Monday, October 13, 2014

Virginia Workers Compensation & the Treating Physician Rule

I recently had a case in which the treating orthopedist recommended bilateral knee replacements due to her work place accident.The insurer in this Virginia Workers Compensation case disputed the recommendation. The insurer obtained two defense medical examinations that said the knee replacements could be necessary but they were not do to the "accident" the claimant had suffered but rather the replacements were necessitated by arthritis.

In the initial hearing before the deputy commissioner we lost. However, we appealed to the the Full Commision (three Commissioners who handle appeals from deputy commissioner decisions). Citing Virginia's "treating physician rule" the three Commissioners reversed the deputy commissioner and ordered the operation. Commissioner Williams for the Full Commission said the treating doctor's opinion based on three years of treatment out-weighed the two defense medical examinations.

The insurer then appealed to the Virginia Court of Appeals but that court in August 2014 dismissed the appeal.

For more information check my website at Virginia Workers' Compensation Lawyer contact me (804) 358-4766 or (800) 256-8862.