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10th Annual Tennessee Workers' Comp Conference

10th Annual Tennessee Workers' Comp Conference - Materials Only

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10th Annual Tennessee Workers' Comp Conference - Materials Only

Held at the Embassy Suites—Nashville South/Cool Springs
Wednesday-Friday, November 9-11, 2016

Order your materials from this three-day satisfaction-guaranteed event and enhance your professional skill set.

This conference featured two tracks – one for attorneys and one for employers, HR professionals, adjusters, TPAs, and insurers. Attendees chose one track or switched between tracks throughout the conference. 

What attendees took away from this conference: 

  • Chief Judge Ken Switzer and Judge Pam Johnson, with the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims, as well as Judges Tim Conner and Marshall Davidson of the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
  • Insight on causation issues under the new law from a panel of attorneys and physicians, about when it is appropriate to terminate an employee who has filed a workers’ comp claim, and receive a comparison of how workers’ comp injuries are resolved under the “old” (pre-July 1, 2014) versus the “new” (post-July 1, 2014) law
  • An update on the latest rulings from the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Panels, the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board, and the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims
  • Bureau of Workers’ Compensation representatives on the employer penalty process, Drug Formulary, pain management rules, and the ombudsman/mediation program
  • Employers will got up to date on relevant issues, such as managing claims under the new law, traps to avoid when conducting an accident investigation, the physician panel process, the interplay between workers’ comp and other employment laws, how to streamline your workers’ comp processes and programs, training your supervisors to manage claims efficiently, and other employment law filing requirements that you need to know. 
  • Attorneys will got up to date on complex issues, such as Medicare set-asides, handling disputes over an employee’s future medical benefits, new pain management rules, “hot topics” from the plaintiff’s perspective, and ethical issues arising under the new law. 


Your conference faculty delivered true expertise on the most complex issues:

WORKERS’ COMP JUDGES 

  • Judge Tim Conner 
  • Judge Marshall Davidson 
  • Judge Pam Johnson 
  • Chief Judge Ken Switzer 


TENNESSEE BUREAU OF WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

  • Troy Haley 
  • Brian Holmes 
  • Robert B. Snyder, M.D.


WORKERS’ COMP ATTORNEYS

  • Mary Dee Allen, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones PLLC 
  • Fred Baker, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones PLLC 
  • Leslie Bishop, Lewis, Thomason, King, Krieg, & Waldrop, P.C. 
  • Kitty Boyte, Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP 
  • Adrienne B. Fazio, Manier & Herod 
  • Greg Grisham, Ford & Harrison LLP 
  • T. Joseph Lynch, III, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones PLLC 
  • Marshall McClarnon, Ponce Law 
  • Stacie D. Miller, Arnett, Draper & Hagood, LLP 
  • Jessica Housch Silinsky, Carr Allison 
  • Kenneth D. Veit, Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan PLLC


OTHERS

  • Dr. Jeffrey Hazlewood, Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, subspecialty Board Certification in Pain Medicine 
  • Dawn Trojan-Randle, Claim Specialist at Brentwood Services

 

Who attended? 

  • Employers 
  • Insurance adjusters 
  • Third party administrators 
  • Safety and Human Resource managers 
  • Plaintiffs’ and defense attorneys 
  • In-house counsel 

Speakers

Mary Dee AllenMary Dee Allen has been a member in the Cookeville office of Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones, PLLC, since 2003. She has been a practicing trial attorney since 1992, handling primarily workers’ compensation defense and employment discrimination defense, in state and federal courts and administrative agencies. She obtained an Associates Degree in Nursing from Union University in 1988, a Bachelor’s Degree in History from Union University in 1989, and a JD from the University of Memphis in 1992. She is Legislative Co-Chair of the Upper Cumberland Society of Human Resource Management.


Fred BakerFred Baker has been a member in the Cookeville office of Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones, PLLC, since 2001. His practice includes an emphasis in workers’ compensation and employment discrimination defense, as well as ADA and FMLA compliance. He is the editor of the Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Handbook, 5th Edition, published by M. Lee Smith Publishers, a division of BLR®, and he is on the Advisory Board for the Tennessee Workers’ Comp Reporter. He was selected as a Rising Star in 2012, 2013, and 2014 by Super Lawyers. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy, summa cum laude, from Transylvania University and his law degree, magna cum laude, from the University of Tennessee.


