Compassionate Help for Injured Workers

If you've been injured on the job, you know how it feels to be second-guessed. You're wondering if you'll be treated fairly or not. My mission is to make sure you know your rights and responsibilities and that you obtain all the benefits the law allows. Call me at 1-888-694-0174 or 334-702-0000.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Alabama Senator Proposed Harsh Changes to the Workers' Compensation Law

Senator Arthur Orr represents District 3 which consists of Limestone, Madison, Morgan Counties in northern Alabama.  Sen. Orr has indicated he will be introducing a bill in the next legislative session to make changes to Alabama’s workers’ compensation law.   He says the changes will help in job creation.  The truth is, they will help insurance companies keep more of the premiums they collect.

These changes will apply to every Alabama worker who is unfortunate enough to be injured on the job. 

Not surprisingly, the changes will only benefit employers and insurance companies.  Who will pay for these changes?  The injured workers.

Sen. Orr’s proposed bill would make it illegal for a judge to consider the injured’s worker’s pain in most cases.  If you get hurt on the job and have severe pain that your doctors believe to be credible, too bad - - the judge cannot consider your pain.

If a worker’s job-related injury is such that he is permanently and totally disabled, current law allows him to receive workers’ compensation benefits for the rest of his life.  Sen. Orr’s proposed bill would let the insurance company off the hook as soon as the worker reaches age 65.  This proposed change will benefit insurance companies at a time when most workers are living longer lives and at a time when you have to turn 67 to collect Social Security benefits.

What else is Sen. Orr wanting to give to the insurance companies?  Under current law, probably the most generous aspect of the law is that medical treatment remains open for life after a job-related accident.  Sen. Orr wants to change that so that if an injured worker goes without medical treatment for a certain time period, the right to receive medical is over.  The insurance companies win; the injured worker loses.

Finally, what happens if you go to trial in your workers’ compensation case and win? Sen. Orr wants to give the appeals courts the right to re-weigh the evidence and decide whether to over turn the trial judge’s decision.

What does Sen. Orr give back to injured workers in exchange for helping the insurance companies?  He gives them a $20.00 per week raise and increases the amount of permanent partial disability benefits from $220.00 per week to $240.00 per week.  Put another way, at a time when minimum wage is $7.25 per hour or $290.00 per week, the rate paid to injured workers will increase from $5.50 an hour to $6.00 per hour.  If a worker suffers a severe injury on the job and is 99 percent disabled or less, he is capped at $220.00 per week under Alabama’s unfair law but Sen. Orr will “allow” injured workers another $20.00.

            What can you do?  Call Senator Orr and tell him injured workers deserve better.   Contact him at (256) 355-3285 or (334) 242-7891.

What is Avvo?

First - check my Avvo profile:

The Avvo Rating is our effort to evaluate a lawyer's background, based on the information we know about the lawyer. The rating is calculated using a mathematical model that considers the information shown in a lawyer's profile, including a lawyer's years in practice, disciplinary history, professional achievements and industry recognition - all factors that, in our opinion, are relevant to assessing a lawyer's qualifications.
For some lawyers, the only information we have been able to collect is the publicly available information from state bar associations or other organizations that license lawyers. If that is all we have, then we display an Avvo Rating for the lawyer of either "Attention" or "No Concern." We display the "Attention" rating if there is information in the licensing records that, in our opinion, you should pay attention to, such as a disciplinary action against a lawyer without offsetting positive information. Otherwise, we display the "No Concern" rating.
We periodically collect background data from multiple sources, including state bar associations, court records, lawyer websites, and information that lawyers choose to provide to Avvo. Please keep in mind that we are not able to collect every piece of information about every lawyer's background. Information that we do not have could very well change the lawyer's Avvo Rating. So whether you see the numerical or the basic Avvo Rating, you should do further research regarding the lawyer to collect all relevant information regarding the lawyer's background.
Here's why the Avvo Rating can help you find the right lawyer:
  • It's unbiased. Because ratings are calculated using a mathematical model, all lawyers are rated by the same standards.

  • There's no favoritism. Here at Avvo, all lawyers are treated equally. They can't pay to change their ratings, and we don't play favorites to lawyers we know.

  • It's developed by legal experts for non-experts. The model used to calculate the Avvo Rating was developed with input from hundreds of attorneys, thousands of consumers, and legal experts.

  • It's easy to understand. With simple ratings from 1 to 10 or "Attention" and "No Concern," we hope to make clearer the murky process of understanding lawyers' backgrounds.