Richmond, Va., October, 2013. Our client had been treating with a doctor for injuries to his right knee that he suffered on the job when he fell into a hole. He underwent two surgeries, but went back to work as a machine operator after each. He continued to have difficulties at work because of his knee injury, including issues with his knee ‘giving way.’ Despite this, his doctor came to the opinion in his records that the current knee problems were due to pre-existing problems and were not related to the injury on the job. Therefore, the workers comp carrier refused to pay for any more treatment of the knee.
We became involved in the claim and our client chose a new doctor who stated that the current problems were due, at least in part, to the injury on the job. That is all that is required under Virginia Law to make the claim compensable.
We went to a Hearing and won. We took the deposition of the original treating doctor who had said the injuries were unrelated to the work accident. We took the time to explain the law to the doctor. He then realized he had made a mistake in his notes and gave the opinion under oath that the current problems were due— at least in part— to the original work injury.
The Deputy Commissioner found that since the employer had wrongfully denied further treatment, they were required to pay for the new doctor chosen by our client, and further for all future treatment related to the knee injury.
The employer appealed that decision to the Full Commission and we won there as well. The Full Commission upheld the opinion of the Deputy Commissioner in our client’s favor.
We subsequently settled our client’s case with the employer and workers compensation insurance company for a substantial sum of money.