I am having the fun of trying to work my way through the bizarre world of workman's comp. If anybody ever tells you it's easy believe you me they are lying to ya. With workman's comp if you lie it's one thing you'll for sure get popped for but if your employer lies it is encouraged. They can appeal any good ruling at least 3 times bringing out all kinds of outlandish accusations and statements with you having no civil recourse for their actions against you. They can say whatever they want. It is my job to prove that they are wrong. How fair is that?
Hmmmm let me think of a few of the lies:
1. We laid her off and she has no rights because we did it for economics alone. Well while I am "laid off", why are the others that were supposedly lower than me in seniority are working 40 hours a week or more. Me NONE. That is not laid off for economics that is just plain vindictive.
2. We gave her a job with accomodations and she refused it. Their ideas of accomodations are that I work the floor on night shift every other weekend. My restrictions are no lifting, no pushing or pulling of a #300 med cart, no stooping, kneeling or squatting. Supposed to have a sedentary job. I don't know what you know about nursing homes but even on night shift there is no way that it is sedentary. Their expectaions are that a. I have the ONE aide I have each night to push my cart for me when they have 2 peoples work to do already. b. I'm to prepull my meds for my med pass. Well this is illegal and could cost me my license. c. If someone needs help I'm to call the aide. Well since there are only 3 aides in the building at night, my aide for at least half of the night is either on break or helping on the other ends. How am I to call them when someone has fallen and I'm the only one there or if they are standing in the middle of the hall about to fall and you can't lift them. c. If there is any lifting to do I am to use the ceiling lifts or get help. Well yes the ceiling lifts are great back savers you still have to get the sling under them and if they can't move on their own you have to do a lot of pushing, pulling and lifting to get the sling in place before they can be lifted. And again what help? c. As for the bottom drawer is where all liquids, countables, and narcotics are and I can't reach below my knees. Their answer to that is to sit in a chair and take it down the hall with me along with pushing the #300 med cart and use the chair to get into the bottom drawer. Well if you are reaching below your knees sitting and doing it is even more of a strain on the back than standing and doing it.
2. She was like this all this time and we've been working with her anyway but we can't afford to any longer. Well I worked 10 years (this time) for them 40 hours plus per week and functioned just fine with a few instances of being off ill. After all I am human the last time I looked.
3. She is just playing the doctors and us she never even got hurt. They demanded that I take a functional capacity exam because they said I was faking it all and "playing them" Well that functional capacity exam not only proved I wasn't faking but said that I was doing more than I was even capable of and therefore risking further more serious injury so that I could keep my job. What was their excuse then for taking away the job I could do and throwing me on the floor when they had the documentation of a functional capacity exam that they have chosen to totally ignore the results of that test and pretend it never was done because it doesn't agree with them. (by the way my desk job is being done by an LPN that has been licensed for only a year and that job is required by state regs to be done by an RN) My refusal was when they pulled me into the office and had my job description shoved in my face and asked if I could perform all of the duties in the description and me saying truthfully that I couldn't as if they didn't already know by my restrictions and the test. I NEVER refused anything!
These have all been said to the industrial compensation board about me and I'm the one that has to prove that they aren't true without any legal recourse of defamation, harrassment, or any other way of civil litigation possible.
I had a hearing on the 21st of August and won that hearing so got back pay for July 10 through that date and supposed get a check every 2 weeks for what they allow for full time. By that time I had a threat of foreclosure on my home. My utilities shut off and had absolutely no food in my house so had to applied for food stamps, and "welfare" . If you think that didn't stick in my craw you're wrong. I knew that there was a chance that they could appeal the hearing but didn't know that if this hearing would go against me I will have to pay all of that money back to the worker's comp by giving up whatever future worker's comp benefit I get if any and they will get 60% and I will get a whopping 40%. What I was making at 100% wasn't covering everything. So now I get to sit and wonder until after another hearing on the 23rd to see If I will have to pay what I got back. So what I have gotten at this point is all I am going to get until after that hearing and maybe forever.
Now mind you all of this is with a damned good lawyer that specializes in workman's comp. I can only imagine what it would be like on my own trying to navigate through this maze of legal bullshit. He gets a third of whatever I get but without him I don't think I would have gotten anything. In the mean time I have applied for disability from work but that is less than 1/2 of what I made so if you have any good positive thoughts, prayers, spells or whatever your belief, I would really appreciate them at this point. the idea of the food stamps and all that again is almost more than I can handle and have had almost as much as I can handle already.