumming- Forsyth Chamber of Commerce.  This…
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Jury Trials in Workers’ Compensation?

The short answer to this question is, no. There are no jury trials in  workers’ compensation. That does not, however mean that you may not be in court at some point.  When an injured worker goes to workers’ compensation “court,” this is generally referred to as an “evidentiary hearing,” where the claim is heard by…
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Are Workers’ Comp Benefits Taxable in Georgia?

Are Workers’ Compensation Benefits Taxable in Atlanta, Georgia?

Many injured workers in Georgia ask us if their workers’ compensation benefits are taxable.  Fortunately, they are not normally considered taxable income at the state or federal level.    Workers’ Compensation and Taxes IRS Code 26 U.S. Code § 104 states that amounts received under workers’ compensation acts in recompense for injuries or sickness are…
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Pain and Suffering Compensable in Workers’ Comp?

Getting injured on the job has long-term ramifications for many workers. In addition to loss of income, workers feel entitled to compensation for “pain and suffering” to make up for the emotional and physical toll and injury can take on them. So- is pain and suffering compensable in workers’ comp?  The truth is, the Georgia Workers’…
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Best Jobs for Skilled Workers in Georgia

The Georgia Department of Labor has identified “Hot Careers to 2022,” forecasting job opportunities in a wide-range of fields, including some of the best jobs for skilled workers in Georgia.  The list categorizes jobs that are expected to grow rapidly throughout the next decade, with above average wages and at least 100 expected job openings in…
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Workers’ Comp for Independent Contractors

An independent contractor is not considered to be an employee; and as a rule, is not eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. However, there are factors to be considered in assessing workers’ comp for independent contractors. The definition of employee versus independent contractor has been the focus of a significant amount of litigation. The Court will…
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Preventing Injuries Caused by Spills

Spills of liquid and granular material appear to be a major contributing factor to injuries in the workplace. And while mopping up after a spill is something we should have learned from our mothers, it warrants regular reminders for workers on-the-job. To play it safe, be sure to thoroughly clean-up to avoid injuries caused by spills.…
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Ramos & Law Supports Ghana Medical Clinic

An effort to construct a medical clinic in a remote village in Ghana, West Africa is close to completion. Ramos & Law has supported this medical clinic project since the effort began in 2011. What we hope to be the last shipment of supplies has reached port in Ghana; providing necessities such as toilets, fixtures…
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NPR: Reforms Hurting Injured Workers

A ProPublica and National Public Radio Report issued yesterday painted a distressing but realistic picture of the uphill battle facing many injured workers. In short, the report points to a trend which threatens to slowly erode compensation even for severely injured workers. While statistics show that employers are now paying the lowest rates for workers’…
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Rushing and Injuries On-the-Job

Rushing and Injuries On-the-Job

 The Hazards of Hurrying  Let’s face it: we live in a world in which faster is better. Instant information and multi-tasking rule the roost. We often measure our sense of worth by how much we get done in a day. And while productivity is essential in the workplace, there is a balance we need to…
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Super Lawyers 2015

We’re proud to announce that attorney Bryan Ramos has been selected to Super Lawyers 2015 by the prestigious Thomson Reuters organization. Attorney Ramos has been recognized by Super Lawyers since 2010, with the highest level of recognition in 2014 and 2015. But what does the Super Lawyers designation really mean? We’re actually quite impressed with the Super Lawyers…
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Falls in Icy Parking Lots

We’re gearing up for icy weather again here in the metropolitan Atlanta area. And while school systems may close when the weather gets dicey, most of us have to brave the road conditions to get into work.  But the roads are not the only hazards of winter weather. The company parking lot can also pose…
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Automotive Plants and Repetitive Motion Injuries

Workers in automotive plants such as the Kia plant in West Point, Georgia, and its suppliers are typically susceptible to blunt trauma injury due to moving parts.  But many people don’t think of the less obvious injuries that occur in automotive plants on a regular basis. Repetitive motion injuries are also common among workers in…
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Can My Employer Put Me Under Surveillance?

It is not uncommon for an employer or agency to use surveillance to determine the "true" extent and nature of a claimant's personal activity as it relates to an alleged work injury.
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The Georgia Workers’ Advocate

Exciting things are happening at Ramos & Law. This spring marks our 10th anniversary of helping Georgia’s injured workers. We have been practicing exclusively workers’ compensation since the start of the firm in 2005.  This year we have stepped up plans to be even more involved in our community and more supportive of Georgia’s workforce. We…
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Company’s Suit on Behalf of an Injured Worker Clarified for Statute of Limitation Purposes

On September 22, 2009, the Georgia Court of Appeals delivered the opinion in the case of Butts v. Thomas (A09A1046).  In this case, granting of summary judgment was affirmed in the plaintiff’s suit to recover workers’ compensation benefits paid under the Tennessee workers’ compensation scheme to its employee.  The injuries arose out of a car…
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The Injured Worker’s Saga: Back Injury

An injured worker who has suffered a back injury often undergoes a series of frustrating events before receiving the help they need.  After experiencing pain, workers may be directed to a Concentra, Urgent Care, or Choice Care in Atlanta or DeKalb County, and the practitioner may dismiss the worker with a “back strain or sprain.”  Hopefully, an…
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Atlanta Braves stadium: effect on the construction industry in Georgia

Residents of Cobb County Georgia are bracing themselves for months of navigating construction sites in the area of the new Atlanta Braves stadium and proposed mixed-use project. What’s called a “live-play-work” district will incorporate office space, retail and restaurant establishments, and residential housing. Mixed-use developments are becoming increasingly popular in Georgia as is evidenced by…
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Are Seasonal Employees Eligible for Workers’ Compensation?

Ramos & Law wishes everyone a Happy 2015! We know that the holidays are a busy time for Georgia’s workforce- especially retail workers. The uptick in sales during the Christmas season prompted many Atlanta employers to plan ahead and hire seasonal employees to help with retail sales, temporary merchandise set-up, inventory stocking and other jobs. Heavy…
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I Was injured at the Company Christmas Party. Am I Eligible For Benefits?

Under the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act, accidental injuries occurring while the employee is participating in a company sponsored event, such as the company Christmas party, is compensable under one of the following conditions: (1) The injury occurred on the premises as a regular incident of employment; (2) The event is required by the employer: either expressly or implicitly; or…
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Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Holidays

Ramos & Law wishes all of our clients, friends and families, a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and the best wishes and wellness for the new year.
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What Is the Job Outlook for Skilled Workers in Georgia?

A recent job outlook report is good news for skilled workers looking for jobs in the state of Georgia: the growing demand for workers is apparently out-pacing the number of skilled laborers looking for work. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Georgia High Demand Career Initiative Report released recently, there’s plenty of room in…
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Delayed Workers Compensation Hearing

It is not uncommon for a hearing to be reset three or even four times depending on the complexity of the case.  However, the injured workers’ attorney will likely contest any continuances or resets if he or she believes the Employer or Insurance company is attempting to take advantage of the Claimant’s condition or is…
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The Settlement They Offered Me Was Too Low

We often get calls from potential clients stating that they have been offered a settlement and they feel it was too low. There are a number of reasons the caller may feel this way. The most obvious reason is that it is too low. The insurance company wants to settle the claim and move on.…
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2014 Revised Board Rules and Forms

On July 1, 2014, the State Board of Workers’ Compensation provided a modification of its Board Rules and Forms. The following is a summary of the changes: Rule 40 was amended to add the address of the new Gainesville office. Changes to Rule 61—Descriptions of Forms Form WC-20(a). This amendment provides that the new 1500…
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Do Jury Trials or Pain and Suffering Exist in Workers’ Compensation?

An injured worker is not entitled to a jury trial in a workers’ compensation case.  The Georgia law creates “trial” and “appellate” divisions within the jurisdiction of the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.  O.C.G.A. § 34-9-47.  The trial division is apprised of administrative law judges (ALJ) appointed by the Chairperson and the Board.  Some of…
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What Now? Injured Employees Being Laid Off

Injured employees being laid off from Briggs & Stratton in McDonough, Georgia, may be entitled to workers’ compensation income benefits.  These workers will be classified in certain categories.  First, if injured Briggs & Stratton workers are “out of work” on “total disability” from a work-related accident or injury and they are receiving income benefits at…
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Selecting the Best Attorney For Your Workers’ Compensation Case

Selecting the best attorney for your workers’ compensation case will depend on number of things.  Not unlike doctors, there are many attorneys in the greater-Atlanta area.  However, not every attorney is equipped to handle workers’ compensation claims.  Similar to selecting the best or “right” doctor for your needs, you must consider whether the prospective attorney’s…
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Changing Physicians While on Workers’ Compensation

Changing physicians while you are “under workers’ compensation” can be tricky.  O.C.G.A § 34-9-200(a) requires an employer to furnish the injured employee with medical treatment which “shall be reasonably required and appear likely to effect a cure, give relief, or restore the employee to suitable employment.” O.C.G.A. § 34-9-201(b)(1) allows the employer to satisfy that…
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Living on Workers’ Compensation Benefits?

Insurance companies and its advocates like to believe that people live well while on workers’ compensation benefits.  This is generally not true. Workers’ Compensation Benefits are Capped These workers’ compensation benefits are capped by law as to how much
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Have You Been Fired Because of Your Work Injury?

In many instances, the Employer will literally add insult to your work injury by firing you because of your work injury.  Unfortunately, the workers’ compensation law does not address the topics of “wrongful termination” or unjust firings.  The primary analysis the State Board considers is whether
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Can I Be Terminated While on Workers’ Compensation?

Sadly, some employees are terminated while on workers’ compensation.  Businesses are created to make money.  Sometimes, businesses treat employees like a piece of equipment.  If the piece of equipment is broken or not functioning, some businesses will simply replace the piece of equipment and move on.  Similarly, some workers who get injured on the job…
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A Moment of Silence

We want to take this day to say thank you to all the families who have lost a loved one who was a member of our country’s armed forces.  We thank them for their service and you for your sacrifice and we’d like to take a moment of silence in their honor.
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Were You Injured On The Job, Terminated, and Now Need Work in GA?

Have you been “let go”, “terminated” or “laid off” from your job after you were injured on the job?  Are you still on medical restrictions but need to look for work? At Ramos & Law, we understand how hard this situation can be for you.  To help, we have assembled a few pointers for you,…
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Referrals and “Pre-Certification” in Georgia Workers’ Comp

Can I get a referral in a workers’ compensation claim? In many cases the “company doctor” may not have the expertise to adequately treat the injured worker.  Therefore, a “referral” may be made to another physician or specialist.  For example, an injured employee may treat initially at the Spring Street Concentra Medical Center.  These doctors…
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Weekly Income Benefits: Average Weekly Wage, Similar Employees, and Hourly Wages

When a Georgia employee is missing time from work because of his or her work injury, the injured Georgia employee may be entitled to weekly income benefits.  The Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation  law provides that these weekly income benefits be paid at a certain rate. (O.C.G.A. 34-9-260 and 261.)  Essentially, the amount of…
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How Much Per Week Will I Get On Workers’ Compensation?

