Q: My injury & treatment was in N.Ca & Ins.co Is requesting QME,but I'm moving to S.Ca Can I retain WC lawyer in S.Ca?
A: Absolutely! You should find a competent workers comp attorney who will fight for your rights. Don't agree or sign anything until you hire a workers comp attorney. As a prior claims adjuster and insurance attorney with 30 years of experience, i can say that you are way better off getting a workers compensation attorney to represent your legal rights. Do this right away and make sure you deal directly and speak to the attorney, not a secretary or paralegal.
A: Of course, you can hire any attorney you wish, any where. But that is the wrong question. When the adjuster requests the list of three Qualified Medical Evaluators, these three will be within 75 miles of your address on the date the adjuster mailed in the request form. YOU WILL NEED TO GET A NEW PANEL OF DOCTORS, not a new attorney. You do not want to see a QME in Sacramento and then hire an attorney in Los Angeles...if the attorney needs to ask questions of the QME under oath, he will lose money going back and forth to sacramento for that QME. YOU NEED TO TELL THE ADJUSTER TO GET A PANEL OF DOCTORS NEAR WHERE YOU ARE LOCATED NOW.
A: Yes, but venue of your case is determined by:
1) County of residence of employee (Labor Code section 5501.5(a)(1) or (d).)
2) County where injury occurred (Labor Code section 5501.5(a)(2) or (d).)
3) County of principal place of business of employee’s attorney (Labor Code section 5501.5(a)(3) or (d).)
The insurance company may try to argue that your case needs to be heard in Northern California. Ultimately, a judge may need to decide the correct venue. I would recommend getting a local attorney within your proper venue. The first step is to contact an attorney.
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