There are 3 ways in which to resolve a Workers Compensation Case
1. Stipulation -
a. Both sides agree as to the level of permanent disability based upon the medical reports available.
b. Disability payments are bi-weekly till entire amount is paid in full, less 15% attorney fees
c. Future medical treatment is left open as to the injured body parts only.
d. Generally if you are still employed with the same employer, Stipulation is your only choice.
2. Compromise and Release (C and R)
a. A total settlement value of the case is negotiated by your attorney and the defense attorney. This settlement value is based upon the level of permanent disability as per the medical reports and an estimated value of future medical care. Payment is made in one lump sum to the injured worker, less any permanent disability advances ( monies paid during the period you were made permanent and stationary or after your 104 weeks of allotted TD runs out and you and the settlement payoff date) less 15% attorney fees.
b. This form of resolution will close the case forever. There will be no future medical care provided since you received compensation for this in your settlement.
c. The workers compensation judge needs to approve the settlement for adequacy and legality before it becomes final.
d. **Please note ... you will never receive enough money to adequately pay for an expensive surgery you may possibly need or want in the future. For example ... if you may possibly need a knee replacement surgery, the thought process the insurance adjusters use is something like this. If the Surgery and related costs is say $100,000 and there is only a 25% chance you will need the surgery you may be offered an additional $25,000 in your settlement for future medical care. Clearly there is never enough to ever pay for the surgery if you decide sometime in the future to have the surgery. My thinking is generally, if you know you are going to have the expensive surgery} sooner or later, then have it sooner and let the insurance company pay for it. Some clients know from the start they will never have the surgery and do not want to be operated upon ... take the money.
Medicare Set Aside Trusts
Many times the insurance company will require Medicare approval under certain circumstances. If your case is one of those ... a company paid by the defense will review the medical records on the case and estimate the future cost of medical care that will be required to be set aside in a trust before medicare will ever have to pay for your industrial injury. This proposal is than sent to an organization called C.M.S. which needs to approve the proposal before the case can be settled by Compromise and Release. The rationale for this is simply the Government does not want to be responsible for medical care which should have been provided by the workers compensation system.
If you desire to be the trustee and have control over this money which is supposed to be used by you to pay for future medical expenses, ONLY associated with your industrial injury, you will have certain reporting requirements and bookkeeping functions to fulfill government requirements.
If yours is a case requiring a medicare set-aside I will discuss this in greater detail with you personally.
a. When the insurance company will not make a reasonable settlement offer, we are left with only one alternative .. Trial. The thing to consider before this final option is what the result will be.
If we have favorable medical reports which have a rating for example of 30% Permanent Disability, and the insurance company has reports giving the injured worker only 10% permanent disability and the compromise they are offering is not acceptable to the injured worker or his attorney and refuse to accept that offer. Trial is Ordered, generally in less than 60 days.
b. The judge will hear the evidence submitted by both sides. The evidence is generally the medical reports and the testimony of the injured worker.
c. The judge will not split the difference between the reports like King Solomon splitting the baby in the famous biblical story. It will either be the defense rating at 10% or our rating at 30% ... period.
d. If you go to trial the award received is paid off over time like the stipulated settlement in number 1, and like the stipulated settlement in number 1, the future medical care for the accepted injured body parts ONLY is left open. The biggest problem with the concept of medical care being left open for life is that everything that your treating physician orders must be first approved by U.R. If Utilization Review (UR) denies the treatment your rights of appeal are quite limited and currently the appeal is made thru a process called IMR, Independent Medical Review, which currently is upholding UR denials at nearly 80% rate which means the injured worker does not get the treatment requested. In my opinion one of the most unfair systems ever devised for injured workers.
I can not make the choice for you. How to settle is your decision.
Do you want a lump sum single check and close the future medical care for an agreed amount, then C and R is your only choice
If your main concern is future medical care and you feel you will never again have insurance from any source to help with your medical care ... then a stipulated settlement is your choice.
If you and your attorney feel that the settlement offer is too low and you don't fear the risks of trial understanding you will not get a lump sum check, and future medical will be a bit of a hassle, then trial is your choice . ..
