TIME OUT WHEN NFL MASCOT HURTS KNEE AND IS CARTED OFF FIELD: INJURED WORKER IN THE NEWS, #58

It is reported that Poe, the Baltimore Ravens’ mascot was carted off the field.  They injured occurred during a mascot verses youth football team half-time match.   The leg had to be stabilized.  nypost.com

This article will discuss the complexity of what appears to be a simple workers’ compensation injury.

Does the Mascot’s Occupation Matter?  What is Dual Occupation Rule? How Does This Apply?

In California Workers’ Compensation, an Injured Worker’s  Occupation can determine the permanent disability percentage.  A Worker’s “Occupational Group.”  Thus, choosing the correct “Occupational Group” is important.   There is a special rule that would apply in this fact pattern.  The Dual Occupational rule looks at the activity that the Injured Worker was engaged in during the time of the injury.  Thus, at the time of the accident, the Mascot was playing in a football game.  Thus, there is an argument to be made the Mascot should be rated as an athlete versus a mascot.

Is There An Earnings Issue In This Case?

Workers’ Compensation benefits are connected to a Worker’s Average Weekly Wage.  In this instance, it is likely that the team Mascot position was part time.  In that instance, an investigation should be made as to whether the Injured Worker has earnings from other employment.  The Average Weekly Rate is important as it is used to calculate disability rates for both total and permanent disability.

What if I Need Advice?

If you would like a free consultation regarding workers’ compensation, please contact the Law Offices of Edward J. Singer, a Professional Law Corporation. We have been helping people in Central and Southern California deal with their workers’ compensation cases for 27 years. Contact us today for more information.

ANGRY CUSTOMER + MACHETE + A DICK’S SPORTING GOODS STORE MANAGER = WORK INJURY: INJURED WORKER IN THE NEWS, #53

A Dick’s Sporting Goods Store had quite an incident.   A Customer, angry over the fact that he could not purchase a gun, reportedly took out a machete and slashed the Store Manager and 2 others.  The Store Manager is reported to have serious injuries to his torso, arms, and head.  It is reported that the Manager suffered severed tendons in the arms. TimesofIsrael.com

Does Workers’ Compensation Treat All Injured Body Parts Treated Equally?

No.  In California Workers’ Compensation, each body part is addressed separately.   Each body part, not including psych injuries, is to be assessed under the American Medical Association Guidelines 5th Edition.   A Whole Person Impairment is assigned to each body part.   This impairment is translated into a rating percentage.  The Worker’s Occupation is also used to adjust the rating percentage.  Per the Rating Schedule, After the rating is adjusted for diminished future earning capacity, it is then modified to take into account the requirements of the specific occupation that the employee was engaged in when injured.   SCHEDULE FOR RATING PERMANENT DISABILITIES 2005.  The adjustment is based upon who value the body part is to the occupation.  In other words, a job that requires lifting will get added value for a back.  With the Manager, their torso, arms, and head will be assigned distinct values.  With a Manager, the head may be rated higher both on a cosmetic level and on a cognitive level versus the torso and arms.  Should a psychiatric injury be pled, that rating percentage would go upwards as a Manager’s job requires a significant mental capacity.

What if I Need Advice?

If you would like a free consultation regarding workers’ compensation, please contact the Law Offices of Edward J. Singer, a Professional Law Corporation. We have been helping people in Central and Southern California deal with their workers’ compensation cases for 27 years. Contact us today for more information.

 

A DOLPHIN ATTACKS TRAINER: INJURED WORKER IN THE NEWS, #30

In a Miami Aquarium, a Dolphin, “Sundance,” attacked his trainer.  It was reported that the dolphin repeatedly struck the trainer and tried to pull  the trainer down into the water.  Apparently, the altercation may have been caused when the trainer had accidentally scratched the dolphin.  After the attack, the visibly shaken trainer was taken by ambulance to a local hospital. www.local10.com

This article will discuss the legal issues of this incident within the California Workers’ Compensation System.

If the Trainer Accidentally Scratched the Dolphin and This Caused the Dolphin to Attack Him, Does This Bar The Trainer From Pursuing A Workers’ Compensation Claim?  

No.  Workers’ Compensation is a “no fault” system.  Thus, an employee’s accidental contact causing an injury would not be a bar.

Does Applicant’s Animal Trainer Position Impact Their Compensation?

Yes.  Permanent Disability assessment includes an injured worker’s employment class.  This is called an Occupational Group Code.  A job’s physical arduousness can increase the permanent disability.  Per the Rating Manual, an Animal Trainer’s group number is 390.  Since Animal Trainer’s job can be quite physical, there is a likelihood that they will received a higher rating for certain body parts versus an injured worker with a less arduous job. For example, a secretary’s occupational adjustment would not be as good as an Animal Trainer.

What If I Need Advice?

If you would like a free consultation regarding workers’ compensation, please contact the Law Offices of Edward J. Singer, a Professional Law Corporation. We have been helping people in Central and Southern California deal with their workers’ compensation cases for 27 years. Contact us today for more information.

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