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Get Help From our Michigan Workers’ Comp Lawyers Today
You’re not alone. Our Michigan workers’ comp lawyers have been called the best in the state, and we pride ourselves on providing you with care, trust, and responsiveness.

Changes to workers’ compensation show why elections are important.

The AFL-CIO  recently posted 5 Reasons Why Rick Snyder Is One of the Worst Candidates for Working Families in the 2014 Elections. Reason No. 2 includes cutting workers’ compensation.

We are glad this issue is finally getting some attention. Here are some ways that workers’ compensation has changed under Rick Snyder.

Introduction of “phantom wages”

Rick Snyder signed House Bill 5002 on December 19, 2011. This legislation brought major changes to workers’ compensation. The most controversial involved the calculation of wage loss benefits. Insurance companies can now use “phantom wages” to say a person is only partially disabled. It does not matter whether the disabled employee has actually found a new job. The burden is on the individual to file a workers’ compensation case and prove entitlement to full benefits.

Try supporting your family on just 60% of gross pay (80% after-tax average weekly wage). Now imagine what would happen if that amount was cut in half – because the insurance company says you can work somewhere else. It’s not a fair system and Michigan families are suffering.

Limiting your choice of doctor

House Bill 5002 also lengthens the amount of time that employers and insurance company select medical providers. A person must now wait 28 days to get a second opinion or choose his or her  own doctor. People are forced to get medical treatment at industrial clinics and are typically under diagnosed.

Tougher burden of proof

House Bill 5002 codified several controversial Supreme Court decisions regarding the burden of proof. Insurance companies can easily dispute medical treatment for anyone with a preexisting condition. Considering that most people have some degenerative arthritis, this is a major problem. The burden of proof has become so extreme that many people have no remedy at all.

More employer abuse

Another change allows insurance companies to stop payment if a person is terminated for “fault.” This includes violating a company rule or policy. The language is extremely vague and ripe for employer abuse.

We had a client who was fired for getting his hand caught in a machine. The employer said his actions were deemed negligent and benefits were stopped. This is absurd considering workers’ compensation is supposed to be a no-fault system.

More politics

House Bill 5002 abolished the Qualifications Advisory Committee (QAC) and removed term limits for magistrates. Michigan workers’ compensation has once again become a political football.

Special interests groups have spent big money trying to change the system for their benefit. Our elected officials need to remember that workers’ compensation was enacted as remedial social legislation. It is supposed to err on the side of approving not denying benefits. This is the grand bargain that was established when employees gave up their right to a civil trial.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.

Related information:

Why We Support Change In Lansing

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Ken Zirkel.

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Author Bio Jeffrey Kaufman

Author
Jeffrey E. Kaufman
Michigan Workers Comp Attorney

Jeffrey E. Kaufman has extensive experience in workers compensation cases and has recovered millions of dollars in benefits for his clients. He believes all injured workers deserve to be on equal footing with insurance companies and employers, and fights tenaciously so their rights are secured and protected.


“Jeff also helped me with getting my Blue Cross bills paid. I would absolutely recommend him and the whole firm. Jeff and the firm did everything they were supposed to do for me and my case.”
Ricardo Perfetto

Hundreds of 5-Star Reviews

Related Blog Posts

Get Help From our Michigan Workers’ Comp Lawyers Today

You’re not alone. Our Michigan workers’ comp lawyers have been called the best in the state, and our clients love how they’re treated with care, respect, and responsiveness. We will give you the time you need, we will explain your legal rights, and we will always treat you with respect.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Injured? It’s Time to Get Some Answers

Don’t let the insurance adjuster push you around. Request your free consultation today.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.