I work for you ... you need to tell me what you want to achieve.
Dr Schaffer is a competent and caring attorney who is your advocate and will do the best he can for every client
I was represented by JJ at Mr. Schaeffers office. They helped me every step of the way in my process of settling my work comp insurance claim. I always had someone available to answer my questions or make actions on my behalf. I would highly recommend the office, especially JJ I worked directly with her a lot and she informed me of all my decisions but didn’t force me to make one. I appreciate that and enjoyed working with her. I would definitely recommend this office if you have a work comp issue and are seeking proper representation.
Very wonderful people. Worked very hard for me. A big Thanks.
I have nothing but good things to say about my experience with the law offices of Dr. Peter Schaeffer. The service was always prompt, he and his associates provided answers to any questions I might have knowledgeably and with patience, and kept me updated with any changes. They won my suit and I was awarded an overall $100,000.00. I am more than satisfied with the service and the results. I highly recommend them, and have often referred others needing legal counsel.
Great communication and has the drive to get things done
I will definitely recommend this law office to my friends and family..
Sorry there was a problem with my finger Dr Shaffer is a wonderful attorney
Fantastic, knowledgeable as both a physician and an attorney. Entire office staff is also experienced in this particular field of law. They truly care about their client's and will be honest in what can and cannot be done for your case. Mr. Schaffer is a colorful attorney that has held many professions during his life therefore has probably more life experience he can draw from and utilize on your behalf.
If you need a workmans comp attorneys in the inland Empire contact the law offices of Dr Peter Schaeffer and Jennifer Bentley. They are professional and knowledgeable and honest I was very impressed with them and their staff.Jennfer Bentley is awesome and got me a settlement that I'm very happy and thankful for
Everyone who works there is very professional and kind and will answer any question you have. They're all very knowledgeable and will handle your case as if it's their own! They work extremely hard to get you the best settlement for your case. I'm extremely happy with everything they did for me and the amount I got from my case! I highly recommend the law offices of Dr. Peter M. Schaeffer!
Very nice staff. Very efficient.
I would recommend. Great experience
Will highly recommend, very professional and thank you for your services
I made an appointment with law Office of Peter Schaeffer, reason I needed a new attorney. He asked why! an I explained, I answered his tough questions which he needed to be sure I needed to change attorneys, Peter took my case. If you want to have your life back again, Peter is the Attorney Thank you Peter
I just received the best Christmas present ever!! Thank you so much Jennifer for settling my case. You rock girl!! I recommend this office for any workman's compensation case!! I'm so grateful!! Thank you! #5star*rating
Great Attorney. Gets you to the best doctor's to guarantee you are receiving the best treatments. Awesome staff who are there to answer any and all questions. Settles your case as quickly and fairly as possible.
One of the most trusted Lawyers here in my area. He does the job done, he's very vivid about the details and explains its frequently to us so we wouldnt be confuse when we are at court. Thank you for the help. Will surely call you again.
Attorney Schaeffer made it easier for me to understand what I am into. Like the things that I should brace in the upcoming trials. He informed me on a lot of things, good thing he has a good manner, I understand it all because he has great skills on it. Will recommend this attorney.
Dr. Peter Schaeffer has proven to be my best choice as a workers compensation attorney. I researched my options, and I kept coming back to him. As a result, he has proven his excellence in many ways that are important to me. He is well-spoken, well-informed about California’s Workers Compensation Laws, and his passion for his clientele’s best interests. My case was finished in only one year and nine months. Within that time, because of Dr. Schaeffer, I received disability benefits and the best medical services that are available in the Coachella Valley for my types of injuries to the spine and shoulders. My case was a particularly difficult one because of my status as an adjunct professor. Dr. Schaeffer didn’t let that get in his way because he knew that California Workers Comp laws apply to everyone who is legally employed by a business or organization. One thing that I truly appreciated about him is that he kept me informed throughout the entire process. If I had questions, all I had to do is email him, and he would answer my questions in a timely fashion. He’s honest, and he follows the law to the dime. I was particularly impressed by his oratory skills in front of the judge during our expedited trials. He was polite, ethical, well-spoken, honest, and yet, he was assertive. His team is equally as impressive as Dr. Schaeffer; they truly represent his compassion and professionalism. If you want a workers’ comp attorney that truly fights for your rights, I highly recommend Dr. Schaeffer; he is the attorney for you. He cares, and he will get you what you are entitled to in a timely fashion.