How much you will receive per week on workers’ compensation is based on several factors. In the event an injured worker is unable to return to work because of her occupational accident, the law allows the injured employee to receive “indemnity benefits.” These benefits are tax free and are received on a weekly basis. The…
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Can I Fight a Denied Workers Compensation Claim?

Clients often come to us after their claim has been “controverted” or denied asking how that can be changed or “Can I fight a denied workers’ compensation claim?” The good news is, this can be fought. On the downside, it may take a little bit before it’s reversed. Injured workers who find themselves being denied…
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Changing Doctors in the Workers’ Compensation Claim

If the injured worker desires to change doctors within the posted panel of physicians, he or she may do so without approval from the Board or the insurance company.  This change is only allowed one time, however. If the injured employee wants to change physicians to someone not listed on the panel of physicians, he…
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Settlement in Workers’ Compensation Claims

The term “settlement” can be very confusing in a Georgia workers’ compensation claim.  Essentially, a “settlement” is an agreement between the parties where one party receives financial compensation in exchange for releasing the other party from any further obligations or threat of prosecution.  Additionally, a settlement
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Physical Therapy in Workers’ Compensation Claims

After a physical injury at work, the employer is required to furnish the injured employee medical benefits which include medical, surgical, psychological, and other related or derivative treatment at hospitals and physical therapy facilities.  See, O.C.G.A. §34-9-200(a).  The employer/insurer will be entitled to
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Guidelines for following up with the authorized treating doctor

Generally, the goal of the injured worker and the authorized treating physician should be the same:  to heal the patient.  Given the number of patients that “company doctors” see, it is important that the injured worker serve as his or her best advocate during the medical appointments.  At Ramos & Law, we recommend that the…
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Preparing for Medical Appointments

Getting healthy again from a work related accident should always be the top priority.  Therefore, it is crucial that the injured worker makes the most of his or her time with the physician.  If the injured employee has the panel of physicians, thoughtful consideration must be exercised upon selecting the authorized treating physician.  This doctor…
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Employer and Employee IME basics in Georgia Workers’ Comp Claims

Employer and Employee IME Basics for Georgia Workers’ Comp Claims

What is an IME or Independent Medical Examination?  In many workers’ compensation cases, the injured worker, the employer, or insurance carrier may desire an “independent medical examination” (IME) or “second opinion.” This generally occurs when one of the parties is dissatisfied with the current physician’s diagnosis, prognosis, or care plan.     IME Under Georgia Workers’…
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Georgia Snow Storm 2014 Brings City to a Halt

If you were one of the unlucky many that sat on the interstate for hours on end last Tuesday trying to get home, we feel for you and hope that you have now recovered and, if necessary, retrieved your car (hopefully without a fine).  Some workers may have been stuck even longer and some may…
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Mileage reimbursement, parking, and transportation / meals – housing under GA Work Comp

The price of gasoline and the stress of battling the Atlanta traffic to get your workers’ compensation medical appointment can add “insult to injury” in some cases.  In many cases, injured workers
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Medical treatment and panel choices

When an employee is injured on the job, the Employer is required to furnish them with medical benefits including surgical, hospital, and related care or items prescribed by a licensed physician.  These items may include
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Martin Luther King day

On this day, Ramos & Law takes a few moments to remember the legacy and lasting contribution of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.   As Dr. King stated, “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”, we pledge to continue to achieve the promises of equality and freedom.  We wish you a peaceful and meaningful holiday.
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The Applicability Of Statutory Employment On Owner-Operator’s Employees

A threshold question in workers’ compensation is whether an “employment relationship” existed between the injured person and the employer. The burden is on the claimant to prove he or she was an employee at the time of the injury. Cash v. American Sur. Co., 101 Ga.App. 379 (1960). It is clear that the law favors…
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Return To Work Issues

Accommodating an injured employee who has been released to return to work with restrictions from the authorized treating physician has been the source of many pitfalls for employers. Some employers have given “light duty” employees full immunity from following the standard company policies enforced against other employees for fear of violating the law. While the…
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The Good, The Bad, The Controvert

The Good, The Bad, The Controverting: Definition and Claims

What does controverted mean? Generally, the workers’ compensation defenses boil down to a few things:  The work accident did not happen or there is no insurance coverage; If the accident did happen, the injury was not severe; or the injured worker’s misconduct caused the injury; If the injured worker is disabled, the disability is not…
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Nursing and Healthcare Employees Injured At Work

What happens when nurses and physicians suffer work-related injuries while caring for their patients? According to the CDC, healthcare is the second fastest growing sector of the U.S. economy. It is projected that there are over 12 million healthcare workers in America. Of these employees, nearly 80% are women. Did you know that healthcare workers…
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Construction Sites

Many workplace accidents occur at the construction sites in Atlanta as well as any other Georgia city or town.  It is important to understand that these injuries are not “just part of the job”.   These injuries must be reported appropriately and these workers should receive quality medical treatment.  Many construction employees feel irritated, frustrated, or overwhelmed…
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Beverage Industry Workers

Workers employed at Pepsi, Coca-Cola, or Kraft Foods know that they are working in a “factory”. It is a commercial  factory where they make, manufacture, package, bottle, and process food for millions of people. This assembly line process is physically demanding. Just like in the automobile, plastics, or steel factories, workers are often hurt on…
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Airserv, Airline and Airport Employees

Airline workers such as Delta employees, Airtran workers, and baggage handlers for both airlines are generally covered under workers’ compensation. If you have been injured on the job, you are entitled to immediate medical treatment. It is important to report the injury to your supervisor and accurately explain how the injury happened as a part of…
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Reporting a Work Accident and Injury

When an accident happens at work and an injury occurs, the first thing an injured worker should do is seek medical attention by reporting the event to the immediate supervisor or manager.  The injured employee should report the details of the accident but focus on securing medical attention.  At our firm, we encourage
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Tax reporting for Workers’ Compensation income benefits and settlements

As 2013 ended, the issue of whether workers’ compensation benefits and settlement proceeds should be reported as “income” on your taxes has once again arisen.  Generally, IRS Code 104 provides
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Important Deadlines in Workers’ Compensation

If you are injured on the job, there are several steps you need to take immediately in order to meet important deadlines and ensure the best outcome after your injury: First, report the incident to your supervisor. Failure to report the accident within 30 days can jeopardize your benefits. (O.C.G.A. § 34-9-80).  Your employer will…
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Tolling the Statute of Limitations by Paying Benefits

Recently, the Ramos Law Firm was asked whether the payment of salary paid due to an occupational injury qualified as income benefits for the purposes of tolling the statute of limitations.  Particularly, an Atlanta employer paid
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The State Board of Workers’ Compensation requires notice of temporary partial disability conversion

Effective January 1, 2014, Board Rule 104 requires that Form WC-104 be filed with the Board at the same time
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Seasonal employees have workers’ compensation rights too

During this time, many Atlanta employers hire seasonal employees to help out during the holidays.  They are hired to help with retail sales, temporary set-up, or inventory among other items.  Unfortunately, these Atlanta employees are rushed, and sometimes they get injured on the job.  However, the employers claim, or the injured workers themselves, are unsure…
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Medical Second Opinion. Can I get one?

In many instances, an injured employee receiving workers’ compensation medical benefits may desire a second opinion or an independent medical evaluation.  Also, the Employer/Insurer may also want to send you to another physician for a “second opinion.”  If you have been injured on the job and you are receiving weekly income benefits, you are entitled
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My employer denied my claim saying I was on a break

The Ramos Law Firm prosecuted a case where the Employer contested an injury that occurred while the employee was using the bathroom.  The Georgia workers’ compensation law provides that acts performed
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How will I get paid after my work injury while I’m on workers’ compensation leave?

When an injured worker is not able to return back to work because of a work injury, the hurt employee may be deemed “totally disabled.”  Should this occur, the employee hurt at work may be entitled to money benefits under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-261.  The amount of money the employee would be entitled to depends upon
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The company is closing, what happens to my workers’ compensation claim?

The company is closing, what happens to my workers’ compensation claim?

In June 2019, Georgia Pacific announced that it would be closing multiple manufacturing plants in the Southeast.  In August 2019 the Kellogg Corporation announced that it would lay off 108 employees in Atlanta.  Additionally, the Milledgeville Mohawk plant announced the closure of its plant in October 2019. When these corporate factory plants close its doors,…
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Changes to the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Law in 2013

Employees injured on or after July 1, 2013 will be operating under a new set of rules. Georgia House Bill 154 was signed into law by Governor Nathan Deal. The new law limits medical treatment for
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Injured while working at Coca-Cola in Atlanta, Georgia?

The Coca-Cola Company is an American icon in our culture.  However, sometimes its workers are injured while on the job.  Over the past years, the Ramos Law Firm has represented employees working in Atlanta and other cities around the state of Georgia.  In representing these injured workers, we have compiled a short list of things…
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Georgia’s New “Limited Medical” Law Shifts Costs to Medicare

The Georgia Governor and Legislature amended the Workers’ Compensation Act to limit the medical benefits afforded to injured workers.  Currently, if you are injured on the job, you are entitled to
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How Safe is Your Job or Workplace?

In October 2011 the Department of Labor stated that nearly 3.1 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses were reported in the private sector.  This roughly translates to almost 4 injured workers per 100 workers. In these tough economic times, injured workers are fearful of losing their jobs and sometimes they are unaware of their rights under…
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Is there a court system in Georgia workers’ compensation?

In Georgia, if there is a dispute as to medical treatment or entitlement to income benefits or any issue in a workers’ compensation claim, any party can petition for the case to be heard before the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.  At this point, the “law suit” is conducted by a quasi-judicial tribunal.  These workers’…
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What Happens if My Employer Fires Me Because of My Work Injury?

Unfortunately, injured workers are terminated (or fired) because of their work injuries more often than not.  In these situations, the injured employee may have a claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  This blog will address the workers’ rights under the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act.  Presuming the reason why the claimant was injured was
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New Workers’ Compensation Bill before the 2013 Georgia House of Representatives

The 20113 Georgia Legislature is considering amending the Workers’ Compensation Act.  With regards to medical treatment, the proposed bill takes aim at limiting coverage to the injured workers.  Currently, if you are injured on the job, you are entitled to
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Do I have to pay taxes on my workers’ compensation “income” benefits?

Will the insurance company give me a 1099 or W-2?  As we prepare for tax season
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What do I have in common with RG3? The workers’ compensation doctor released me back to work when I was not ready.

