Court of Appeal Decision Affirms Right to Rebut Standard Rating
The California 1st District Court of Appeal finally issued the long-awaited decision in the Ogilvie case, confirming the right, in certain specific cases, to present evidence that an injured worker’s final permanent disability rating based on the American Medical Association (AMA) Guides and the formula created by the State’s Division of Workers’ Compensation is incorrect.
“The ability to present such evidence to the judge, which can affect the final rating of permanent disability, is another opportunity to counter the harsh effects of the 2004 Workers’ Compensation ‘reform’ legislation,” says Richard Felton, a partner in the law firm of Gordon, Edelstein, Krepack, Grant, Felton & Goldstein, LLP (GEK).
“If an injured worker receives a low, inaccurate final rating based on the AMA Guides, but the effects of the injury severely influence future earning capacity, is such a rating still correct as argued by the employer and the insurance community? This case confirms that, depending on the facts of the case, evidence may be presented to show the percentage of disability should be higher.
“An experienced, knowledgeable attorney knows when to raise this issue and how to prepare and present vocational evidence to ensure a fair settlement or that a judge issues an accurate rating.”
GEK attorneys are known for aggressively representing their clients to obtain the full range of benefits for injured workers, and for keeping updated on all pertinent legal theories that may affect their clients in this still evolving area of the law.
If you would like to talk to an attorney about your case, please contact us at 213-739-7000.