Leslie BishopLeslie Bishop is a defense attorney and shareholder with the Nashville office of Lewis, Thomason, King, Krieg, & Waldrop, P.C. She is responsible for all aspects of a general defense litigation practice, with an emphasis in workers’ compensation and employment law. Her employment practice ranges from representation of employers at state agencies to trial on all employment issues. She currently serves as co-chair of the firm’s Workers’ Compensation Practice Group. She joined the firm from the Tennessee Department of Labor Workers’ Compensation Division where she supervised the Knoxville Regional Office which covered 19 counties. She has served as a member of the Governor’s Task Force charged with reform of workers’ compensation laws in the State of Tennessee. She has been a certified Mediator and has successfully participated in over 1,000 mediations, primarily workers’ compensation disputes.


Katherine (Kitty) BoyteKatherine (Kitty) Boyte is a defense attorney with Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete LLP, in Nashville. She has, over the past 20 plus years, successfully guided many of the largest employers of middle Tennessee through workers’ compensation and employment law issues. She has litigated workers’ compensation cases in well over half of the 95 counties in the state of Tennessee. She is a frequent speaker to workers’ comp insiders and insurers on a national level, and is a guest lecturer on workers’ compensation at the Nashville School of Law. She is also heavily involved in legislative changes to the workers’ compensation system in Tennessee, and previously served as a member of the Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council.


Judge Tim ConnerJudge Tim Conner is a judge on the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board. He had practiced law with Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan PLLC, in Knoxville, since 1992 and had been a member of the firm since 1997. He concentrated his practice in the areas of workers’ compensation and general liability defense, including an emphasis on toxic exposure claims. He is a frequent lecturer on workers’ compensation issues in Tennessee. He became a Rule 31 Listed General Civil Mediator with the Tennessee Supreme Court in 2007. He was also an adjunct professor at the University of Tennessee College of Law, teaching the course on workers’ compensation law. He received his B.A., cum laude, from Boston University and his J.D. from Wake Forest University.


Marshall L. Davidson, IIIMarshall L. Davidson, III, is the Presiding Judge for the Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board, appointed to this position by Governor Bill Haslam in 2014. After graduating with honors from the University of Tennessee College of Law, where he served on the Tennessee Law Review, Judge Davidson worked as a law clerk for Judge Houston Goddard on the Tennessee Court of Appeals and then Chief Justice Frank Drowota on the Tennessee Supreme Court. He then spent time in private practice, handling both civil and criminal cases before serving as a Staff Attorney for the Tennessee Supreme Court for 22 years, focusing on civil appeals. Under the supervision of the Chief Justice, Judge Davidson implemented and managed the Supreme Court’s system for handling appeals of workers’ compensation cases for part of that time. He has served as a Judge Advocate General Officer in the United States Army Reserves, was an adjunct professor at Middle Tennessee State University for 11 years, and has been on the faculty of the Nashville School of Law since 1992, teaching torts and advanced legal writing.


Adrienne B. FazioAdrienne B. Fazio, with Manier & Herod in Nashville, practices primarily in workers’ compensation. Ms. Fazio graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. from University of Southern Mississippi and earned her J.D. from Tulane University School of Law in New Orleans, Louisiana. After practicing civil litigation and workers’ compensation law in Mississippi, she moved to Birmingham, Alabama, where she devoted her practice solely to assisting clients nationwide with Medicare Secondary Payer compliance, including Section 111 Reporting, conditional payment claim issues and Medicare Set-asides. In April 2012, she left private practice and took a position as a Workers’ Compensation Specialist IV with the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Workers’ Compensation Division, in Nashville. There, she represented several programs, including the Workers’ Compensation penalty program, Uninsured Employers Fund and Employee Misclassification Fund, as well as briefly working with Utilization Review. Additionally, she was responsible for advising the Division regarding Medicare requirements involved in closing future medicals. Ms. Fazio is admitted to practice in Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi. She is a member of the Tennessee and Nashville Bar Associations, as well as a member of the Mid-South Workers’ Compensation Association, the Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association and the Defense Research Institute.


