Alabama Litigation Review

Alabama Litigation Review

Insights & Commentary on Developments in Alabama Litigation

Tag Archives: disability

Work Comp in Alabama: The Vocational Rehabilitation Myth

Posted in Workers' Compensation
Our workers’ compensation system was intended to help restore injured workers — to truly restore injured workers instead of shuffling them through the system. Yet, it has evolved into something far different. Many injured employees and their families suffer as a result. One area of failure is “vocational rehabilitation.” What does “vocational rehabilitation” even mean… Continue Reading

How Lawyers Ruined The Grand Bargain

Posted in Workers' Compensation
I recently finished a workers’ compensation trial in a small north Alabama county. The trial took just one day. It was a straightforward case. The issue was simple — how disabled was my client. In my law practice, I have workers’ compensation trials frequently. If the case was so simple, why did the defense firm… Continue Reading

Workplace Safety — Is It A Priority?

Posted in Workers' Compensation
A couple years ago, the Discovery Channel’s Mike Rowe set off a firestorm of commentary on the role of safety in the workplace. Rowe stars in the Discovery Channel show Dirty Jobs. Following one episode a viewer called him out for not wearing proper safety gear. How did Rowe respond? Rowe called the “Safety First”… Continue Reading

Workers’ Compensation Opt Out Systems — A Return To The Jungle

Posted in Workers' Compensation
Our current workers’ compensation system is unfair and provides inadequate benefits to injured workers. Yet, it’s much better than the newest proposal pushed by corporate lobbyists – an opt out system. Workers’ compensation protections are under constant threat from corporate lobbyists. One new threat is the opt out system enacted in Texas and Oklahoma. In… Continue Reading

The Forgotten Bargain That Was Our Workers’ Compensation System

Posted in Workers' Compensation
A few years ago, The Center for Justice & Democracy (CJ&D) published a post titled Snapshot of Justice: The Failure of Workers’ Compensation. The post begins by stating — When a worker is hurt, workers’ compensation is the exclusive remedy against an employer. This is an important opening statement. When workers’ compensation systems were first… Continue Reading

How Much Is An Arm Worth In Alabama? Not Much.

Posted in Workers' Compensation
ProPublica recently published an in-depth series detailing the demise of workers’ compensation benefits in many states. Journalist Michael Grabell did an excellent job researching the changing issues faced by injured workers and their families. Grabell’s articles relate stories like those I hear daily from injured workers in Alabama. If you want to understand the terrible… Continue Reading

Court Secrecy Harms The Public

Posted in Business Litigation, Defective Products, Personal Injury, Uncategorized
It’s been almost two months since my last post. Although not writing here, I have been busy writing – including a number of briefs in an ongoing products’ liability case and a separate case involving a public contract in Alabama. Both cases share a common (and troubling) issue. Both involve serious public issues shrouded in… Continue Reading

Failed FDA Process Opens Door To Dangerous Medical Devices

Posted in Defective Products, Personal Injury
Power morcellators. Transvaginal mesh. Both are examples of the FDA’s faulty 510(k) process. I’ve written several times about transvaginal mesh – products that have caused tremendous personal injury to women in Alabama and throughout the United States. Last week, I sat through the deposition of our expert witness in one mesh case. This medical specialist… Continue Reading

Workers’ Compensation And The Alabama Pain Management Act

Posted in Workers' Compensation
I often enjoy reading posts from the Alabama Workers Comp Blawg. While good attorneys, their approach is only from the defense side. That is quite different from my practice handling plaintiffs’ personal injury and workers’ compensation cases. So, while informative, I often disagree with their position. Recently, these defense attorneys wrote about the new Alabama… Continue Reading

Workers’ Compensation Settlements And The Closure Of Future Medicals

Posted in Workers' Compensation
In Alabama (and most other states), a primary goal of workers’ compensation is to provide injured employees with needed medical care. The first goal, when possible, is to treat and rehabilitate the injured person so that he or she may return to gainful employment. By law, employers must have coverage which provides needed workers’ compensation… Continue Reading

The Workers’ Compensation System And Its Impact On Injured Workers

Posted in Workers' Compensation
Each year, our workers’ compensation system in Alabama faces new threats from the insurance industry. In some states, like Texas, the system has been dramatically altered leaving many injured workers unable to recover and return to gainful employment. In Alabama, injured workers with a partial disability that impacts their ability to work are often compensated… Continue Reading

Mesh: Concerns and Questions

Posted in Defective Products
Transvaginal mesh and its complications made headlines this week as a jury reached a $3.35 million compensatory damages verdict in a New Jersey Court, with punitive damages to follow. This bold action ignites concern and questions for thousands of other women implanted with the same device. What is transvaginal mesh? Transvaginal mesh is a medical… Continue Reading

Current Issues in Workers’ Compensation Discussed at Seminar

Posted in Personal Injury, Workers' Compensation
Earlier this month, Cumberland Law School sponsored its 26th Annual Workers’ Compensation Seminar. The speakers at this excellent program included a Judge on The Alabama Court of Civil Appeals and a well-known orthopedic surgeon. One of the afternoon sessions included a panel of four attorneys answering questions from the audience related to workers’ compensation in… Continue Reading

Current Efforts To Change Alabama’s Workers’ Compensation Laws Would Severely Harm the Families of Disabled Workers

Posted in Personal Injury, Workers' Compensation
It has been over 25 years since the Alabama Legislature last increased the maximum weekly benefit payable under Alabama’s Workers’ Compensation Act to a worker with a partial disability. At that time, the weekly maximum allowed an injured worker’s family to survive slightly above the poverty level.  Fast forward 25 years and the same maximum… Continue Reading

Having Trouble With Your Workers’ Compensation Claim? You Are Not Alone!

Posted in Workers' Compensation
While sitting in court on a recent workers’ compensation case, I started to think about all the reasons someone calls an attorney after suffering a significant work-related injury.  For me, former clients are often the best source of referrals.  However, I’m not talking about why the caller chose a particular attorney.  Set aside referrals and… Continue Reading