I knew Dr Peter was the man for the job from the moment I met him! During this whole process, he has gone above and beyond the call of duty to help me. I appreciate him so much. God is great and Dr Peter is running a close second!! He is efficient, thorough and an awesome communicator! Emails are answered quickly by him and his staff. I can't say enough good things about this kind-hearted fellow!
Pete Schaeffer is an amazing attorney. I had a violent workplace injury that quickly became one of the worst experiences of my life. Peter and his team were amazing - They responded quickly to my questions, kept me in the loop, and worried about all the details for me. I was sent to caring, competent doctors and could focus on recovery instead of my case. And yes, he WON MY CASE! I cannot recommend this office highly enough.
Do yourself a favor and have this guy defend you. He is a champ and is really a master when it comes employment law. I learned a lot, worth every penny.
Mr Peter M Schaeffer What a great team at there law office They take your case personal. they fight for you and they go above and beyond the norm I would refer this law office to anyone looking for a great Attorney and staff, Thank you Thomas S
Personal and honest, Helps you through the process. "Very pleased with his staff and would recommend to all"
In Your Best Interest
When it comes to the legal experience, you couldn't ask for better than Peter Schaeffer. He not only handled my workman's comp case with great proficiency, he kept me informed and was quick to answer any questions that came up for me. Peter was always dependable, responsive, and, even more important, knowledgeable when it came to my case. I have referred others to him with the same results. I trust his competence to the point that I confer with him over legal situations that would not be cases he handles, yet he always takes the time to address my concerns and will refer me to reliable other sources for help. You can trust Peter to give you the truth. He doesn't paint unrealistic pictures of case possibilities, rather, he provides you with the practical, accurate potentiality of your personal situation and case. His medical background allows him to be more effective in his case presentation, not to mention a valuable source of information. All this said, Peter just seems to get it right, and I appreciate that.
The Best Workers Comp Attorney for Adjunct Professors
If you are an adjunct professor who has been injured on the job, look out for a complicated case because there are loopholes that colleges can utilize to deny a claim. I was seriously injured on the job and my case became very complicated because of my adjunct classification. I needed a seasoned attorney with high marks on my side. That's when I found Dr. Peter Schaeffer. Though he had not dealt with a situation like mine before, he pursued my case anyway, and so far, even though my case has not come to a complete close yet, Dr. Schaeffer has vigilantly fought for my rights. He was constantly presented with curve balls and untrue accusations about me, but he seemed to know how to side-step all of that and get matters taken care of. My case has enlightened Dr. Schaeffer about the unusual adjunct situation, but that didn't stop him. He is a go getter and he will fight for you as long as you are honest with him about your case. I'm glad I found him because we need more attorneys who can help adjunct professors who are injured on the job. Dr. Schaeffer is the guy for us. I'm very happy to have hired Dr. Schaeffer as my workers comp attorney. I'm certain that he will continue to fight for me until the end. If it wasn't for him, I would have been in a much worse situation. Thank you, Dr. Schaeffer. You are the best in the West!
Legal Services That Come Highly Recommended-
The Law Offices of Dr. Peter M. Schaeffer handled My case and my Wife's case with the up most professionalism and at the same time made us feel like we were long time friends. Issues were explained in a manner that were easy to understand. Time sensitive matters were handled quickly and effectively. Medical issues expedited as a number one priority. Our cases were settled quickly, effectively, and favorably in our best interest. " I Would And Do Highly Recommend" - Peter and his Associates- at The Law Offices of Dr. Peter M. Schaeffer- My Wife and I are truly satisfied customers...... Thanks Peter-
Thank you Dr. Peter M. Shaeffer for taking my case.I'm very happy with your service and for making me feel comfortable with my first deposition. You guys are awesome.I will highly recommend you. 😊
The shark you want on your side!
