Attorney Joe Miller Wins at Hearing, Proving Shoulder Injury Related to Original Claim
Richmond, VA, November, 2020. Win at Hearing of Denied Portion of Claim. We currently represent a 44-year-old truck driver who suffered multiple, severe injuries to his neck, shoulder, hands, and other body parts when he was hit on driver’s side of his rig causing the entire cab to flip on its side, essentially destroying the cab of the truck. He was airlifted to an emergency room, where he underwent treatment and was released. Although we were able to obtain an Award for him for lost time from work and several of his body parts, for some reason, the defendants denied that the claimant had suffered an injury to his left shoulder. The defendants employed an Independent Medical Examiner who gave an opinion that the shoulder issues were primarily pre-existing and that any aggravation of those injuries from the accident had resolved; however, the claimant’s treating physician came through and gave an opinion that they had not resolved, and in fact persisted, causing him to be unable to return to his work as a truck driver. At the end of the day, the opinions of the treating physician prevailed, and the Deputy Commissioner ruled in our favor, noting that employers “take their employees as they find them,” meaning that they remain responsible for aggravations of pre-existing conditions brought on by a work accident. Although the defendants appealed the ruling, they failed to properly perfect their appeal and the claimant is now under an Award for ongoing benefits and treatment which includes treatment for the shoulder as a result of our victory at Hearing. Once he attains maximum medical improvement, we will hopefully be able to explore a full and final settlement of his claim.