Greg GrishamGreg Grisham is a partner in the Nashville Office of Ford Harrison, LLP and has over 25 years of successful experience counseling and representing employers in all aspects of workplace law in Tennessee and across the United States. He has helped employers avoid claims, charges and lawsuits with a focus on preventative practices. Preventative practices include counseling in situations involving discipline, termination, demotion, promotion and other workplace changes in the terms and conditions of employment, harassment investigations, wage and hour compliance, FMLA Compliance, Reasonable Accommodation assessment, supervisor training and the review of employment policies and procedures. He has successfully litigated hundreds of administrative charges, employment lawsuits, and arbitration demands on behalf of employers, including federal and state law claims alleging discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination, defamation, invasion of privacy, breach of contract, wage and hour violations and ERISA violations, among others. He also represents employers before the National Labor Relations Board in unfair labor practice proceedings. He represents employers in the enforcement of post-employment restrictive covenants such as non-compete, non-solicitation and non-disclosure agreements and related trade secret litigation. He also advises Tennessee Public Charter Schools on education law and workplace compliance matters. Mr. Grisham has extensive experience working with insurance carriers and their insureds in the defense of EPLI claims. He is a regular speaker at public seminars on workplace law issues and has authored numerous articles on a variety of labor and employment law related topics. He holds an AV Preeminent Peer Review rating from Martindale-Hubbell and has been selected for inclusion in Mid-South Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers in America for Employment Litigation-Management side. Mr. Grisham was recently elected as a Fellow to the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Dr. Jeffrey E. HazlewoodDr. Jeffrey E. Hazlewood practices physical medicine and rehabilitation in both Lebanon and Murfreesboro and is an Associate Staff member of the University Medical Center in Lebanon. After receiving his medical degree from the University of Tennessee, Memphis, he completed his residency at the University of Alabama, Birmingham. A Fellow of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Dr. Hazlewood is Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation with a subspecialty Board Certification in Pain Medicine. He is a member of the Medical Impairment Rating Registry and has received training on the Fifth and Sixth Editions of the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment. His society memberships include The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, the American Association of Electrodiagnostic Medicine, the Tennessee Medical Association, the American Medical Association, and the Rotary Club. Dr. Hazlewood is an experienced speaker on various aspects of pain management.


Brian Holmes is Director of Mediation and Ombudsman Services for the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation in the Department of Labor & Workforce Development.


Judge Pamela B. JohnsonJudge Pamela B. Johnson is a judge on the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims. She was previously Of Counsel with Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan PLLC in Knoxville, where she focused her practice in the areas of workers’ compensation defense, personal injury defense, premises liability defense, products liability defense and construction liability defense. She represented various individuals, employers, businesses and insurers in matters of civil liability, including workers’ compensation defense, premises liability defense, personal liability defense, products liability defense, and construction liability defense. Her practice included an active trial and appellate practice as well as an administrative practice before the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.


T. Joseph Lynch, IIIT. Joseph Lynch, III, is a Member in the Knoxville, Tennessee office of Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones, PLLC, which he joined in 2004. His law practice includes an emphasis in labor and employment law and the defense of workers' compensation claims for employers. Mr. Lynch received his B.A. in English, cum laude, from Carson-Newman College and his J.D. from the University of Tennessee School of Law. He has an AV Preeminent® Rating – which is the highest possible rating given by Martindale-Hubbell, the leading independent attorney rating entity. He is a member of Covenant Presbyterian Church. He is a member of the Knoxville Bar Association and Tennessee Bar Association and is a 2010 graduate of the Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Program. Mr. Lynch is a member of the Society of Human Resource Management, and serves as a Board Member for the Tennessee Valley Human Resource Association.


Marshall McClarnonMarshall McClarnon, with Ponce Law in Goodlettsville, handles workers’ compensation, personal injury, auto accident, premises liability, and products liability cases. Prior to joining Ponce Law in December 2013, he worked as a plaintiff’s attorney for six years. Mr. McClarnon grew up in Gallatin, Tennessee. He attended Lambuth University in Jackson, Tennessee, where he graduated cum laude with a double major in history and political science. While an undergraduate, Marshall served as president of his chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and studied abroad at Regent’s University London. He went on to earn his J.D. from Southern Illinois University Law School in Carbondale, Illinois. He is licensed to practice law in Tennessee and the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee. He became an attorney because he wanted to help people and provide equal access to the law and court system. He volunteers with the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition Citizens Workshop that helps immigrants navigate the citizenship application process.


Stacie D. MillerStacie D. Miller, with Arnett, Draper & Hagood, LLP, in Knoxville, has a fairly diverse practice but focuses her practice on areas that assist individual people, such as workers’ compensation, family law and conservatorships, estate planning, and personal injury. Ms. Miller received her B.A. from the University of Tennessee in 1994 and her J.D. from Loyola University School of Law in 2003, where she majored in both civil and common law. Ms. Miller is a native of Knoxville but after law school decided to practice in New Orleans until returning home after Hurricane Katrina. She is admitted to practice in all Tennessee and Louisiana state courts, the United States District Court for the Eastern and Middle Districts of Tennessee and the Eastern District of Louisiana. Ms. Miller joined Arnett, Draper & Hagood as an associate attorney in August 2008.


