» Washington Workers' Compensation

New workers' comp protections for health care and frontline workers during a pandemic

Two bills signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee will grant presumptive workers’ compensation protections to health care and frontline workers during a public health emergency, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill (ESSB) 5115… Read More
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Injured Workers Have the Right to Bring an Observer to IME

L&I recently released its policy on a worker’s right to bring an observer to an IME. This is a good policy for injured workers. It provides: You can bring an adult friend or family member as an observer to a non-mental health IME. You cannot br… Read More
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Should I file a new claim or reopen an old claim?

I hurt my back again (or neck, or knee, or….). Should I reopen my old claim or file a new one? Always do both. File a reopening application for an old claim if the medical condition was previously covered by an old claim, and file a new claim,… Read More
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Make Sure Your Time Loss Wage Order is Correct

If I were to list the top 10 mistakes made on workers’ compensation cases in Washington State, near the top would be a worker failing to appeal a wage order that sets his or her monthly wages too low. A worker’s time loss compensation is based on… Read More
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Is there a settlement? Permanent Partial Disability

Injured workers often ask if they will receive a settlement at the end of their worker’s compensation case. The answer is –it depends. If there is objective evidence that your injury will not totally heal, then you should receive a permanent part… Read More
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New L&I Pilot Program: Acupuncture for Treatment of Low Back Pain

The Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) recently announced a 2-year pilot program to study the use of acupuncture to treat low back pain. It will begin October 1, 2017. Apart from this program, L&I does not cover the cost of acupuncture… Read More
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If you are getting worker’s compensation time loss under your Washington State Department of Labor and Industries claim, and you also start to get federal Social Security Disability benefits, or Social Security Retirement benefits, you probably wil… Read More
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I’VE BEEN INJURED. WHAT SHOULD I DO FIRST? Taking Photos After an Accident Can Help Your Case

You’ve been injured in either a workplace accident or personal injury accident (motor vehicle accident, slip and fall, etc.). The first thing you should do is seek whatever immediate medical attention you need. The next thing you should do is take… Read More
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When do I get a cost of living adjustment (COLA) from L&I on my workers’ compensation time loss or pension payments?

It’s July! Time for a COLA? When do I get a cost of living adjustment (COLA) from L&I on my workers’ compensation time loss or pension payments? For most workers – those who are not also receiving Social Security Disability or Retirement be… Read More
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Work injury "lights up" preexisting arthritis or other degenerative condition -- Is it covered?

It’s a common situation, especially among middle-aged workers. You have preexisting arthritis in your knee, back, shoulder, neck or other joint but no symptoms from it. The arthritis is there but doesn’t really bother you and doesn’t keep you f… Read More
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