Questions Answered by Jerry Lutkenhaus

Q: Years ago, injured at work, had surgery, recovered and returned to work.

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on May 17, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If you have an award from the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission for lifetime medical coverage, you can obtain a copy of that award by contacting the Commission at 1-877-664-2566. They can look it up for you.
View Details »

Q: PT told my wife her severe vertigo is related to multiple concussions she received from students at school, which were

1 Answer | Asked in Education Law, Workers' Compensation and Employment Discrimination for Virginia on
Answered on May 16, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If she has a disability due to a work-related injury, she first needs to have notified her employer of the accident giving rise to this disability within thirty (30) days of the accident. Then, she needs to have filed a claim with the Virginia Workers' Compensation Commission for the accident within two (2) years of the date of the accident. You indicated these were multiple incidents over a period of time. Also, a physical therapist is not a doctor. Usually, a concussion is treated by a...
View Details »

Q: Is there a maximum number of workers' compensation claims a person can file in a given amount of time?

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on May 3, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
I know of no limit. However, why would you want to file more than one per Injury?
View Details »

Q: I was awarded benefits for a work injury in VA now the ins comp wants to settle but they say I have to resign; true?

2 Answers | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on May 3, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
The value of your claim is determined by “future” lost wages and “future” medical expenses. You say you are “healed” and I assume you are back at work. This may mean you have no “future” lost wages and no “future” medical expenses. If so, the insurer has no exposure to further expenses. There is one other possibility. Your leg can be rated for permanent loss and you can be paid for this. For example, the doctor could say you have lost 10% of your leg due to this injury. Your...
View Details »

Q: February 2016 I was hurt at work, my injury was herniated disc (L4,L5) I have had two lumber surgeries.

2 Answers | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Jan 31, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
You had a serious injury. You indicate you will have pain for the rest of your life. If you have an award, then you have lifetime medical coverage for this injury. You indicated you completed an FCE. This probably gave you permanent work restrictions. You are currently being job placed by the insurance company; however, you indicate you have found a job on your own and you wonder what impact this will have on a settlement.

The insurance company looks at exposure. What will it have to...

Q: If I'm required to hire an expert to ensure I secure workers' comp benefits, does my employer have to pay for their fees

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Jan 3, 2018
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
Unfortunately, the answer is no you cannot recover the costs of obtaining an expert to win your case. Of course, the employer and its insurer cannot recover the costs of their experts from you.

Q: What if we never hear from Social Security?

2 Answers | Asked in Social Security for Virginia on
Answered on Dec 22, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If you filed in August of 2017, then it usually takes Social Security at least 120 days to render its initial decision. Usually, it takes that long for Social Security to send for and receive your medical records. If your claim is denied, then you should contact a lawyer such as myself for legal representation. Contact Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 for the status of your case.

Q: Will I still receive a settlement from compensation for my back surgery after I return to work?

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for West Virginia on
Answered on Dec 18, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If your claim is in West Virginia, you would have to contact a West Virginia lawyer for legal advice. If you are able to return to work without "any" work restrictions even though you had a back fusion that would decrease the value of your settlement.

Q: Once a va workers commissioner rules in my favor do I get settlement?

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Dec 4, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
Not necessarily. The insurer can always continue to pay you weekly benefits. If you have been released to Light Duty Work, then the insurer can attempt to job place you. Finally, the insurer can always send you out for a new medical opinion. You need to contact an experienced workers compensation lawyer to evaluate your case.

Q: I got hurt at work and went to file a claim for workrs' comp. In the interim, I ended up getting convicted of another

2 Answers | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Nov 15, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
While you are in jail for fraud, you won’t be able to collect workers compensation payments. If you don’t go to jail, then you can collect workers compensation payments.

Q: Am i entitled to a settlement if I been out of work for four months from a lumbar sprain the Dr's release me today

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Nov 14, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If you have been released with no work restrictions and no future medical care anticipated, the insurer may conclude you are 100% recovered and thus the insurer faces no future liability. If so, the insurer has no reason to offer you any settlement since it faces no future exposure. However, just to close the books on your claim, the insurer could offer you a minor settlement but they are "not" required to do so.