Dr. Peter M. Schaeffer was my attorney many years ago. He did an outstanding job on my workers compensation case. He went out of his way to get me the treatment I needed as well as the money I deserved. I have referred my family and friends to him, and they have also been very satisfied with the outcome of their case. His staff is knowledgeable, kind and always willing to help. Dr. Schaeffer has not only been my attorney but also my friend. I highly recommend him to anyone looking for a great workers compensation attorney.
Quick response, great attitude and welcoming atmosphere.
I have worked with Dr. Peter Schaeffer for many years now. This came after changing attorneys early into my case due to what seemed like lack of interest in assisting me and bad personality from my previous attorney and staff. From the second I had received a reply from Dr. Peter Schaeffer I felt like things were going to to less confusing and overall that my best interest was in mind. He or someone from the office always returned my emails promptly and he is always straight to the point. There was never an experience from he or his staff that was not pleasant. I highly recommend to at least meet with Dr. Peter Schaeffer and decide for yourself but for me I'm happy I decided to use him. If you are looking for a straight forward attorney that not only looks out for you but treats you like a person in the process he is the guy.
Exceptional and Personable Service
Mr Schaeffer is an Amazing lawyer, he "really" does fight for you! He and/or his staff would return my call or emails always, mostly within hours answering my questions and concerns. Mr. Schaeffer's has a professional straight forward approach of expressing his knowledge for you to understand. His compassion for my well being, completing a 6 year case with a very nice outcome. Thank you Mr. Schaeffer and your incredable staff for taking care of my well being! Very Grateful
PETER was great he and his team helped me get my workers comp claim accepted if you need help peter is the man!
Just put yourself in his Hands...you will not regret it for even one minute.
First Class Attorney
Dr. Schaffer I have to say I did Not retain an Attorney at first because I was just not sure it was the right thing to do. However, due to been left with a denied surgery, the day prior to the scheduled surgery, I was left with no choice! Dr. Schaefer went way above and beyond his call of duty and I can truly say, he is the Best you will ever find. I have been in Senior Mgmt, in Health Care for almost 30 years and deal th with all type of Professionals in my career, good and not so good. Dr. Schafer is the best you will ever find in his Profession, he truly goes above and beyond his call of duty. I believe he truly cares for his clients and I would recommend him to my closets friend and family member. He is the BEST, you will find, to get the job done in a professional and ethical manner. I am so glad I retained him, as I really don't know how I could have got through it without him. Geraldine
Five stars are just not enough to rate the Law Offices of Dr. Peter M. Schaeffer ..... After searching high and low for a competent, qualified, caring attorney to take on my somewhat complex case I was so relieved to hear Dr. Schaeffer's voice on my phone one Sunday morning. He introduced himself as my "new kick-ass lawyer," responding to a late-night online form I had filled out, teary-eyed, the night before. First, he's always available (well, not exactly, since he is in court and such but someone always answers the phone and I don't mean a machine or a service) (but very often it IS him answering the office phone) and he always knows who you are, what you are being treated for, who your doc is, and where your case stands at the moment. His staff cares about you and always has (or quickly gets) the answers you need. Dr. Schaeffer is knowledgeable about the law and how it works to help injured employees -- he will not quit, give up, lose interest, or ditch you when the going gets tough. He's my guy. He should be your guy, too.
Professional,, courteous, respectful, knowledgeable, exceeded expectations, informed staff, outstanding medical considerations regarding my conditions, best lawyer for Worker's Comp. Cases
Thanks to Dr. Peter Schaeffer, I was able to obtain the best medical care with his follow up conversations and his perseverance in dealing with my WC Insurance Company on my behalf. Without Dr. Schaeffer, I would not have been able to achieve any kind of quality of life and reasonable settlement. Thank you, Dr. Schaeffer, and all of your very qualified and informed staff for all the kindness and support during this most difficult period time of my life. If anyone needs a great lawyer fighting on your behalf, Dr. Peter Schaeffer is the best Worker's Comp Attorney in the business and will provide you with outstanding, personal service while fighting to get you all the help and care during your time in need. Thank you to Dr. Peter Schaeffer and to all your great staff for your outstanding work. With gratitude and great respect, Barry S. Rulnick
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