Firm Success Stories 2012
In Kathleen Clearly v. Decatur Memorial Hospital the Petitioner was claiming that she needed a lumbar fusion as a result of an accident at work. We prevailed at the Commission and on December 13, 2011 the Circuit Court of Macon County affirmed the Commission’s decision denying the petitioner’s request for a lumbar fusion and on-going TTD. There we successfully convinced the Arbitrator and the Commission to adopt the opinion of Dr. Pineda, the independent medical evaluator, over the treating physician.
In Dominique Kay v. Northern Illinois Medical Center and Centegra Health System the petitioner was alleging that Northern Illinois Medical Center was the employer and the only party entitled to protection under the Workers’ Compensation Act, alleging that Centegra Health System was liable for her injury under common law based on a negligence theory. She was also alleging that she was permanently and totally disabled as a result of her employment and entitled to $66,560.00 for 2-1/2 years in temporary total disability benefits and then $26,624.00 a year in permanent total disability benefits. At the time of the injuries, the petitioner was 37 years of age. The Arbitrator found that there was dual employment between Centegra Health System and Northern Illinois Medical Center resulting in each entity receiving the necessary protection under the Workers’ Compensation Act, negating a case in Circuit Court. The Arbitrator denied the 2-1/2 years of temporary total disability, awarding the petitioner 60% loss of use of a man for her multiple surgeries ($138,240.00) as opposed to the $66,560.00 in temporary total disability benefits and the $1,011,712.00 in permanent total disability benefits.
In George Buchanan v. Bridgestone the petitioner was claiming to be totally and permanently disabled and entitled to weekly benefits starting in August of 2003. At trial, the petitioner was seeking compensation for a fractured arm, a closed-head injury, psychological trauma and neck and back injuries as a source of his ongoing disability. The temporary total disability exposure was in excess of $120,000 and the unpaid medical bills amounted to $100,000. The demand before trial was $250,000.
The case was tried in November 2011 and on January 17, 2012, the arbitrator denied everything except the undisputed fractured arm and awarded the petitioner 30% loss of the arm. He denied all claims for lost time, unpaid medical, and permanency for the closed-head injury, psychological trauma and neck and back injuries. The Petitioner has taken an appeal.
In Marie Humes v. Sherman Hospital the petitioner was claiming that as a result of her accidental injuries, she was entitled to undergo a cervical fusion ordered by her treating physician, as well as receiving an award of temporary total disability benefits from May 25, 2011 through the date of hearing and on-going. On January 18, 2012, the Arbitrator adopted the opinion of our independent examining physician and found that the petitioner had reached maximum medical improvement and he denied the requested cervical fusion and temporary total disability benefits.
In Lisa Todd v. Sarah Bush Lincoln Health the Arbitrator issued a decision on February 29, 2012 denying the petitioner’s four claims for permanency relating to injuries she sustained to her knee, left thumb, left shoulder and back from four separate accidents.
In Nathan Simmons v. Bridgestone the petitioner was claiming that his knee injury and resulting surgery were causally connected to an accident when a part flew out of a machine and struck him in the knee. The evidence deposition of the treating physician was taken and we raised medical questions regarding the petitioner’s claimed injury. A videotape of the job was taken and shown to the arbitrator. It was our contention that it would have been impossible to have sustained the accident as alleged. On April 12, 2012 the arbitrator issued her decision and denied this claim in its entirety.
In Brett E Hill v. Tate & Lyle the Arbitrator awarded $97,938.43 in medical, $23,953.00 in TTD and $69,079.62 in permanency representing 30% loss of use of the right arm and 25% of the left arm. On review the Commission reversed the Arbitrator’s decision finding the petitioner failed to prove his condition of ill-being was causally related to his employment. On April 17, 2012 the Appellate Court affirmed the “no award” of the Commission.
June of 2012
In Larry Matson v. City of Waukegan the Arbitrator awarded the Petitioner $88,199.35 in medical expenses, $19,933.44 in temporary total disability benefits and $88,765.59 in permanency representing 30% of a person for a spinal fusion. In total the decision amounted to $196,898.29. We appealed, and in June of this year, the Commission reversed that decision and reduced the Arbitrator’s decision from $196,898.29 to $22,191.38.
In Frank Bird v. Eagle Wings, the Petitioner was seeking an order from the Arbitrator compelling the company to authorize a wrist fusion and to award 95 weeks of temporary total disability benefits. In June of this year, we received a favorable opinion where the Arbitrator found there was no causal relationship between the Petitioner’s undisputed accident and the need for a wrist fusion. He also denied the temporary total disability benefits.
In Ann Morgan v. Tate & Lyle the Arbitrator denied the Petitioner’s repetitive trauma carpal tunnel claim. On June 21, 2012 the Commission affirmed the Arbitrator’s denial finding that the petitioner failed to prove that the carpal tunnel syndrome was causally related to her employment.
In Courtney Carter v. Gottlieb Hospital we received a favorable decision on July 17, 2012, where the Petitioner was seeking 191 weeks of temporary total disability benefits and authorization for right knee surgery which they were trying to relate to an August 29, 2009 accident. On July 17, 2012, we received a favorable decision from the Arbitrator denying the Petitioner’s claim finding that she failed to prove that she sustained a compensable accident arising out of her employment.
In Mustafa Alassady v. Berner Foods the petitioner was alleging that he was injured the last day of his employment just prior to being terminated. This was a heavily disputed claim that boiled down to a factual contest. All of the medical histories that were given by the petitioner to the treating doctors were consistent with an injury at work. To counter that, we brought in four witnesses who testified credibly that the petitioner did not sustain an injury at work including various activities that the petitioner performed after the alleged injury which would have been inconsistent with the claimed injury. At issue was two years of TTD, authorization for a multi-level fusion and over $50,000 in medical bills that had already been incurred.
The arbitrator found the petitioner’s testimony lacked credibility, he believed the company witnesses, and denied all benefits. On August 6, 2012 the Workers Compensation Commission affirmed that denial.
In Michael Novak v. Lehigh Press, the Petitioner was seeking an order from the Commission ordering the company to pay for a partial knee replacement. The Arbitrator denied the Petitioner’s request and on August 28, 2012, we received a final decision from the Workers’ Compensation Commission finding no causal relationship between the Petitioner’s need for a knee replacement and the undisputed accident.
In Claude Gordon v. Bridgestone (repetitive trauma/carpal tunnel), the petitioner claimed that his repetitive activities at work resulted in developing carpal tunnel on March 9, 2010. We raised a statute of limitations defense pointing out that the petitioner had similar symptoms and a similar diagnosis in 2001. As a result, we argued that if the injury, in fact, occurred in 2001 it would be barred by the statute of limitations.
The petitioner claimed that he had continuing “repetitive traumas” which occurred up to the point that he had his surgery, thereby making his claim filed timely.
On August 21, 2012 the arbitrator denied the Petitioner’s entire claim. She disagreed with the Petitioner and agreed with the evidence that we had provided which demonstrated the petitioner’s knowledge of his condition and his understanding that the condition was related to work back in 2001. The arbitrator found that the injury occurred in 2001 and the claim should have been filed within three years thereafter.
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