Q: I've been collecting my deceased husband's SS since retiring, but I will get more when I turn 70, right?

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Virginia on
Answered on Nov 1, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
It is my understanding if you "delay" taking benefits until age 70 then you receive higher benefits. However, this does not appear to be your case since you did not "delay" taking benefits. You should of course check with your Social Security Office to make sure nothing higher is available. Perhaps, if you have not drawn under your own number, then your money under your own number will be higher than drawing under your husband's number.

Q: Won a work comp case, medical benifits awarded Dec 29,2016. Need surgery on fractured foot. They sent an ADR letter

1 Answer | Asked in Personal Injury and Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Oct 25, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
If medical benefits were awarded but this surgery was “not” awarded, then you may have to file a claim for this specific surgery with the report from the doctor saying this surgery is “necessitated” by your injury.

Q: I have been out of work for a year first doctor messed up broke heal bone have screws was put on permanent restriction

2 Answers | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Oct 17, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
You need to contact an experienced workers' compensation lawyer. As I see the big issue in your case is whether or not you will be able to obtain a new job that equals or exceeds your pre-injury job. Your chances of doing that will probably determine the value of the remainder of your claim. Another question will be whether or not you need pain management for the rest of your life.

Q: Do I need an attorney? Suffered TBI at work from stuck door hitting me in head, management knew about door problem.

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Oct 17, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
The medical care is supposed to be directed by your treating physician and not by the insurance company. You should consult an experienced workers compensation lawyer about this problem with the insurance company.

Q: How much can I get from a back injury at work through a settlement with works comp?

2 Answers | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Oct 7, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
You have a tough situation. You indicate you failed a drug test and your benefits were suspended. I assume the insurer is contending you failed to comply with medical care by taking illegal drugs. At the hearing the insurer will document this by providing the report from the Doctor. Unless the Doctor is willing to re-test you it may be difficult to "cure" this non-cooperation with medical care.Your benefits are "only" supposed to be suspended during the period of the refusal. One big issue is...

Q: I was awarded med benefits for my injury that happened at work i have been seeing the same physician that Initially

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Sep 29, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
This is the procedure. You have an accident. You report it to your employer. The employer reports it to is WC insurance carrier. Then, the insurance company is supposed to send you a panel of three (3) doctors to pick a doctor from. When you pick that doctor, that doctor becomes the "authorized" doctor. Sometimes it does not work that way. In your case, it appears you went to the ER and got treatment at the ER. If the surgery was done by the ER doctor, then you should be OK. You need to contact...

Q: i need help getting my ssi. can u help?

1 Answer | Asked in Social Security for Virginia on
Answered on Sep 26, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
Your application for SSI or welfare disability is dependent on your age, your past work, your education and skills, your impairments, and the medical care you receive. Generally, if you are under age 50, you have to show you cannot do "any" job in the economy. You have to show you cannot do any of the jobs you did in the last 15 years. You must show your skills and education do not allow you to other jobs. You must show you are under medical treatment for your ailments and that your doctor's...

Q: If I'm a building contractor that hires an electrician one time, are they considered "regularly employed"?

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation and Employment Law for Virginia on
Answered on Sep 22, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
You indicate you are a building contractor. You did not indicate how many employees you have. If you have two (2) or more employees regularly in service, then you need to provide workers' compensation coverage. If you sub out the electrical work, then the electrician is an independent contractor and should carry his own workers' compensation coverage. You should make sure the agreement is clear he is an independent contractor and not an employee (who is paid by the hour and supervised by you).

Q: Does Virginia require an examination by their drs to close a workers comp case.

1 Answer | Asked in Workers' Compensation for Virginia on
Answered on Sep 18, 2017
Jerry Lutkenhaus' answer
I am not sure it is usual. However, if they are offering you free examinations by a neurologist and a neuropsychologist, I would certainly attend these exams to make sure you don't have any further problems due to the accident. Your daughter can charge mileage to and from these exams at 55.5 cents per mile. She can decline but I would talk this over with an experienced workers compensation lawyer first before she did this.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.