Not unlike a lot of injured workers’, Robert Griffin, III (affectionately known as “RG3”) , was released to return back to work injuring his right knee in a December 2012 game.  While the team doctor denied the
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What is my workers’ compensation claim worth?

The answer to this question depends on a number of factors uniquely tied to each case. Generally, the claim’s “value” rests on the injured workers’ average weekly wage, the length of time the claimant has been out of work, and
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Are “Seasonal” Employees Entitled to Workers’ Compensation?

Generally, yes.  First, the injured worker must be an “employee”, not an independent contractor.  Second, the employer must have at least three (3) employees.  The key to whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor depends on how much control the “employer” has over the worker.  The more control, the more likely the…
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What is a “panel of physicians” and what medical treatment am I entitled to?

An employer is required to post a list of physicians showing injured employees physician with whom the Employer or insurance company has pre-approved for treatment. This list of often referred to as the “Panel of Physicians.” The Employer may
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What are interrogatories in a workers’ compensation claim?

Essentially, the interrogatories are a set of written questions issued to a party in a lawsuit by the opposing party. These questions must be answered in
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How do I know if my injury is covered under workers’ compensation?

The first question in a workers’ compensation claim is whether the injured person is in fact an employee and not an independent contractor.  This is generally determined by the level of “control” the Employer has over the injured worker.  The more control, the more
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Are you ready for some Football and Workers’ Comp?

Many folks would not correlate a professional football player with a workers’ compensation claimant, but they certainly can be one in the same.  For example, in the case of Tom Tupa, a veteran NFL punter who suffered a career-ending back injury during a pre-season game in 2005.  Mr. Tupa
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Is libel or slander covered under workers’ comp?

Recently, the firm addressed a question where an Atlanta employer allegedly made libelous or slanderous comments about an employee who was recently hurt on the job.  There was no question that the employee injured his back in a trucking accident in Gwinnett County.  The employee was subsequently terminated because
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Do I have a good workers’ compensation case?

A workers’ compensation accident is simply an accident resulting in a physical injury arising out of and in the course of employment.  Therefore, the first question is whether the injured worker was indeed an employee.  Some workers
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I was injured at Alorica / Ryla in Kennessaw. What Should I do?

Recently, my firm handled a call from an employee who claimed to be hurt at work while working for Ryla or Alorica in Kennessaw, Georgia.  This injured worker alleged that she slipped and fell at work.  She did not have immediate pain, but after her shift
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Serious work injuries resulting in catastrophic designation

Serious work injuries resulting in “catastrophic” designation

The Georgia workers’ compensation system recognizes the unfortunate fact that some work injuries result in employees never returning back to work.  These serious occupational accidents preclude employees from not only working for their previous employer, but for any employer.  These work injuries are designated as “catastrophic”
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Workers’ Compensation Legislative Update

The Georgia legislative session ended last week and Governor Deal has the power to execute the new laws into effect. This year, the legislature drafted and passed some new laws impacting the workers’ compensation landscape.  These new laws go into effect on July 1, 2012.
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If I have a ‘pre-existing’ condition and I reinjure it on the job, can I get workers’ compensation benefits?

Recently, Ramos & Law was successful in winning a case with this same issue. It has been accepted by the State Board that an employee does not need be in “perfect health” but rather the employer “takes the employee as it finds him or her.”  Therefore, an aggravation of a pre-existing condition is
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Does a widow have a loss of consortium claim against the deceased worker’s employer?

An attorney who handles personal injury cases recently asked me whether a widow of a worker who died on the job would be entitled to bring an action for her “loss of consortium” in state or superior court?  Generally, a loss of consortium case arises when a spouse of an injured party is deprived of
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Workers Compensation Benefits for Dependents in Georgia

In the tragic event that an employee dies in the course of his or her job, the State Board Of Workers’ Compensation will ask whether the deceased worker had any dependents who would be eligible to receive workers’ compensation
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How Can I Prepare for My Deposition?

In general, people tend to get nervous when they have to be in a lawyer’s office. When they are in a deposition, it can seem a lot worse as everything you say will be recorded by the court reporter. However, it is a common practice when you file a workers’ compensation claim or law suit.…
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Will I go to court for settlement or is a judge involved in the settlement process?

We’ve all seen the episode of our favorite law show where the parties are sitting in the courtroom and at the last minute, just before the Judge hands down his ruling, they reach an agreement. This makes for good T.V., but in reality that is not how it will play out in a workers’ compensation…
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SuperLaywers 2012- Bryan C. Ramos Georgia Rising Star

Congratulations to Bryan Ramos for being named a 2012 Georgia Rising Star by Super Lawyers.
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Bryan Ramos named one of Georgia’s Top Rated Lawyers

Congratulations to Bryan who was named as a Top Rated Lawyer in Georgia’s Top Rated Lawyers 2012 Edition. The list includes those lawyers who have been rated by their peers to be AV® PreeminentTM—the highest peer review rating available by Martindale-Hubble® Peer Review RatingsTM standards.
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Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Teleconference Initiative

In an effort to “expedite” the resolution of certain issues, the State Board of Workers’ Compensation has recently implemented a “conference call” vehicle to assist injured workers and insurers. Essentially, attorneys may call the Board and request a conference call with the presiding administrative law judge (ALJ) assigned to the claim.  If there is no…
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Workers in the automotive industry at risk for more than just blunt trauma injuries

As of January 3, 2012, Kia Motors Manufacturing in Georgia indicated that it finished its $100 million expansion to boost annual production.  Automotive jobs are labor intensive and often dangerous.  While the obvious, blunt traumatic injury occurring on the job should be covered under workers’ compensation, repetitive motion injuries are also covered under the workers’…
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Sears Closes Stores

Sears announced that it will close six Georgia stores as follows: Sears in Macon; Kmart in Atlanta, Buford, Columbus, Douglasville and Jonesboro. Florida will be hit the hardest by the closing of Sears and Kmart stores, losing 11, according to a preliminary list of 79 planned closures released Thursday
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Happy Holidays

Ramos & Law wishes all our clients, friends and followers a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and a Happy New Year.  We hope you are enjoying the season.
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A typical workers compensation claim when an employee suffers back strain or herniation

A common workers’ compensation scenario involving a back injury goes like this: The injured worker will feel pain in his back or spine, be directed to a Concentra, Urgent Care, or Choice Care in Atlanta or DeKalb County, and the “doctor” may dismiss the worker with a “back strain or sprain.”  Hopefully
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Do I need to file a workers’ compensation claim?

If you have been hurt on the job in Georgia, we recommend you report it to your supervisor as soon as possible.  Even the most minor accidents may end up costing the injured worker time and medical expenses.  Generally, your employer has paid for workers’ compensation insurance in the event that
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Bailey Granted Scholarship to Attend Association of Legal Administrators Regional Conference

November 4-5, 2011 – Charlotte, NC: Gail Bailey, Firm Administrator at Ramos & Law, was granted a scholarship to attend the Association of Legal Administrator’s Regional Conference in Charlotte, NC.
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Ramos Selected To Serve on Educational Panel at John Marshall’s Law School Seminar

November 3, 2011 – Atlanta, GA :  Bryan Ramos, attorney at Ramos & Law, was invited to serve on a continuing legal educational panel at the John Marshall Law School in Atlanta, Georgia.  The seminar was titled, “Solo Practitioner Boot Camp”.  The educational panel was designed to provide law students and practicing attorneys guidance as…
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Workers’ Compensation Doctors. What’s the deal?

If you have been injured on the job, the treating physician has been selected for you by the workers’ compensation insurance company.   It is not uncommon for these physicians to communicate with the
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Does my Employer have workers’ compensation insurance?

Generally, every Georgia Employer with 3 or more employees must carry workers’ compensation insurance.  There are some exceptions
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What is compensation for permanent partial disability (PPD)?

Georgia law defines PPD as a disability partial in character but permanent in quality resulting in a loss or loss of use of body members or from the partial loss of use of the injured employee’s body.  In other words,
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Injured in Thomaston, Georgia

Recently, we received a phone call regarding an injured worker in Thomaston, Georgia.  He was treated at Upson Regional Medical Center and then he was left on his own for medical treatment.  The hurt worker
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Kids Chance Charity Golf Classic

Kids Chance of Georgia helps support the children of Georgia’s seriously or fatally injured workers. On October 24, Kids Chance of Georgia is hosting a Charity Golf Classic at the Marietta Country Club.  You can register at the Kids Chance website. It should be a fun time and will benefit a worthy cause.
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Georgia Workers’ Compensation Payments Made in 2010

Georgia’s State Board of Workers’ Compensation released a “capsule look” at the 2010 financial information relating to workers’ compensation income and “medical only” benefits paid in 2010. The report was based on
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Workers’ Compensation Claims in Georgia for 2009

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 115,500 work accidents occurred in Georgia in 2009.  These work injuries included workers in the private sector as well as government employees.  Of the 115, 500 work injuries
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Rise in injuries expected as kids head back to school

It may sound a bit unbelievable but we expect to see an increase in injuries as the summer comes to a close and kids go back to school. This results from
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Job Fair August 23, 2011 – Crossroads Career Network

Crossroads Career Network in partnership with Georgia Dept. Of Labor – Gwinnett Career Center will be having their 7th Annual Job Fair on Tuesday, August 23, 2011
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Injured at AirServ?

In Atlanta, many of our employees work the Hartsfield – Jackson International Airport.  Recently, we represented a client who worked for The AirServ Corporation.  AirServ provides cargo, cleaning, security, and ramp handling for the aviation industry. In our case, an employee was responsible for cleaning the airplane cabins.  As
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Death benefits and Foreign (Alien) Dependents

In the unfortunate and tragic death caused by a work accident, the deceased employee’s spouse or children may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.  O.C.G.A. § 34-9-13.  There was an issue as to whether alien or foreign dependents were limited or excluded from these death benefits.  The Workers’ Compensation Act (prior to 1995) made an…
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Change of condition; Fictional New Date of Accident

What happens when an employee is hurt on the job, comes back, but then goes back out because of the work injury?  The problem that presents is itself is whether the reason for the disability is a “change of condition” of the previous injury or a “fictional new date of accident”.  The distinction can be…
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If I had a beer shortly before my work injury, am I barred from receiving workers’ compensation benefits?

Generally, no compensation is allowed for an injury or death due to an employee’s “willful misconduct.”  O.C.G.A. §34-9-17.   Moreover, if the injury or death of the employee is due to
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Does an injured worker have the right to a second opinion or independent medical evaluation?

