Division Gets Pushback, Support For Draft QME Regulations

Draft regulations to boost the training and educational requirements for qualified medical evaluators (QMEs), including anti-bias training that the Division of Workers’ Compensation agreed to require of QMEs two years ago, generated significant feedback from employers and providers alike. The Division is reviewing 20-some pages of comments in preparation for starting the formal rulemaking process. … Read More »

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Breast Cancer PD Bill Clears Committees

California’s legislators are focusing on the Feb. 16th deadline for bill introduction for this the second year of the session. But one workers’ comp measure left over from 2017 is already moving in the statehouse. Carried by Assemblyman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego), an applicant’s attorney, AB 479 renews previous efforts to increase permanent disability … Read More »

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DIR Defends Record On Gender Issues

Applicant and plaintiff attorneys have opened a new front in the attack on workers’ comp with a class action lawsuit alleging the system discriminates against women. The lawsuit alleges that the state is failing to prevent discrimination against women in the workers’ comp system and in some cases may even be furthering it. The Brown … Read More »

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Court Clarifies, Limits Ogilvie Rebuttals

A California Court of Appeal decision is being hailed as a victory for employers. The Court is telling the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board to reconsider how it applies the Ogilvie criteria for rebutting the permanent disability rating schedule (PDRS) to increase awards for injured workers. The court overturned the Board’s award of a 79% PD … Read More »

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Workers’ Comp Gender Bias Bill Clears Assembly

The California Legislature is continuing its work of helping to drive even more employers out of California.  This time, it is making quick work of a bill aimed at eliminating alleged gender biases in the setting of permanent disability awards and determining apportionment. It is another stab at establishing special “rights or privileges” for one … Read More »

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Court Tosses Pro Player’s Workers Comp Claim

Workers’ compensation defense attorneys are hailing a recent Second District Court of Appeals decision that reels in the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board’s overzealous application of California jurisdiction to claims by out-of-state professional athletes. The ruling overturns a WCAB decision to retain jurisdiction over a workers’ comp cumulative trauma (CT) claim filed by a former Women’s … Read More »

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AMA Guides Ratings Good Predictor of Earning Losses, Study Finds

California’s approach to paying benefits to permanently disabled workers is out of whack with reality and shifts too much money to higher-rated cases. That’s one of the initial conclusions from an ongoing study looking at permanent disability ratings under the AMA Guides. The preliminary findings from Seth Seabury of RAND Corp. indicate that earnings losses … Read More »

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State Fund Seeks Supreme Court Review of Almaraz

Attorneys for State Compensation Insurance Fund (SCIF) are asking the California Supreme Court to overturn the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board’s decision in the Almaraz case after the Fifth District refused to review the case. The underlying decision gives physicians greater latitude in how they determine an injured worker’s level of permanent disability by allowing them to … Read More »

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