Long Beach Lawyers Discuss: Improving CA Workers’ Compensation System

Workers Comp Lawyers Understand Applicant Frustration:

As experienced Workers Compensation Lawyers who have represented applicants for over 4 decades, we understand that the the loss of a job due to a work related injury is much more than the loss of a paycheck. It is also the beginning of a lot of worrying and waiting: worrying about how you will support your family; and, waiting and waiting for your Workers Compensation to be approved.

We are often asked by our clients why the Workers Compensation System can be so difficult , and how it can be improved. This is a question we have given a lot of thought. Here are just a few ideas proposed by ourselves and other experts for improving the California Workers Compensation system.

Convert Workers Comp Cases from Paper to Electronic Lawyers Long Beach

One step that could be taken by the California Department of Industrial Services, Division of Workers’ Compensation would be transformation from the current primarily paper-based system to an electronically paperless platform.

It has been suggested by experts that this would accomplish two goals: faster case processing, and financial savings in both paper costs and labor needed for manual processing of forms.

Quicker Processing of Uncontested Workers Comp Claims Lawyers Long Beach

Many applicants and experts alike believe that greater efficiency and speed in processing lower-level uncontested claims is crucial to improving the current system.

Streamlining the system to “fast track” well documented injuries that clearly qualify for compensation would result in applicants obtaining benefits more quickly – and would free up other resource to process the more difficult cases.

Treating Physicians vs. IMR in Workmans Comp Cases Lawyers Long Beach

One large, recent change made to the California Workers’ Compensation bill was the establishment of an “Independent Medical Review” (IMR) process. Under this provision, when a disabled worker seeking treatment has their case “elevated”, a board of doctors reviews the case and makes the decision.

Advocates of the IMR process say it will result in a more timely resolution of disputes, while detractors suggest that returning to the treating physician decision making authority would make the process much more fair and also much faster.

Currently there is already a “back log” of cases in California waiting for IMR – so perhaps the reversing of the IMR process would enable applicants to get benefits faster.

Workplace Safety & Prevention for Workers Lawyers Long Beach

Ideally, workers would never be injured in the first place! That is why we – and other Workers Compensation Professionals – also advocate greater employer investment in workplace safety and prevention.

While employers are always quick to complain about the rising cost of Workers Comp Insurance – they neglect to recognize that if they reduced hazards and invested in greater prevention there would be fewer injured workers filing claims.

Additionally, until more employers incorporate wellness as part of their safety program, the future of workers’ compensation will be stretched with the health risk factors of the workforce.

We Are Long Beach Workers Compensation Lawyers for Applicants

There is still a great deal of uncertainty surrounding the recent changes to California’s Workers Compensation Laws (SB 863) and how the new laws will be interpreted. Because of this, it is extremely important for disabled workers to obtain an experienced lawyer to help them understand how the law applies to them.

If you are suffering from a work related injury or illness, call us. We will offer you a free consultation to discuss your Workers Compensation options with an experienced lawyer who can help you understand your rights and obtain the maximum compensation for which you qualify.