Generally, an employee has the right to one independent medical examination with a physician of the injured worker’s choosing.  The doctor must be in Georgia or within 50 miles of the injured worker’s residence.  This second opinion or independent medical evaluation will be
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Messing up my workers’ compensation case

Recently, I had a Piedmont Hospital employee ask me how most clients “mess up” their workers’ compensation case.  After some thought, I advised her that the most common issue clients have is not
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Cagle’s to Close Pine Mountain Facility

Poultry workers employed at Cagle’s may be faced with added problems as Cagle’s will eliminate 300 positions at its Pine Mountain Valley, Georgia facility.  It is uncertain if these
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What is a “workers’ compensation mediation?”

Generally, a mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution.  The idea centers around the parties’ interest in finding a solution to the issue before the court, tribunal, or worker’s compensation board.  This process
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Bryan Ramos named one of the 25 Most Influential Asian Americans in Georgia

Georgia Asian Times has released its 6th edition of the 25 Most Influential Asian Americans in Georgia. Among the names is our founder and managing partner, Bryan Ramos. You can read the article and bio(s) here. There will be a dinner to honor all recipients on July 14 at Nam Phuong. Congratulations to Bryan!
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Hearing loss due to job duties

In situations where an employee becomes deaf or suffers an occupational hearing loss, recovery under the workers’ compensation act can be tough.  The statute governing such claims are very technical.  For example, an employee
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Delta Employee Injured on Job

In the past, our firm has represented employees who worked for Delta Airlines who injured themselves on the job.  Some employees injured themselves lifting luggage or baggage, while another
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Is the employer required to provide medical treatment because of a workers’ compensation injury?

Yes, the Workers’ Compensation Act provides that “Employer/Insurer shall furnish the employee entitled to benefits under this chapter such medical, surgical, and hospital care and other treatment, items and services which are prescribed by a licensed physician . . . reasonably required and appear likely to effectuate a cure, give relief, or restore the employee…
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What is Compensation for Permanent Partial Disability (PPD)?

The law defines PPD as a disability partial in character but permanent in quality resulting in a loss or loss of use of body members or from the partial loss of use of the injured employee’s body.  In other words, the PPD rating is a medical assessment as to whether the work injury permanently affected…
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Back injury cases

An injury to an employee’s back or neck can happen suddenly, or over time.  For example, many back injuries suddenly occur such as lifting heavy boxes of paper, beverages, or construction material.  This immediate pain is also accompanied by a limited range of motion and missed time from work.  In these situations, the injured employee…
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As an injured worker what kind of medical treatment am I entitled to?

Employers are required to furnish treatment for employees who have been injured on the job. This would include “medical, surgical, and hospital care and other treatment, items, and services which are prescribed by a licensed physician.”  This also includes prescription drug medication. In addition, medical benefits may include counseling, or may include home attendant care,…
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Settling my workers’ compensation case

If you have been injured on the job and you are considering settling your claim, please note that the insurance company does not have your best interest at heart.  In fact, they have a vested interested in minimizing your settlement as much as possible. With that being said, an injured employee and the Employer/Insurer may…
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The business of work injuries

On the job injuries are becoming more common as injuries include claims for carpal tunnel syndrome, epicondylitis, shoulder rotator cuff tears, knee injuries, and herniated or ruptured spinal discs.  If one of these injuries happened during the scope and course of your job, then workers’ compensation benefits may be given.  These benefits include income benefits…
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Aggravation of knee problems and workers comp benefits

Suppose a worker has prior knee problems but then re-injures or aggravates the knee while on the job.  Would this injury be accepted under workers’ compensation? Yes, provided that the aggravation or reinjury was the result of the employee’s work duties or responsibilities.  While the Employer/Insurer may have a few legal defenses against this claim…
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Our Office Has Moved!

We’re happy to announce that we have moved…but not far.  We are now located at 4 Lenox Pointe, Atlanta, Georgia.  All phone numbers and email addresses remain the same.
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Truck Driver Injured While Driving

Employees of trucking companies generally enjoy the same rights as other employees when it comes to workers’ compensation. The exception is the “owner-operator”. These owner-operators are specifically excluded from the Workers’ Compensation Act. The statute provides
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What does “full duty” or “normal duty” mean?

This is a magical term of art, science, and law. In the Georgia workers’ compensation realm, this medical certification functionally translates to the injured worker having no physical limitations related to any work injury. Generally taken, your Employer will assert that you are able to work with your normal job as if
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Bryan C. Ramos, 2011 Super Lawyers Rising Star, Georgia

Congratulations to Bryan Ramos who has been named as a Super Lawyers® 2011 Georgia Rising Star.
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Attacked by a customer, client or patient

Workplace violence appears to be occurring more and more each day. According to OSHA, workplace homicides are the fourth-leading cause of fatal occupational injury in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) determined that there were 521 workplace homicides in the preliminary count of 2009 in the United…
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Valentine’s Day brings joy to most but can mean injury for others

Thousands of people will be rushing to their favorite romantic restaurant this week for Valentine’s Day. In preparing for these meals, restaurant workers will be working very hard and have a greater likelihood of being injured. The
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Hurt While Working at Coca-Cola or in the Beverage Industry?

Coca-Cola (commonly known as “Coke”) is one of the world’s largest beverage companies. It is headquartered in Atlanta, GA and has several hundred employees. As such, Coke employees are generally covered under the Workers’ Compensation Act. Over the years, our firm has had the privilege of representing Coke employees and helping them secure their weekly…
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Bryan Ramos Named on the Board of Directors of PACCGA

Bryan Ramos, managing partner at Ramos & Law, has been named to the Board of Directors for The Philippine American Chamber of Commerce of Georgia.  The 2011 Board was inducted on
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Occupational Deaths: What Happens if a Worker Dies On The Job?

In the event of a compensable injury that results in the death of an employee, the employer is responsible for burial expenses (not to exceed $7,500). If the Employee has “dependents” who are completely dependent upon the employee’s wages for support at the time of the injury, those dependents are eligible for compensation. This is…
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Airline Employee Injured on the Job

Airline workers such as Delta employees, Airtran workers, and baggage handlers for both airlines are generally covered under workers’ compensation. If you have been injured on the job, you are entitled to immediate medical treatment. It is important to report the injury to your supervisor and accurately explain how the injury happened as a part…
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Workers’ Comp (Compensation) Prescriptions

According to a study published by the NCCI, the volume of prescription drugs dispensed by workers’ comp physicians to injured workers has risen sharply in recent years. It appears that Georgia workers’ comp physicians are amongst the highest dispensing in the country. Interestingly, Oxycontin has become the top
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Have you been injured while working as a Nurse in Georgia?

A recent Bureau of Labor Statistics study showed that registered nurses, nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants  experienced more musculoskeletal disorders and back injuries than any other profession.  This study supported that 12 percent of nurses in a hospital setting suffer these injuries.  Moreover, 17.3 percent of nurses in a nursing home setting experience these work-related…
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Injured While Working on a Construction Site in Georgia?

Many work place accidents occur at the construction sites in Atlanta as well as any other Georgia city or town .  It is important to understand that these injuries are not “just part of the job”.   These injuries must be reported appropriately and these workers should receive quality medical treatment.  Many construction employees feel irritated,…
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Workers Injured During Georgia’s Ice Storm

During the first winter snow storm of 2011, the City of Atlanta and the surrounding counties were paralyzed by the resulting ice.  While there were generally warnings to stay off the roads, many workers were required to return to work.  According to the local news, many workers suffered “slip and fall” injuries
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Workers Compensation Weekly Disability Benefits and Direct Deposit

Generally, if an employee sustains an on-the-job injury resulting in total disability, he or she is entitled to temporary total disability benefits (TTD) under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-261. The calculation of these benefits are determined
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AIG agrees to pay $100 Million fine for violation of workers’ comp regulations

The American Insurance Group Inc. has agreed to pay more than $100 million in fines and other penalties to resolve claims that the insurer violated workers’ compensation regulations. It agreed to pay about $46.5 million in
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Bryan Ramos Featured on Atlanta Bar’s Layman’s Lawyer Radio Show

On Saturday, December 11, 2010, Bryan Ramos was one of the featured workers’ compensation attorneys on the Atlanta  Bar’s Layman’s Lawyer which airs on The Zone.  Every week guest attorneys from different practice areas answer your questions. If you missed the show we’ll have the full clip on here soon.  Check back!
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For Attorneys: Ethical Considerations in Depositions

On Friday, December 17, 2010, Atlanta attorney David Thomas presented Ethical Considerations in Depositions, written by Bryan C. Ramos at a seminar hosted by NBI.  The presentation covered
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Ramos & Law Supports Local Walk to Defeat ALS

On Saturday, November 6, 2010, attorneys from the workers’ compensation firm, Ramos & Law, participated and raised funds in the 2010 Walk to Defeat ALS.  The attorneys walked for “Team Thomas” in memory of Don Thomas.  The event
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What happens at a Georgia workers’ compensation hearing?

One of the most common questions asked from claimants as we prepare for trial is what happens at the workers’ compensation hearing.  It is advisable that you call our office prior to proceeding to a hearing. Contact us today at(404) 355-3431. Essentially, the administrative law judge will review the admissible evidence regarding the specific issues…
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Can I have a workers’ compensation case and a personal injury case at the same time?

In some cases, an injury may arise out of and in the course of employment but it was caused by a third party’s actions.  In this particular situation, the injured worker will have a workers’ compensation case and potentially a personal injury matter.  In most cases
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I was hurt at my company picnic. Do I have a workers’ comp claim?

Under the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act, accidental injuries occurring while the employee is participating in a company sponsored event is compensable if
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Recorded workplace deaths in the U.S. in 2009

According to Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries program, the preliminary total of recorded workplace deaths in the U.S. during 2009 were approximately 4,340.  In 2008, the death totals were
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What does it mean to “settle” a case?

Essentially, settlement translates to a closure of the case. Generally, the Employer/Insurer will pay the injured employee a lump sum of money to relieve them of any past or future liability. The decision to settle a workers’ compensation must be a mutual one. The injured worker and the Employer/Insurer must agree to settle the case.…
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Could the insurance company be following me or taking surveillance of me?

