Seminar to ‘Walk’ a Texas Workers’ Compensation Claim

October 11, 2007

The Insurance Council of Texas (ICT) will host seminars in Austin and Dallas in November to track and analyze actual workers’ compensation claims through the Texas system. The 2007 Workers’ Compensation Fall Seminar – The Life and Times of a Workers’ Compensation Claim will take place Nov. 1 at the Crown Plaza Suites in Dallas Park Central, and Nov. 13, at the Omni Austin Hotel at Southpark in Austin.

Veteran workers’ compensation attorneys, two workers’ compensation consultants and an actress will play key roles in telling the story of a claim and an injured employee as each navigate the complex Texas workers’ compensation system.

Each seminar will include a mock indemnity and a medical contested case hearing. Interaction in both hearings will include the seminar presenters and an actress – Elisabeth Anne Wenzel – who will play the injured employee.

“Many of the twists and turns included in the seminar claims scenarios have been taken from actual claims handled by the attorneys who have played a key role in developing the seminar,” said Steve Nichols, manager of workers’ compensation services at ICT.

Bob Graves, a veteran workers’ compensation attorney with the Austin-based law firm of Burns, Anderson, Jury & Brenner, will kick off the seminar (Act I) with an overview of the injury reporting and initial claims investigation requirements and process.

Act II will include a mock contested case hearing and provide an overview of the indemnity dispute resolution process.

In Act II, workers’ compensation attorney, Joe Anderson, a founding partner of Burns Anderson Jury & Brenner, LLP, will play the role of an insurance defense attorney defending an insurer’s claim dispute. Jane Stone, a senior partner with Stone Loughlin & Swanson L.L.P., will play the role of the contested case hearing officer.

Act III, which follows the lunch break, will focus on the interaction between a health care provider played by Julie Shank, R.N., president of JShank Consulting, and the injured employee. Shank will describe the role of certified health care networks and disability management play in the Texas system.

Act IV will focus on the role of designated doctors and required medical examinations in the Texas workers’ compensation system. The injured employee’s attorney, played by Stuart Colburn of Downs Stanford, P.C. and Trey Gillespie, an attorney with Zenith Insurance Company, will provide overviews of the impairment rating process.

In Act V will feature a mock medical benefits contested case hearing. Robert “Bobby” Stokes, an attorney with Flahive Ogden & Latson P.C., and Jane Stone of Stone Loughlin & Swanson L.L.P., will describe the medical dispute resolution process. Michael Reed of the Texas Medical Association will play the role of the physician whose medical treatment has been disputed by the insurer.

The Epilogue will feature a conversation between Shank and the injured employee who is preparing to return to work. Shank will discuss the role employers, employees and the insurer play in returning the injured employee back to work.

Mark Hanna, ICT’s manager of public affairs and membership, will serve as the narrator.

Additional information on the agenda and registration is available at:

Source: Insurance Council of Texas

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