Dawn Trojan-Randle is a Claim Specialist with Brentwood Services Administrators, Inc., in Brentwood, Tennessee.


Jessica H. SilinskyJessica H. Silinsky is a shareholder with the Medicare Compliance Group of Carr Allison in Birmingham. Ms. Silinsky assists clients across the nation in complying with the Medicare Secondary Payer Act. She frequently gives presentations on the topic to insurers, employers and defense attorneys and has authored numerous articles regarding the same. She received her B.S. from the University of Alabama and her J.D. from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University (AL), cum laude. While in law school, she served as Associate Editor for the American Journal of Trial Advocacy.


Robert B. Snyder, M.D.Robert B. Snyder, M.D., is Medical Director for the Bureau of Workers’ Compensation in the Department of Labor & Workforce Development. Dr. Snyder retired from his active medical practice with Tennessee Orthopaedic Alliance. He is a graduate of Belmont University and Wayne State University of Medicine. During his active career, he was president of the Vanderbilt Orthopedic Society and president of the St. Thomas Hospital medical staff. Dr. Snyder has also participated in Orthopedic Overseas’ medical education project in Peru. For many years Dr. Snyder has served on the Bureau’s Medical Cost Containment Committee and is a past chair of the committee.


Chief Judge Ken SwitzerChief Judge Ken Switzer, of Nashville, is chief judge of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims. He previously practiced law at Howard Tate in Nashville, where he focused his practice in the areas of workers’ compensation, employment discrimination, personal injury, medical malpractice, and products liability defense. He received his B.A., cum laude, from David Lipscomb College and his J.D. from the University of Louisville.

 


Kenneth D. VeitKenneth D. Veit has been practicing law since 2003. Mr. Veit practices civil litigation in several areas of insurance defense. While in law school, Mr. Veit was a member of Phi Delta Phi, served on the Moot Court Board and was a member of the Jessup International Moot Court Team. Mr. Veit is a member of the American Bar Association, Tennessee and Nashville Bar Associations, Kentucky Bar Association, ALFA International, Defense Research Institute, and Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association. He has extensive workers' compensation defense experience at administrative, trial and appellate levels. He also performs general insurance defense work including premises liability, auto liability, trucking liability, and construction.

Employer Track

JOINT SESSION – Day One (Wednesday, November 9)

Registration
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Tennessee’s Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims: Practices & Procedures
1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Chief Judge Ken Switzer, Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims
Judge Pam Johnson, Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims
The creation of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims was a significant part of the 2013 reforms. Since that time, the number of judges has expanded, statutes and regulations have been tweaked, and cases are now moving steadily through the trial system. This session will provide an update on the court, cover basic procedures, and highlight some pitfalls to avoid.

  • Petition for benefit determination
  • Mediation requirements
  • Dispute certification notice
  • Initial hearings
  • Catastrophic injury
  • Expedited hearings
  • Discovery
  • Time requirements
  • Settlements


Break
2:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m.

Navigating the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
2:45 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Presiding Judge Marshall Davidson, Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
Judge Tim Conner, Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
Let Judges Davidson and Conner walk you through practice and procedure guidelines in the appeals board and highlight some pitfalls to avoid.

Pain Management is More than Just Pain Pills
4:00 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.
Dr. Jeffrey Hazlewood, Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Dr. Hazlewood will provide an update on pain management in the workers’ comp arena in Tennessee. He will discuss new pain guidelines, especially regarding the appropriate use of opioids for chronic pain and the importance of taking a thorough history while conducting a physical examination to make the appropriate “pain diagnosis.” He will explore how these steps assist in eliminating unnecessary imaging and procedures.


EMPLOYER TRACK – Day Two (Thursday, November 10)

Conducting an Investigation: Tips, Procedures, and Traps
8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
Stacie D. Miller, Arnett, Draper, & Hagood

  • Why conduct investigations
  • When should an investigation be conducted
  • Identifying who should conduct the investigation
  • Overview of how to conduct an investigation
  • Elements of an investigation
  • Witness interviews and “gathering the whole story”
  • Maintaining investigatory reports
  • Best practices for maintaining investigatory files


Cost-Effective Claims Management: Tips and Traps to Avoid
9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Leslie Bishop, Lewis, King, Krieg & Waldrop
Effective workers’ compensation claims management saves employers time, money and grief. Best practices in cost control strategies, plan design and program development positively impact the bottom line. Ms. Bishop will give an overview of how to manage a workers’ comp claim from start to finish.