The Employer/Insurer may place an injured employee “under surveillance”.  In theory, the insurance company uses surveillance to
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Change of Condition For The Worse

Generally, a “change in condition for the worse” is defined as a change in the injured employee’s wage earning capacity, physical condition, or status after the original “condition” was established under the law.  (O.C.G.A. § 34-9-104)  The original condition is usually the establishment of the worker’s weekly benefits or medical status. The injured employee has…
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Bryan Ramos Teaches Workers’ Compensation at Clayton State University

On June 24, 2010 Bryan Ramos will be a guest lecturer at Clayton State University.  He will be teaching a class on Georgia Workers’ Compensation at 7:00 pm. See the links below for the class material.  This information will be available on our site indefinitely by searching “Clayton State”.
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City of Atlanta layoffs

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, dozens of Atlanta city workers, including Department of Corrections and airport
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Workers’ Compensation statistics

In 2008, The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that almost 3.7 million nonfatal injuries and illnesses occurred on the job throughout the United States. In Georgia, the State Board of Workers’ Compensation cited that over 35,550 weekly
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Panibagong Simula – New Beginnings

Panibagong Simula (New Beginnings), that was the theme on Friday, May 21, 2010 as the Former President of the Philippines, Fidel V. Ramos, spoke regarding
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Brain Injuries and Financial Assistance for Injured Workers

Closed head injuries occur in workers’ compensation settings every year.  The Brain Injury Association of Georgia consists of survivors, family members, professionals and friends who have been impacted
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Home Depot cutting jobs – 150 in Atlanta; what’s the impact on workers’ comp claims

According to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, The Home Depot will be laying off 1,000 employees including 150 in Atlanta.  However, Home Depot is said to be adding 200 jobs in Atlanta in the near future.  Many of these jobs will be
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Hearing loss at work: potential changes to acceptable levels

Citing that nearly 22 million American workers are exposed to hazardous noise on a daily basis and that occupational hearing loss continues to plague industry workers, the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) requested a reduction of the
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Bryan Ramos announced as a 2010 Georgia Rising Star

Super Lawyers published their 2010 Georgia Super Lawyers and Rising Stars list this month.  Ramos & Law is proud to announce that Bryan Ramos has been selected as a Georgia 2010 Rising Star.
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Fuel Tank Company to be headquartered in Gainesville, GA

Yazaki Corporation will create 40 new jobs as it places its North American headquarters in Gainesville, Georgia.  This company makes fuel tanks for original manufacturers.  The company will occupy a 45,000 square foot building in the
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An increase in housing construction may lead to an increase in Workers’ Compensation claims

The Washington Post recently reported that housing construction posted a better-than-expected increase in January. This activity is the highest level in six months.  This slump has been the worst in decades. However, this gain provides
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What if I am terminated because of my injury?

Many injured workers are terminated because of their work injuries. If this occurs, the law provides relief under the Workers’ Compensation Act.  In these cases the employee may be entitled to TTD benefits to help replace his income while he continues his job search.  There are certain deadlines to be followed
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Pilgrim’s Pride Leaves Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

The chicken processing company, Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation, exited Chapter 11 bankruptcy in late December 2009. The company is a Texas based corporation that has many plants in Georgia.  This company spent
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Workplace injuries sustained by manufacturing employees

Injuries often occur in the manufacturing settings.  In December 2009, the U.S. manufacturing market expanded at the fastest pace in more than three years.  The Institute for Supply Management’s factory index rose to
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Deepest Sympathies to the Family of Georgia Paramedic Paul Holmes

Ramos & Law extends its deepest condolences to the family of Paul Holmes, a Georgia paramedic, who died early Monday morning at Grady Memorial Hospital.  It is the Firm’s understanding.
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IPE Rebroadcasts Law Office Management for the Paralegal: Legal Admin and Tech

On Friday, December 4, the Institute for Paralegal Education is rebroadcasting
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What benefits am I entitled to if my employer reduces my work hours and pay because of my workers’ compensation injury?

When an employer reduces the injured employee’s hours or pay because of her workers’ compensation accident, the employer may be required to pay a portion of the difference between the average weekly wage before the accident and the average weekly wage after the accident.  The difference in these wages would be taken at a 2/3…
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NCR Columbus Plant Opens on October 29, 2009

On October 29, the NCR Corporation opened its 350,000 sq. ft. ATM manufacturing facility in Columbus, Georgia.  Approximately 870 jobs will be created at the new Columbus facility over the next three years.  It has been reported
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Bryan Ramos Delivers Speech to the Ghandi Foundation of USA

On October 10, 2009, Bryan Ramos, the managing attorney at the Ramos Law Firm, represented the Filipino community to celebrate the 140th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Ghandi.  The event was held that the Martin Luther King Center in downtown Atlanta.  The event consisted of
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Ramos Participates in Walk for the Empowerment of Asians-Americans

On October 10, 2009, Bryan Ramos, an Asian workers’ compensation attorney, participated in the Center for Pan Asian Community Services’ (CPACS) “Together Empowering Asian-American Walk”.   The event was held at the CPACS center in Doraville, Georgia, and included numerous members from the various
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Ramos attends GALEO Hispanic Heritage Month Luncheon

On October 9, 2009, Bryan Ramos, the managing workers’ compensation attorney, attended the Georgia Association of Latin Elected Officials (GALEO)  Hispanic Heritage Month Luncheon at the Gwinnett Technical College in Lawrenceville, Georgia.   The keynote speaker was Juan Andrade, Ph.D., president of the U.S. Hispanic
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Update on the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation

There will soon be a few changes to the Georgia State Board of Workers’ Compensation.  Carolyn Hall, the current chairperson of the State Board of Workers’ Compensation, will be stepping down.  It is widely suspected
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Leveraging Technology to Manage Documents

On September 23, 2009 Gail Bailey presented Leveraging Technology to Manage Documents for the IPE Seminar Document Management In The Trenches.  
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How often can I see the workers’ compensation doctor?

When an injury on the job occurs, the Employer and their insurance carrier are responsible for furnishing medical treatment to the hurt employee.  However, the Employer and insurance carrier will generally have a
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What does “normal”, “full”, or “regular” duty really mean in my GA Workers’ Compensation claim?

In the world of workers’ compensation, the terms “normal duty”, “full duty”,  or “regular duty” work release has a significant effect on a work comp claim.  Essentially, the normal duty release allows the employer to unilaterally suspend income benefits.  In some cases, this regular duty release may give the employer the argument that no future treatment…
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Understanding Your Georgia Workers’ Compensation Claim

When an employee files a workers’ compensation claim in Georgia, the process may become confusing, frustrating, and costly.  Generally, the injured worker wants immediate medical care and income benefits because he or she got hurt on the job.  The insurance company, on the other hand
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Augusta, GA Paper Mill fined after an employee dies from injuries sustained at work

Recently, OSHA recommended a fine for an Augusta-based paper mill, International Paper, after an accident that killed a worker earlier this year. The Atlanta Business Chronicle reported that OSHA handed down 37 citations and proposed more than $120,000 in fines against
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Gainesville, Georgia Poultry Farm Fined for Endangering Workers

The local poultry plant, Mar-Jac, in Gainesville Georgia was recently fined almost $380,000 by OSHA. OSHA proposed $379,800 in penalties against Mar-Jac Poultry Inc., of Gainsville, Georgia, for safety and health violations. The company was cited with four willful violations with a
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Georgia’s Injured Employees and Workers’ Compensation

Generally, when an employee is injured in Atlanta or any other city in Georgia, the employee may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. These benefits are primarily made up of medical treatment as it relates to the work injury and income benefits to a certain point. In most cases, the Employer may
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Recent Court of Appeals Decision on Workers’ Compensation

The Georgia Court of Appeals recently reversed a decision rendered by the Superior Court of Lowndes County on the issue of appellate jurisdiction.  The case at bar was Strickland v. Crossmark, Georgia Court of Appeals, A09A0491 (06/26/09). In this case, the claimant was an employee at
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Bryan Ramos and Gail Bailey, Featured Presenters at Document Management In The Trenches

On September 23, 2009, Bryan Ramos and Gail Bailey will speak at the Cobb Galleria at a seminar hosted by the Institute for Paralegal Education.  The seminar
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Georgia Court of Appeals Clarifies Workers’ Comp Requirements for Tolling Statute of Limitations in Catastrophic Designation Cases

On July 9, 2009, the Georgia Court of Appeals delivered its opinion in the Kroger Company v. Wilson case (A09A1226).  In this matter, the Court specifically addressed the application of the statute of limitations provision to a change of condition/catastrophic designation case.
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Ramos & Law Attends Reception for Vice-President of Ecuador and Expands Latino Relations

In an effort to expand the Firm’s relations within the Ecuadorian community, Bryan Ramos attended a reception for Lenin Voltaire Moreno Garces, the Vice-President of Ecuador, sponsored by the Ecuadorian-American Chamber of Commerce on July 27, 2009 at the World Trade Center Atlanta.  In his address to the community, Vice-President Moreno spoke about
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Raising the Minimum Wage and its impact on Georgia Worker’s Compensation Claims

Today, many Georgia workers received a raise in pay.  The Georgia minimum wage was raised from $6.55 to 7.25 per hour. While there is a debate about whether this could prolong the recession, there will also be an impact on workers’ compensation claims. The first and most obvious will be the affect on
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What can I expect from the medical treatment workers’ comp provides me?

When an employee is injured on the job, he or she is either rushed to the hospital in severe cases or instructed to treat with Concentra or Urgent Care.  These places are industrial clinics that focus in minor occupational accidents.  If the injury requires more specialized care
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Meeting with your workers’ compensation attorney

When there is a meeting between an injured worker and his or her workers’ compensation attorney, it is important to be prepared for the meeting.  If it is the first meeting, the injured employee should insist on meeting with an attorney.  This is not to
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Technology Helps Law Firms Lower Cost

In today’s world everyone is looking for ways to save money. This holds true for both Ramos & Law and the injured workers we help. One way we are helping our clients save money is through the use of technology. Ramos & Law was
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Workers’ Compensation In the Latino or Hispanic Community

The Latino or Hispanic worker who is injured on the job may present unique issues not generally found in an ordinary Georgia workers’ compensation case. For example, the Latino or Hispanic worker may not speak English.  In these cases
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Georgia Workers’ Compensation Changes in 2009

Earlier this year we wrote about the proposed changes to the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act.  These changes have now taken effect. Following are some of the changes:
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Required “Notice” under Rule 201(b)

If an Employer/Insurer has controverted a workers’ compensation claim and the claim is later found to compensable, Board Rule 201(b) provides that “the employee is authorized to select one of the physicians who has provided treatment for the work-related injury prior to the acceptance of compensability, and after notice has been given to the employer,…
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My doctor considers my injuries disabling, another doctor does not, who has the final say?

