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Workers' Compensation Archives

Update: Temporary Total Disability and WV Workers' Compensation Overpayment

West Virginia workers' compensation news continues in June 2018. An announcement by the West Virginia Offices of the Insurance Commissioner and an opinion handed down by the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals have employers paying attention. First, the Insurance Commission has released the Workers' Compensation Benefit Rates for the 2019 fiscal year. And second, the appellate court handed down its opinion in Reed v. Exel Logistics, Inc., creating questions about how to recover a WV workers' compensation overpayment.

WV Workers' Compensation Statute of Limitations Addressed by Supreme Court

On May 17, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals issued a decision applying the WV workers' compensation statute of limitations to bar an untimely. The court's decision has broad implications for workers and employers across West Virginia. While it gives employers solace in that it is an employee's responsibility to initiate the claim process by filing a timely WC-1 form, it also reminds employers that a worker's reliance on conduct by the employer or a claim administrator regarding the filing of a claim may prevent the employer from relying on the statute of limitation to deny an untimely filed claim.

WV Workers' Compensation Meal Reimbursement Addressed by Supreme Court

On April 11, 2018, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals issued its opinion in an appeal of a Board of Review decision denying a WV workers' compensation meal reimbursement claim. The court determined that West Virginia workers' compensation law allows reimbursement for meal expenses during travel for an independent medical exam (IME) located 100 miles away from the claimant's home. The court's decision has broad implications for workers and employers across West Virginia.

Arch Coal, Inc. v. Lemon: When Job Activity Worsens a Noncompensable Injury

In a very rare WV workers' compensation rehearing, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has reversed its earlier decision denying a workers' compensation claim for a secondary injury. In the first opinion, the court determined that the injury was not compensable because it was not work-related. On rehearing, the court withdrew its earlier decision, finding it was based on an inappropriate re-weighing of the facts. The court affirmed the determination by the West Virginia Workers' Compensation Board of Review, which had concluded that when job activity worsens a noncompensable injury, the resulting new injury is compensable.

WV Workers' Compensation Board of Review

Law in the area of workers' compensation differs from state to state, so when you're defending workers' compensation claims, it's critical to work with an attorney who knows your state system through and through. West Virginia (WV) uses a three-tiered system to adjudicate workers' compensation claims, starting with the Office of Judges (OOJ) and ending at the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia. The intermediate tier is known as the WV Workers' Compensation Board of Review (BOR). This blog will detail the function of the BOR and how it affects employers in the Mountain State.

PROTECT YOUR BUSINESS AGAINST WORKERS' COMPENSATION FRAUD IN WV

For many injured employees in West Virginia (WV), workers' compensation insurance provides a way for them to recover successfully from a workplace accident without too much harm on their finances. However, some employees are committing workers' compensation fraud in WV and end up significantly harming the businesses for which they work. In fact, an estimated 10 percent of insurance claims are suspected to be fraudulent, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB). Thus, as a business owner, it is imperative that you know the warning signs of workers' compensation abuse in WV and consult an attorney regarding suspected fraudulent activities to protect your business from employees who might be taking advantage of the system.

The Potential Effect of an Intermediate Appellate Court on WV Workers' Compensation

A potential legal change that is often brought up in the West Virginia (WV) Legislature is the creation of an intermediate appellate court in the Mountain State. Experienced WV workers' compensation attorneys recognize that such a change could substantially impact workers' compensation claims. This blog considers the potential effect of an intermediate appellate court on WV workers' compensation.

Claimant Attorney Fees in WV Workers' Compensation Cases: Who Foots the Bill?

A common question our workers compensation unit receives relates to the payment of workers' compensation claimant attorney fees by claims administrators. With the media reporting daily about excessive attorney fee awards in other areas, concern over this issue is understandable. However, in the context of West Virginia (WV) workers' compensation, the claims administrator rarely has to pay a claimant's attorney fees.

Whole Body Medical Impairment Ratings in WV: A New Rule

Employers and insurers should take note of a West Virginia Supreme Court decision involving permanent total disability thresholds. In March 2017, the Court issued its decision in Cooper v. Appalachian Power Company, determining that the Rule 20 spine impairment tables must be used when calculating whole body medical impairment ratings in WV.

WV Workers' Compensation Meal Reimbursement

In West Virginia (WV) and many other states, workers' compensation claimants are entitled to travel reimbursement for all medical appointments related to their claims, including both independent medical evaluations (IMEs) and all treatment appointments. What is included in "travel reimbursement"? More specifically, what is an employer legally required to do when faced with a request for WV workers' compensation meal reimbursement?
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