In their second of several policy-oriented guest posts below, Gregory J. Hubachek and D. Kirkhoff Brainard discuss Louisiana’s relationship with the national conversation surrounding opioids and addiction and how workers’ comp plays into it.
New Office of Workers’ Compensation Administration (OWCA) Director and former Chief Workers’ Compensation Judge Sheral Kellar held her first Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council (WCAC) meeting yesterday at the LABI conference center in Baton Rouge. After introducing herself to the assembled stakeholders, Kellar addressed several pending administrative issues, including the Arrant v. Acree Supreme Court decision, the hiring process for a new Medical Director, and CLE credit for pro bono representation.
Gregory Hubachek, of Workers’ Compensation LLC, a law firm representing injured workers, has practiced in the field of workers’ compensation for over two decades and served on the Governor’s Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council since 2009, as well as providing educational presentations for a variety of organizations including LABI, the OWC, and the Workers’ Injury Law and Advocacy Group. In this guest post, Hubachek and D. Kirkhoff Brainard sound off on how Louisiana can remedy its current budget woes by enforcing existing employment laws, and why dedicating resources to the Louisiana Workforce Commission to that end is so vitally important.
Welcome to “Marginal Interests,” a series highlighting the varied reading habits of the local comp community. This month, we spoke to Matthew Monson, attorney with his own Monson Law Firm, based in Mandeville. Read on for his take on reading for expanded perspective.
David Langham is Deputy Chief Judge of Compensation Claims for the Florida Office of Judges of Compensation Claims and Division of Administrative Hearings. In a guest post below, Judge Langham reviews the complexities of the three workers’ comp cases currently pending before the Florida Supreme Court, all of which could have potentially huge consequences for the last twenty years of reform packages. He also authors the popular industry blog Florida Workers’ Comp Adjudication.
Louisiana Comp Blog hosted the third “Comp in Focus” luncheon yesterday at Ralph’s on the Park in New Orleans. “Comp in Focus” is held bimonthly and seeks to create a meaningful dialogue between a variety of stakeholders within Louisiana’s workers’ comp system by discussing the larger issues facing the comp community as a whole. The speaker for the January event at Ralph’s on the Park in New Orleans was Denis Juge, a prominent workers’ comp defense attorney with Juge, Napolitano, Guilbeau, Ruli & Frieman out of Metairie, the author of a treatise on Louisiana workers’ comp, and the co-author of the LABI Workers’ Compensation Desk Book. Read on for more info, plus photos of the event!
“Women in Comp,” Louisiana Comp Blog’s profile series highlighting local female executives in the workers’ comp sector, is back in the new year. The first featured leader of 2016 is Judge Diane Lundeen, a workers’ comp judge in OWC District 8, New Orleans. Read on to get Judge Lundeen’s perspective on her career, Louisiana’s workers’ comp system, and how professional women often represent, and thus can help, each other.
This week (November 2nd to the 6th) is National Kids’ Chance Awareness Week. Kids’ Chance is a scholarship program operating on a state by state level that provides funds for college or vocational school to the children of workers who were killed or rendered permanently and totally disabled in a workplace accident. Louisiana Comp Blog sat down with Michelle Sorrells, Co-Chair of Kids’ Chance through the Louisiana Bar Foundation, to discuss awareness activities and more details about the program.
At the October meeting of the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council yesterday, members addressed concerns about UR review, reimbursement for surgical implants, the pending status of a new OWC Medical Director, and the upcoming public hearing for the 200+ page update of the Medical Treatment Schedule.
This week, the Louisiana Supreme Court decided that it will not rule on the constitutionality of the 1009 process in the Barber case, due to a procedural issue with 19th JDC Judge Johnson’s initial decision. Read on for more details about how the case will proceed and how a range of local comp attorneys perceive the move.