In many situations, an employer and an employee will present conflicting testimony and evidence.  For example, an employee’s treating physician might classify an employee’s injury as disabling and catastrophic.  The employee will never to be able to work again.  While a doctor for
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Payment of Weekly Benefits by Electronic Transfer

A claimant may receive weekly income benefits, when an insurer voluntarily commences payment of benefits or when the Board orders payment benefits. Due to the financial pressures many claimants experience when they are unable to work
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Reporting the workers’ compensation injury

Being injured on the job can be embarrassing and some workers fail to report their injuries until the condition is much worse.  While this is understandable, the workers’ compensation law provides that the injured worker must report their accident to his or her supervisor as soon as possible and within 30 days after the accident. …
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Ramos & Law provides dinner to Genesis Shelter

In an effort to assist the homeless population in downtown Atlanta, Ramos & Law provided dinner to the residents of the Genesis Shelter on June 29, 2009.  The Genesis Shelter aims to provide an environment that allows homeless newborns to grow and develop in a nurturing and healthy surrounding.
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Workers’ Compensation Attorneys Featured On Radio Show

On June 25, 2009, Bryan Ramos and Adriana Sola Capifali were featured on channel 890 “Poderosa” to discuss workers’ compensation issues particular to the Hispanic worker.  The Georgia attorneys were
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State Employees are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits

It is not surprising that the largest employer of Georgia workers is the State of Georgia itself.  The State of Georgia has dozens of agencies from the State Accounting Office to the Department of Transportation.  Under the workers’ compensation code, state workers are included as eligible employees for benefits should they be injured on the…
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Attorneys Contribute Time In Educating Latino Community About Workers’ Compensation Rights

In conjunction with the Georgia State Bar and the YLD’s Minorities In the Profession Committee, the Ramos & Law organized and presented “Law Day” to the Latin American Association in Atlanta, Georgia on June 27, 2009. The event was designed to provide an educational forum to
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Make-A-Wish Foundation Recognizes Ramos & Law

Since it’s Friday we thought we’d keep it light today.  At Ramos & Law we like to promote community involvement and get involved ourselves.  Earlier this year several attorneys, staff members and their families participated in the Walk for Wishes to benefit
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How Will I Receive Medical Treatment if My Workers’ Comp Claim is Controverted

How Will I Receive Medical Treatment if My Workers’ Comp Claim is Controverted?

When the Employer/Insurer “controverts” or determines a workers’ compensation claim is not compensable, the Employer/Insurer will not pay for the injured Employee’s medical treatment. Consequently, the injured Employee will be responsible for finding a physician to treat with and for payment of his or her medical bills. This determination does not
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What Role Does Medical History Play in Workers’ Compensation Claims?

Most individuals enjoy a certain level of privacy regarding their medical history.  Most employees are weary about sharing intimate details about their medical history with the employer/insurer; however, pursuant to O.C.G.A. 34-9-207, the employer/insurer may be entitled to this information. In a Georgia workers’ compensation claim
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What is the value of my workers’ compensation case?

A common question that the Atlanta attorneys of Ramos & Law are asked is “how much is my case worth?”  While there is no amount of money that could fully compensate an injured worker for the pain and heartache she experiences, the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act provides a framework to consider. First, it is important…
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What happens at a workers comp hearing?

What Happens at a Workers’ Compensation Hearing?

Workers’ Compensation Hearings In a Georgia workers’ compensation case, neither party is not entitled to a jury trial. Instead, the injured worker or the employer is entitled to an “evidentiary hearing” before an administrative law judge (ALJ) with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation. This “bench trial” is considered injured workers’ or employer’s “day in…
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When is the Right Time to Settle My Workers’ Comp Case?

When is the Right Time to Settle My Workers’ Comp Case?

In our Georgia workers’ compensation practice, injured workers often ask, “when is the right time to settle my workers’ compensation claim?”  When considering that the fact that in an accepted workers’ compensation claim, the insurance company furnishes remedial medical care to the injured worker, we often recommend that the employee reach “maximum medical improvement” (MMI)…
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How long do I have to…file my claim, notify my supervisor, etc.

  If you are injured at work in Georgia there are several deadlines you should be aware of in order to preserve any potential workers’ compensation claim you may have.  First, you must give the employer notice of the injury within 30 days of the injury date.  (O.C.G.A. § 34-9-80).  You then have
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Referrals From The Authorized Treating Physician

With any injury or illness, it is common for a primary treating physician to find it necessary to refer the patient to another doctor for specialized care.  Obviously, in a workers’ compensation setting, this is also possible.  The question then arises, how does the Workers’ Compensation Act provide for such referrals?
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What Does a WC-104 Mean for Me and My Workers’ Comp Claim

What Does a WC-104 Mean for Me and My Workers’ Comp Claim?

After being involved in a work-related accident, you will undoubtedly appear for medical appointments with your authorized treating physician. At some point, in most claims, prior to being released to full duty, your authorized treating physician will release you to work with light duty restrictions.  That means
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Can my unborn child receive workers compensation benefits?

Let’s imagine for a moment that an employee is injured on the job on March 25, 2003.  At that time, the employee’s wife was pregnant.  The child was born on August 5, 2003.  The injured employee dies on September 1, 2003.  Would the newborn child be entitled to dependency benefits? Yes.  While an employer will…
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What can I do if my employer ignores my request for treatment authorization?

After an employee is injured on the job, they are permitted to seek treatment with one of many authorized physicians on a panel.  In some situations, that particular authorized physician may recommend additional treatment or testing from another physician.  When this happens,
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Can my personal health condition prevent me from obtaining workers compensation benefits?

In a recent case, a court was asked to decide whether an employee’s obesity was the primary cause of a work injury which would have prevented the employee from receiving benefits.  The court announced that the determining factor was whether the employee was injured while performing an activity that was part of his/her job. If…
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What Happens to My Health Insurance if I Settle My Claim?

One of the major concerns any person has when leaving a job, either voluntarily or involuntarily, is what to do about health insurance.  If the employee had health benefits with the employer, there is continuing coverage available through COBRA.  This coverage is typically
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Should I Apply for Social Security?

One of the questions that can be a source of great anguish is whether or not an injured employee should apply for Social Security Disability benefits.  It requires the employee to consider that he or she may never be able to return to be a productive member of the workforce.  The very thought of it…
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Does the Panel of Physicians Affect the Type of Medical Treatment I Will Receive?

Employers who are subject to the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act are required to post a panel of physicians.  The employer’s panel of physicians consists of medical facilities or individual physicians who are authorized to render treatment to employees injured on the job.  There are three types of panels employers may elect to post:
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Will my failure to wear my seat belt harm my workers’ comp claim?

Will my failure to wear my seat belt harm my workers comp claim?

There are many Americans that drive commercial vehicles as part of their daily job.  Since their jobs include driving, they must face the hazards of the roads and highways.  What happens if an employee is involved in a car accident while working, and he is not wearing a seat belt at the time of the…
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Why Isn’t My Case Moving Along More Quickly

If you have suffered a work-related injury and cannot work, you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Yet when an employer/insurer denies benefits for any reason, there can certainly be some frustration while waiting for results from a claim filed with the State Board of Workers’ Compensation.  That frustration
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Court of Appeals Decision: Change of Condition v. New Injury

The Georgia Court of Appeals recently issued an opinion in which it clarified one of the distinctions between a new injury and a change of condition.
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If I settle my Workers’ Compensation Claim, am I still entitled to my pension and retirement benefits?

When an employee settles his or her workers’ compensation claim, the Employer/Insurer usually requires the employee voluntarily resign.  At the settlement, many employees become concerned about their pension and/or retirement benefits, such as flight privileges, monetary bonuses, health insurance coverage, disability insurance coverage and numerous other perks.  Often times
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Ramos & Law Members Help Make Wishes Come True

Ramos & Law participated in the 2009 Walk For Wishes for the Make-A-Wish Foundation on Saturday, April 25, 2009, at Atlantic Station.  The Walk kicked-off with music, food, and stories from the children benefitting from the event.  Other teams included participants from Concentra Medical Clinic, Kohl’s, GMAC, and Carter Properties. The Walk was approximately two…
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Alumni Leaders Week at Johnson & Wales University

Most people probably have the notion that their attorney went to high school, undergrad, law school, and began practicing right away.  That is not necessarily the case. After I received my undergraduate degree at Ohio Wesleyan University, I attended Johnson & Wales University, where I received a degree in culinary arts.  In fact, I cooked…
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Are grandchildren considered dependents and eligible to receive death benefits?

In society today, it is not unusual to see grandchildren living with their grandparents.  Under the workers’ compensation laws are grandchildren considered dependents?  Biological children of an employee that are under age 18 are considered dependents. Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-13, a “child” also includes dependent stepchildren, legally adopted children, posthumous children, and acknowledged children…
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Providing Information To Your Workers’ Compensation Attorney To Help Your Claim

In preparing to discuss a claim with a workers’ compensation attorney, it is important for the injured worker to gather up all the information about the injury he or she can to provide to the attorney.  However, it does not stop there.  In assessing a litigation strategy in a workers’ compensation claim, it is important…
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Can an employee injured on his way home from working out of town get compensation?

Let’s assume the following facts: An employee works for a construction company based in Atlanta, Georgia; he is assigned to a construction project in Alabama; his employer is not reimbursing the employee for time and travel in the employee’s personal car to the remote location; on his way home to Atlanta on a Friday afternoon…
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Make-A-Wish Walk

On April 25, 2009 members from Ramos & Law and their families will participate in the Make-A-Wish Walk at Atlantic Station Central Park. The pre-event activities will begin at 8:30 am and the 2 mile walk/run will begin at 10:30 am.  This event will raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  For more information or to…
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Now that I’m Enrolled in the Injured Workers’ Pharmacy, What Happens with My Prescriptions?

For Claimants who are enrolled in the Injured Workers Pharmacy program, there is not much for you to worry about when it comes to filling prescription medication.  Many claimants often have questions
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Lies about Past Injuries Can Harm a Claimant’s Workers’ Comp Case

Pursuant to the case law presented in Georgia Electric Company v. Rycroft, 259 Ga. 155, 378 S.E.2d 111 (1989), an employee’s claim for workers’ compensation benefits may be denied if the employer can prove that the employee lied about old injuries.
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Injured during a break at work in Georgia

The Appellate Division recently examined two different scenarios in which a worker was injured while performing tasks that were not part of their job duties and came up with two different results. In the first case,
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Changes to the workers’ compensation law – House Bill 330

On March 20, 2009, the Georgia Senate passed and adopted House Bill 330 without opposition.  This appears to be the bill recommended by the SBWC Chairperson’s Advisory Committee. Notably among the proposed legislative changes, there is a significant modification with regard to the form medical releases (WC-207).
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My workers’ comp stipulation was approved, when should I expect a check?