Morning Break
10:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

Workers’ Comp Update
10:15 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Fred Baker, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Mr. Baker will review the latest decisions from the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Panels, the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board, and the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims.

Medical Panels Under the New Law
11:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Fred Baker, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Mr. Baker will discuss the adjustments that have been made to the physician panel process.

LUNCH (Thursday lunch is included with registration)
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Interplay Between Workers’ Comp, the ADA, and the FMLA
1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Greg Grisham, Ford & Harrison

  • Overlapping benefits
  • Transitioning between benefits
  • Keeping good records
  • Common pitfalls in eligibility verification
  • Return to work issues
  • Absolute absenteeism policies
  • Best practices/fact scenarios


Workers’ Comp 101 for Employers
2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Dawn Trojan-Randle, Claim Specialist, Brentwood Services Administrators, Inc.
Workers’ compensation can be daunting to anyone newly assigned to this area – or for someone who may have to wear multiple hats and just not be able to focus in on maximizing their workers' comp processes and programs. Consider, for instance, just a few of the tasks/responsibilities associated with managing your workers’ comp program: accommodations, restrictions, working with doctors, return to work, managing claims, dealing with your workers' comp insurer, and more! If you have workers’ comp responsibilities at your workplace, but are unsure of how the process works – or are overwhelmed by the sheer number of tasks associated with it – you may need some help to simplify things and help you get the basic time- and cost-savings processes in place.

Afternoon Break
3:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.

How Other Filing Requirements Come Into Play with Workers’ Comp
3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Dawn Trojan-Randle, Claim Specialist, Brentwood Services Administrators, Inc.
Learn from an experienced claim specialist how other filing requirements, set out in the ADA or FMLA or mandated by OSHA, come into play with your workers’ comp claim. You’ll learn how the employee’s work history, his or her disciplinary records, or his or her absenteeism history all play an important role in managing a workers’ comp claim.

Supervisor Training on Claims Management: What You Must Know
4:15 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Mary Dee Allen, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Supervisors have a significant role to play in the workers’ compensation process for an injured employee. Ms. Allen will discuss what supervisors need to know about the workers’ comp law in order to manage claims, such as the importance of investigating claims and enforcing safety rules.


JOINT SESSION - Day Three (Friday, November 11)

Comparing Scenarios/Workplace Injuries Under the Old and New Law
8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
Kenny Veit, Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan
Mr. Veit will compare and contrast workplace scenarios and injuries occurring under both the old law (pre-July 2014) and the new law (post-July 2014).

Penalty Program Update
9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Troy Haley, Director of Penalty Program
Mr. Haley will discuss the newly-adopted penalty rules and give examples of penalty-worthy offenses.

Retaliatory Discharge
9:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Mary Dee Allen, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Ms. Allen will discuss what is required to establish a claim for retaliatory discharge, how such claim can be defended, and what factors an employer should consider before firing an employee who has filed a workers’ comp claim.

Break
10:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

Causation: Medical or Legal Determinations, Panel and Case Law Discussions
10:15 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Kitty Boyte, Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, along with a panel of other attorneys and physicians
Causation is a key concept in Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Law that consists of both medical and legal components. Understanding what medical facts need to be expressed by the physician to support the application of the legal standard by attorneys and judges for medical causation will be the focus of a panel discussion. The panel, which will be led by Ms. Boyte and will include other attorneys and physicians, will explore situations such as work injuries that are the primary cause for a need for medical treatment but an underlying pathology already existed. The panel will discuss what findings must be present in an individual’s medical record to support a conclusion that factors other than work activity caused an injury or a need for treatment.

Attorney Track

JOINT SESSION – Day One (Wednesday, November 9)

Registration
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Tennessee’s Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims: Practices & Procedures
1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Chief Judge Ken Switzer, Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims
Judge Pam Johnson, Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims
The creation of the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims was a significant part of the 2013 reforms. Since that time, the number of judges has expanded, statutes and regulations have been tweaked, and cases are now moving steadily through the trial system. This session will provide an update on the court, cover basic procedures, and highlight some pitfalls to avoid.

  • Petition for benefit determination
  • Mediation requirements
  • Dispute certification notice
  • Initial hearings
  • Catastrophic injury
  • Expedited hearings
  • Discovery
  • Time requirements
  • Settlements


Break
2:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m.

