In represented cases in which a panel of qualified medical evaluators (QMEs) is required to resolve a disputed issue, Labor Code 4062.2(c) states, "Within 10 days of assignment of the panel by the administrative director, each party may strike one name from the panel." Pursuant to Messele v. Pitco Foods, Inc. (2011) 76 CCC 956 (appeals board en banc), it has been well recognized that the mailbox rule applies to that process. So, when a QME panel is served, a party generally is given 10 days from the assignment of it, plus five days for mail, to strike a name from the panel.
MICHAEL SULLIVAN & ASSOCIATES BLOG
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2023 marks the end of COVID-19 emergency regulations and the implementation of permanent COVID requirements. While several of the new 2023 laws relate in some way to COVID, businesses can expect a return to more non-COVID related requirements. Employers must implement wage transparency policies and implement an expansion of CFRA and sick leave policies by expanding the definition of family member to include a non-blood related individual. To avoid retaliation claims, employers must be aware of additional protected activities included those related to reproduction and fertility and employees’ right to leave the workplace during natural disasters and emergency conditions. Finally, bereavement leave has been expanded and, for larger employers, new privacy requirements must be implemented.
For injuries on or after Jan. 1, 2013, Labor Code 4660.1(c)(1) states that "the impairment ratings for sleep dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, or psychiatric disorder, or any combination thereof, arising out of a compensable physical injury shall not increase." LC 4660.1(c)(2)(A)(B), however, specifies two exceptions allowing an increased impairment rating for a psychiatric disorder. An employee may receive such a rating by proving that the injury resulted from either: (1) being a victim of a violent act or direct exposure to a significant violent act; or (2) a catastrophic injury. Moreover, the WCAB continues to hold that the permanent disability schedule under LC 4660.1 can be rebutted by vocational evidence.
Michael Sullivan & Associates is happy to announce the opening of our 10th office, located in Redding, CA. You can find our newest office in the heart of downtown Redding, at 1300 West Street, Suite 210, Redding. You can reach the new office by phone at (530) 670-5550.
Generally, the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board's jurisdiction to award new and further disability is limited to five years from the date of injury. Labor Code 5410 states, "Nothing in this chapter shall bar the right of any injured worker to institute proceedings for the collection of compensation within five years after the date of the injury upon the ground that the original injury has caused new and further disability." LC 5804 states, "No award of compensation shall be rescinded, altered, or amended after five years from the date of injury ..." unless there is a timely filed petition. The appeals board generally may not reserve jurisdiction to award additional disability more than five years from the date of injury. (Hartsuiker v. WCAB (1993) 12 Cal. App. 4th 209.)
Veterans Day is a special day to remember the courage and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform. Michael Sullivan & Associates is especially proud of our employees, such as Employment Attorney Greg Wilbur, who have served our nation with honor.
Prior to attending law school, Greg served in the Marine Corps as a commissioned officer from 2006 to 2010. Highlights of his service included working as an embedded combat advisor to the Iraqi Police in Anbar Province, commanding dozens of convoys throughout that country, and developing a comprehensive training plan to prepare his unit for its eventual deployment to Afghanistan. For his service, Greg was twice awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and was promoted to Captain in the reserves after leaving active duty.
A Rare Renaissance Man
by Diane Skouti
Inter Alia Magazine - Volume 33, Issue 3
San Joaquin College of Law
For most attorneys, free time is a scarce commodity given over only to family, favored activities, and rest. Because of their universal penchant to serve, many legal professionals serve on boards and volunteer, in addition to pursuing a few hobbies.
For Chris Matthes (Law '16) time doesn't seem to exist. A newly promoted Supervising Attorney at the Fresno office of Michael Sullivan & Associates, Chris is obviously devoted to his legal career. The firm specializes in workers' compensation law, but also handles employment law, general liability, and the like. In his new role, Chris oversees junior attorneys, along with his own case load of workers comp defense, and the niche area of defending insurance carriers and third-party administrators against audit. There are nearly 100 attorneys among the firm’s nine statewide offices, and, like the Rhino featured in the firm’s logo, they are aggressive and effective in their approach.
Generally, workers' compensation is the exclusive remedy for injuries occurring at the workplace. A worker normally must pursue claims for work-related injuries before the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB) rather than sue the employer in civil court.
Nevertheless, certain types of intentional conduct take the employer beyond the boundaries of the compensation bargain. In City of Moorpark v. Superior Court of Ventura County (Dillon) (1998) 18 Cal.4th 1143, the California Supreme Court held that discrimination falls outside of the compensation bargain. It concluded that Labor Code 132a does not provide the exclusive remedy for discrimination based on a work-related injury.