Once a stipulation agreement is approved by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation, the employer generally has 20 days to make the payment. The question arises, then – if a payment is mailed, when does it have to be mailed to be considered timely?
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Death and Georgia’s Workers’ Compensation Claims

From time to time an injured worker will file a workers’ compensation claim and subsequently die before the resolution of the claim. This is always a sad situation and it can leave the surviving family members and the deceased’s former employer uncertain as to the proper way to handle the pending claim.  Initially, one might…
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Injury in Restroom Deemed Compensable

Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1(4), an employee’s injury may be compensable only if it is an injury “by accident arising out of and in the course of” the employee’s employment.  However, even in a case in which an employee is injured during a non-scheduled break the employee’s claim still may be deemed compensable. A court…
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When the Workers’ Comp Exclusive Remedy Provision does not Apply

In general, the Workers’ Compensation Act provides protection for the employers and insurers from tort actions. This protection is known as the “exclusive remedy provision.” The provision exists to protect the employers and insurers from additional exposure after being legally required to provide benefits without proof of any level of intent or negligence. This protection…
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Employee Injured During Fight May Not Qualify for Benefits

Pursuant to State v. Purmont, 143 Ga. App. 269, 238 S.E.2d 268 (1977), if an employee is injured in an attack by another employee, the employee must not have been the aggressor in order to be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. When asserting an aggressor defense under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-17(a), it is the employer that…
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Consideration Before Settlement

As we have discussed on our blog site on numerous occasions, the Workers’ Compensation Act provides somewhat limited remedies for people who have been injured at work. The limited nature of the remedy leads to what are sometimes surprisingly low settlement offers.  Based upon these low offers, the injured worker should probably take several things…
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The term “physician” has a broad definition in Workers’ Comp

In a recent ruling by the Appellate Division, a neuropsychologist is a “physician” defined by O.C.G.A. § 34-9-201(a).  Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-201(a),
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Is There a Timeframe for Reporting an On-The-Job Injury?

The Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act requires an injured employee report an on-the-job accident to a supervisor or employer agent shortly after the incident.  Please see O.C.G.A. § 34-9-80.  The employee is required to give the Employer or its agents notice of an on-the-job accident so that the Employer can investigate the incident, and most importantly,…
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Hippotherapy Determined to be Compensable

At the request of an employee confined to a wheelchair, the Board was asked to determine whether payment for a horse barn where the employee kept his horse was compensable. The employee testified that he benefited both from riding and taking care of his horse.  He not only increased his range of motion and strength,…
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Exceptions to Coverage Under Georgia’s Workers’ Compensation Laws

The Georgia Court of Appeals recently handed down a decision in Clarke v. Country Home Bakers, 2008 WL 4603604 (2008), regarding whether a prisoner injured while working in a work release program was eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. The Court affirmed the decision of the lower courts in denying benefits. At issue was whether the…
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What is ADR and how does it help?

Recently, the Daily Report sat down with some alternative dispute resolution [ADR] experts to discuss how ADR can reduce the costs of litigation. There are three principal types of ADR that are commonly used.  Mediations are commonly used for
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Georgia Workers’ Comp Bill Presently Before The House

On February 25, 2009, the House Committee on Industrial Relations offered a substitute to House Bill 330, which directly affects the current Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act (Chapter 9 of Title 34 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated). The proposed law change:
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Death and the Medicare Set-Aside

A colleague recently asked me what happens to the funds placed in an established Medicare Set-Aside when the injured employee/beneficiary dies before the funds are completely exhausted. Since my legal responsibility usually ends once an MSA is established I did not readily know the answer to this question and I had to dig through old…
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New York Prepares to Close Second Injury Fund

As of 07/01/07, the self-insured employers and the carriers in New York can no longer file claims for reimbursement with the Special Funds Conservation Committee under Section 15-8. In other words, for claims with dates of accident or dates of disablement of 07/01/07 or later,
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Second Injury Fund in North Carolina Still Active

In North Carolina, the Industrial Commission disburses moneys from the Second Injury Fund. In order to qualify for compensation for a second injury, the original and the subsequent injury must be at least twenty percent (20%) of the entire body, and, the additional compensation cannot exceed
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Catastrophic Does not Necessarily Mean Forever

In 2005, the Georgia State Legislature amended O.C.G.A 34-9-200.1 to include section (i). Pursuant to section (i), when a claimant has been deemed catastrophic, either by the employer or the State Board, it is possible to request new determination as to the catastrophic or non-catastrophic nature of the employee’s injury. The only requirement is that…
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An IME Physician May Request Patient Undergo More Testing

In Georgia, as long as an employee is receiving compensation benefits, then he shall submit himself to examinations ordered by a qualified physician.  Independent Medical Examinations (IME) are common in workers’ compensation cases.  They give the employer or the Board a chance to determine
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Would Kevin Garnett’s knee injury be considered a workers’ compensation claim?

In last night’s match against the Utah Jazz, Kevin Garnett left the game late in the first half after straining his right knee as he attempted to complete a high “alley-oop” pass from Paul Pierce. If Kevin was playing for the Atlanta Hawks, this could be a potential Georgia workers’ compensation claim.  First, we would…
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The Effect Ongoing Medical Payments Have on Medicare Set-Asides

As a general rule federal law requires parties involved in workers’ compensation claim to consider Medicare’s interests in the event of a settlement. 42 CFR 411.46. However there is one major exception to this rule.
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Types of Second-Injury Funds

The two major types of second-injury funds are reimbursement funds and take-over funds. In both of these situations, the employer/insurer can reduce liability when the fund becomes liable.
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Thoughts On The SITF

With the Georgia legislature now back in session, it makes me consider the fate of the SITF and its impending sunset.  While it does not appear that the legislature will consider any new measures for the SITF in this session, I would certainly wish
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Taxes and Medicare Set-Asides

As April 15th draws nearer and my mailbox starts to fill with W-2 and yearly interest statements I am reminded of the old adage, only two things in life are certain; Death and Taxes.  Oddly enough my recent dealings with Medicare Set-Asides
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Employee May be Given New Date of Injury if Condition Worsens

Under Georgia workers compensation rules, an employee who gets injured on the job but continues to work should not be penalized. For example, an employee sustains a neck and back injury while on the job in 2001. The employee receives
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Can Catastrophic Designation be Removed?

The answer to the question for claims that arose in July 2005 or later is simple. Yes. O.C.G.A. 34-9-200.1(i) was enacted in 2005 to provide a mechanism by which a the catastrophic status of an individual can be revisited if reasonable grounds exist to challenge the current status. The prerequisite
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TPD Rates are not Automatic

O.C.G.A § 34-9-262 provides: “. . . where the disability to work resulting from the injury is partial in character to temporary in quality, the employer shall pay or cause to be paid to the employee a weekly benefit equal to 2/3 of the difference between the average weekly wage before the injury and the…
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Drinking and Georgia’s Workers’ Compensation Law Don’t Mix

Occasionally, when the members of Ramos & Law are preparing to defend an employer against a workers’ compensation claim we come across evidence indicating that the injured employee may have been intoxicated when he was injured at work.
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Preparing for Mediation

Mediation is an informal means to try to resolve a claim quickly without the need for Court intervention. If both parties approach mediation in good faith, a resolution can often be reached. While informal,
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Can I seek Experimental medical treatment for my injury?

Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-200(a), an employer must furnish an injured worker such medical treatment which, in the judgment of the Board, is
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Employer Must Provide 10 Days Notice Before Suspending Indemnity Benefits

According to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-221(i) “where compensation is being paid with or without an award and an employer or insurer elects to controvert on the grounds of a change in condition or newly discovered evidence, the employer shall, not later than 10 days prior to the due date of the first omitted payment of income…
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Recent Court of Appeals Decision – Change of Condition

The Georgia Court of Appeals made an interesting decision on July 10, 2008 in United Grocery Outlet v. Bennett, 292 Ga.App. 363 (2008). In essence, the decision states
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Lucy Hall-Gainer Honored on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

The Mary Hall Freedom House (MHFH), located in Sandy Springs, seeks to improve the quality of life of women and women with children by empowering them to break the cycle of addiction, poverty, and homelessness.  The house accomplishes these goals by
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Playing the Percentages – Apportionment of Occupational Disease Claims

In general, the burden of proving an occupational disease is quite heavy.  One must show that a disease was caused by the job and nothing else.  If the disease
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King Day: A Day On, Not A Day Off for the Ramos & Law

On January 19th, four members of the Ramos & Law joined the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys (GABWA) in a volunteer project at the Mary Hall Freedom House. 
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Recent Court of Appeals Decision – Death Benefits

The Court of Appeals recently published its decision in Sherman Concrete Pipe Co. v. Chinn, 283 Ga. 468 (2008).  Although limited in its application, it is an excellent
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Why Can’t I Recover for Pain and Suffering?

One of the questions we hear all the time is why a claimant cannot recover for their pain and suffering.  The Workers’ Compensation Act provides a number of important benefits to the injured employee but does not allow for pain and suffering.  It can provide income benefits
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Appellate Division defines “litigation expenses and fees”

In an appeal before the Workers Compensation Appellate Division, an employee argued that an ALJ erred in assessing paralegal expenses as a litigation cost.  Pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-108(b)(4),
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Legal Administration and Technology

On January 16, 2009, Gail Bailey presented Legal Administration and Technology at the Law Office Management for the Paralegal seminar offered by Institute for Paralegal Education.  This was telecast via the web so attendees were not only in Atlanta but nationwide. 
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General Law Office Administration

On January 16, 2009 Gail Bailey presented at the Law Office Management for the Paralegal seminar offered through the Institute for Paralegal Education.  At the seminar,
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Why Hernias can Present Obstacles for Recovery

While it may not seem to make any sense, the Georgia Legislature has created a five part test in order to recover for hernia injuries. All prongs of this test must be met in order for a hernia to be deemed compensable
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Workers’ Compensation Coverage for Partners & Sole Proprietors

Company stakeholders, such as partners and sole proprietors, may reap financial and other special benefits from the companies they work for but they are disadvantaged when it comes to Workers’ Compensation coverage. Georgia law treats these types of workers directly opposite from corporate executives. The law presumes
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“Volunteer” by simply going to the circus!

If you read our post yesterday on volunteer opportunities and want to help but just don’t think you have time right now, consider this. You can help by simply going to the circus!
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Serving breakfast on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

For the past two years we have asked our employees to volunteer with the charity of their choice on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. This year half of our firm has decided to volunteer with GABWA and serve breakfast for families of Cascade House and Genesis.
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Unprecedented growth Contributes to Closing of Georgia SITF

The unprecedented growth of the Georgia SITF over the past few years reportedly indicates growth of a substantial unfunded liability. These ever-rising liabilities, coupled with incentives to submit cases into the Fund and increasing assessments, have been a recipe for financial disaster that the Georgia Legislature has now addressed.
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Are expenses incurred prior to 2003 reimbursable?

The 2003 amendment to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-203, effective July 1, 2003, added paragraph (c)(4), imposing a one year limitation period on the filing of reimbursement claims. While this amendment imposed a one year filing limitation
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Workers’ Compensation Settlement and Medicare Set-Asides

Developing a Medicare Set-Aside makes it easy for insurers to consider Medicare’s interests during workers’ compensation negotiations. Federal law requires that employers, group health plans, and insurance companies, consider the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) interests during the settlement of workers’ compensation claims. There are several ways the parties may consider CMS’s interests
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Happy Holidays

We just wanted to take a minute to wish everyone a happy holiday season.
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Workers’ Compensation Coverage for Corporate Officers

High atop the corporate ladder sits the corporate executives who survey their company’s landscape and strive to make decisions that will positively affect the business’ future. But, what happens when one of these corporate executives falls from a ladder or slips on a banana in the break room and injures herself?
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Subrogation – Fact or Fiction?