Navigating the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
2:45 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Presiding Judge Marshall Davidson, Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
Judge Tim Conner, Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board
Let Judges Davidson and Conner walk you through practice and procedure guidelines in the appeals board and highlight some pitfalls to avoid.

Pain Management is More than Just Pain Pills
4:00 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.
Dr. Jeffrey Hazlewood, Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Dr. Hazlewood will provide an update on pain management in the workers’ comp arena in Tennessee. He will discuss new pain guidelines, especially regarding the appropriate use of opioids for chronic pain and the importance of taking a thorough history while conducting a physical examination to make the appropriate “pain diagnosis.” He will explore how these steps assist in eliminating unnecessary imaging and procedures.


ATTORNEY TRACK – Day Two (Thursday, November 10)

Future Medicals: Issues on the Road Beyond Recovery
8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
Adrienne Fazio, Manier Herod
An employee receives a settlement, which includes future medical benefits. Problems may arise, for example, when the employer thinks a medical procedure is not related to the employee’s injury. Ms. Fazio will discuss the information necessary when seeking to close future medicals and will offer some best practices and practical tips for handling disputes that arise when future medicals remain open.

Ethical Challenges in Workers’ Compensation Law
9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Joseph Lynch, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones

  • Rules of Professional Conduct
  • Communication with other parties
  • Attorney fees
  • Lawyer liability


Morning Break
10:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

Update on Ombudsman and Mediation Services
10:15 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Brian Holmes, Director of Mediation and Ombudsman Services
Mr. Holmes will give an overview of the Ombudsman Program that permits any party that is not represented by legal counsel to request the services of a workers’ compensation ombudsman.

Medicare Set-Asides: What Attorneys Need to Know
11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Jessica Silinsky, Carr Allison
Ms. Silinsky will provide an update on recent developments related to Medicare set-asides, including reporting requirements.

LUNCH (Thursday lunch is included with registration)
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Treatment Guidelines Update
1:00 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.
Robert B. Snyder, M.D., Medical Director, Bureau of Workers’ Compensation
Dr. Snyder gives an overview of the treatment guidelines and new pain management rules, which were implemented on January 1, 2016, and will provide an update on the Drug Formulary, which became effective on August 28.

Workers’ Comp Update
1:45 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Fred Baker, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Mr. Baker will review the latest decisions from the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Panels, the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board, and the Court of Workers’ Compensation Claims.

Afternoon Break
3:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.

Hot Topics in Workers’ Comp: The Plaintiff’s Perspective
3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Marshall McClarnon, Ponce Law
Mr. McClarnon will discuss some “hot” topics which plaintiff’s attorneys are dealing with under the new law.

Panel Discussion on New Law and Procedures
4:15 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Fred Baker, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones, moderator
Kitty Boyte, Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Profete
Adrienne Fazio, Manier Herod
Joseph Lynch, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Marshall McClarnon, Ponce Law
The panel will discuss and entertain questions regarding the new court system and the changes which became effective in 2014.


JOINT SESSION – Day Three (Friday, November 11)

Comparing Scenarios/Workplace Injuries Under the Old and New Law
8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.
Kenny Veit, Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan
Mr. Veit will compare and contrast workplace scenarios and injuries occurring under both the old law (pre-July 2014) and the new law (post-July 2014).

Penalty Program Update
9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Troy Haley, Director of Penalty Program
Mr. Haley will discuss the newly-adopted penalty rules and give examples of penalty-worthy offenses.

Retaliatory Discharge
9:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Mary Dee Allen, Wimberly Lawson Wright Daves & Jones
Ms. Allen will discuss what is required to establish a claim for retaliatory discharge, how such claim can be defended, and what factors an employer should consider before firing an employee who has filed a workers’ comp claim.

Break
10:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m.

Causation: Medical or Legal Determinations, Panel and Case Law Discussions
10:15 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Kitty Boyte, Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, along with a panel of other attorneys and physicians
Causation is a key concept in Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Law that consists of both medical and legal components. Understanding what medical facts need to be expressed by the physician to support the application of the legal standard by attorneys and judges for medical causation will be the focus of a panel discussion. The panel, which will be led by Ms. Boyte and will include other attorneys and physicians, will explore situations such as work injuries that are the primary cause for a need for medical treatment but an underlying pathology already existed. The panel will discuss what findings must be present in an individual’s medical record to support a conclusion that factors other than work activity caused an injury or a need for treatment.

 
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