O.C.G.A. 34-9-11.1(b) provides that when an employee has a cause of action against a third-party tortfeasor in a work-related accident and the employer has paid
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What is a Workers’ Compensation Deposition?

A workers’ compensation deposition is the taking and recording of testimony of a witness under oath before a court reporter in a place away from the courtroom before trial. This is a very
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Failure to Pay Awarded Benefits Can Resort in Multiple Fees and Penalties

In a recent appeal before the Workers Compensation Appellate Division, an employer/insurer argued that an ALJ erred in finding that an employee is entitled to “overlap” a 20% penalty for untimely payment of benefits payable under the terms of an award and
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Is there a statute of limitations for filing a workers comp claim?

An injured worker must give the employer notice within 30 days of the accident. O.C.G.A. § 34-9-80. Actual notice or written notice is also sufficient. Additionally, the injured worker has one (1) year from the date of injury or last remedial medical treatment to file his or her notice of claim with the State Board.…
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Richard Pimentel at the Annual WC Law Institute in St. Simons

A few months ago the attorneys at the Ramos Law Firm attended the annual Workers’ Compensation seminar on St. Simons Island, Georgia. Among the usual updates on case law and MSA’s was a most remarkable lecture on ethics. The speaker was Richard Pimentel, whose life story inspired the motion picture Music Inside. His life
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Kids’ Chance Raises Money for Children of Injured Workers

Kids’ Chance, Inc. is a nonprofit corporation originally developed by the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar of Georgia, in association with insurers, employers, attorneys, labor, medical, and rehabilitation groups. The purpose of Kids’ Chance, Inc. is to provide financial scholarships for children of permanently or catastrophically injured or deceased workers to complete their…
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Help Me, Help You! – A Primer on Working with an Attorney

Sustaining an injury at work can be a terrifying and confusing experience. Seeking medical treatment and ultimately paying for treatment only adds to the fear and confusion. Federal and Georgia law tries to minimize the fear and confusion through its Workers’ Compensation regulations. These government entities primarily developed their regulations
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What is an Orthopedic Specialist?

The State Board of Workers’ Compensation requires that an employer have at least one panel physician who specializes in orthopaedic surgery. Many injured employees are puzzled at exactly what that means. Orthopaedics is a branch of medicine that addresses the prevention or correction of injuries or disorders of the skeletal system and associated muscles, joints,…
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Recent Appellate Division Decisions – Panel of Physicians

Every year at the Workers’ Compensation seminar, there is a discussion of recent Appellate Division decisions.  Although they are not binding precedent, there is often a great deal of guidance to be gleaned from these discussions.  One recent decision from the Appellate Division was with regard to the employer’s duty to maintain a posted panel…
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Failure to Comply with Rules May Result in Employee’s Choice of Any Physician

Board Rule 202(c) provides in pertinent part that when an employer fails to properly provide the procedures for selection of physicians, the employee is authorized to select a physician who is not listed on the employer’s panel of physicians. That physician so selected becomes the authorized treating physician, and the employee may make
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If Injured on My Way to Work, Can I File a Workers’ Comp Claim?

An injury that occurs on the employer’s premises is usually considered to arise in the course of employment. When an employee is injured on the employer’s premises or property controlled and/or maintained by the employer on their way to or from work, the accident is considered to
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Am I Considered an Employee for Purposes of Seeking Benefits?

Outside the field of workers’ compensation, people will loosely refer to an individual as an employee or independent contractor. However, in the field of workers’ compensation these titles are not interchangeable as the Georgia Workers’ Compensation Act distinguishes “employees” from “independent contractors.” An employee is
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The SCHIP Extension Act – Changing How Insurers Do Business

Workers’ compensation insurers will have to change the way they do business, starting July 1, 2009. On this date, the SCHIP Extension Act of 2007 will take effect, forcing
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What is Subrogation?

Essentially, subrogation is the assumption of legal rights of someone whose debts or expenses have been paid. The simplest example is when an employee is injured in a car accident with a third party.  Assuming that the employee was not at fault and the accident arose out of and in the course of employment,
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Benefits of Settling a Claim when the SITF is Involved…

Settlement may occur prior to OR following SITF acceptance of a claim. In the case where a claim is settled prior to SITF acceptance, SITF does not consider itself a party to the agreement and is not subject to its provisions. When settlement negotiations are initiated during the evaluation process, SITF must be notified by…
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Halloween 2008 – A treat for the State’s newest Bar members

Ramos & Law is pleased to announce our newest associate, Tiffany K. Yamini.  Mrs. Yamini, along with several of her classmates, received her passing Bar results on Halloween day. Mrs. Yamini is a graduate of Mercer University and had previously clerked with our firm.  She now rejoins us to concentrate her practice on Medicare Secondary…
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23 Presumptive Medical Conditions

In order for an employer/insured to be eligible for reimbursement from the Subsequent Injury Trust Fund, the employee’s subsequent injury must be directly caused by the prior impairment. The employer must show that this prior impairment was permanent and likely to be a hindrance to employment. Any pre-existing, permanent condition qualifies. The condition may be…
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What Benefits May the Employee Receive?

Employees are potentially entitled to the Five Pillars of Workers’ Compensation: (i) Temporary Total Disability; (ii) Temporary Partial Disability; (iii) Permanent Partial Disability; (iv) Medical care / treatment; and (v) Rehabilitation care and counseling. Assuming the claim is compensable, the Employee may receive two-thirds of his average weekly wage, but not more than $500.00 for…
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What are the Employer’s Rights and Duties?

Along with the shield against tort claims that arise out of and in the course of employment, Employers have the unique right of controlling who the injured Employee treats with after the accident. The Employer is required to post a list of physicians who the Employer has confidence will treat its Employee’s fairly. This list…
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RLF Attorneys Attend Advanced WC Institute In St. Simons

Bryan Ramos, James Timmons, Adriana Sola Capifali and Julia Lindsey participated in the annual Advanced Workers’ Compensation Institute in St. Simons Island, Georgia. The Institute’s meetings were held from October 2 through October 4. During this time, one topic discussed was
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What is Considered a Workers’ Comp Injury?

The law provides that an “injury by accident arising out of and in the course of employment” shall be considered a workers’ compensation injury. O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1(4). Hence, the Employee must show that she suffered an (i) injury by accident; that (ii) arose out of employment; AND was (iii) in the course of employment. To…
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Violating the Medicare Secondary Payer Act Can Hurt Insurers’ Bottom Line

Not accounting for Medicare’s interest during workers’ compensation settlements can lead to shortfalls in insurers’ bank accounts. Under the Medicare Secondary Payer Act (MSP), the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has the right to seek reimbursement of medical expenses paid by Medicare, which the workers’ compensation carrier should have made. [1] The Act…
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Employers: Don’t Cut Corners on Workers’ Compensation

Who is Required to Have Workers’ Compensation?

Employers are required to provide prompt medical and disability benefits to Employees for injuries sustained on the job, resulting in partial or total incapacity or death. Every employer, individual, firm, association, or corporation, regularly employing three (3) or more persons, part-time or full-time, shall provide workers’ compensation insurance coverage. Employers subject to the workers’ compensation…
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Who, What, and How will the Georgia SITF reimburse me?

Any insurance company licensed in Georgia to issue workers’ compensation policies or self-insured employer authorized by the State Board of Workers’ Compensation is eligible to file a claim for potential reimbursement from the Subsequent Injury Trust Fund. The employer/insurer should forward a letter to the fund stating a desire to actively pursue the claim. The…
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Do I Have to Go to My Appointment?

The Workers’ Compensation Act provides that an employer must provide medical care to an injured worker which is likely to “effect a cure, give relief, or restore the employee to suitable employment.” O.C.G.A. 34-9-200(a). While providing medical benefits to the employee for a work-related injury, the employer may request examinations for the employee “at reasonable…
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Can I Afford An Attorney to Represent Me in My WC Claim?

Many injured workers are concerned about how their attorney will get paid. In the field of workers’ compensation, claimant’s attorneys are generally paid on a contingency basis. The contingency fee structure ensures that injured workers, who do not have money to retain an attorney at the inception of a claim, are able to obtain legal…
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What is the Subsequent Injury Trust Fund?

The Subsequent Injury Trust Fund was enacted in 1977 to reduce the impact of singularly-large-workers’ compensation claims in the event a worker with a disability, injured on the job, aggravates a pre-existing impairment. The fund helps workers with disabilities by providing employers, who are not subject to the American’s with Disabilities Act, with the incentives…
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Everyone Has the Right to Vote

Everyone has the right to vote and RLF’s associates are aiding the cause. That is the motto of the Election Protection coalition and an idea that all Americans can support. The nonpartisan Election Protection coalition is made up of more than 100 local, state, and national partners who work to ensure that all voters have…
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Run for Kids’ Chance 2008

On September 6, 2008, a large group of attorneys and other participants gathered at Druid Hills High School in Atlanta, Georgia. For this event, there were no suits and ties. Rather, at this event, running shoes and shorts were the attire of the day. The event was the Run for Kids’ Chance 2008 – a…
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Systems to Increase Productivity

In August of 2007, Mrs. Gail Bailey was a presenter at the Organization and Time Management Strategies for Paralegals seminar
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What is the workers’ compensation “panel of physicians”?

A Panel of Physicians is the Employer/Insurer’s pre-approved list of doctors for workers’ compensation injuries. Georgia Law O.C.G.A. § 34-9-200 requires an employer to maintain a list, or panel, of six (6) different physicians, professional associations or corporations of physicians that an employee must select from to treat his on-the-job injury. At least one of…
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What medical benefits must a company provide to be compliant with Georgia Workers’ Compensation Law?

Georgia law requires an employer to maintain a list or panel of six (6) different physicians, professional associations or corporations of physicians that an employee must select from to treat his on the job injury. Georgia law requires that one of the six physicians must be an orthopedic surgeon who specializes with hand and upper…
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When are Workers’ Compensation Income Benefits Paid?

Generally, Employees are not entitled to workers’ compensation income benefits for the first seven (7) calendar days during the period of disability. However, if the employee is disabled for more than twenty-one (21) consecutive days after the injury, then the first seven (7) days will be paid. The Employer has 21 days to either deny…
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What is Georgia workers’ compensation?

Workers’ compensation is a system created by the Georgia government to provide workers “immediate” income supplements and medical benefits as a result of an accident that occurred on the job. Many times people refer to the system as “workmen’s compensation”. However, given the fact that women make up a great portion of the work force,…
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