“Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.” Spencer Johnson
When handling your DBA case, nothing matters more than the honest truth. Nothing. You must be straightforward and honest about your case. I have seen many instances where a client will sugarcoat their injury and the courts throw out the case. Why? All because they were not honest from the get go.
The DBA insurance company is not on your side. They have traps laying around for you to fall in. And bet on it, if you do not follow the proper steps with your DBA case, you will fall right in.
The Next Step
Remember the DBA insurance company is not your friend. I strongly suggest you order a free copy of my book, Win Your Defense Base Act Case: The Ultimate Straight Talk Roadmap To The Medical Treatment and Money You and Your Family Deserve. Trust me. My only goal here is to make sure honest hard working folks like you, do not get ripped off by these companies.
Also you can check out my podcast at DBAradio.com where i cover important DBA issues.
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You Need Medical Evidence to Prevail in Your Case
I call them “sore back” or “sore neck” cases. These are cases where folks have sore backs and no “objective evidence” to support their pain. Are these folks telling the truth? I have seen cases where I certainly believed them. I have won these cases - but they are incredibly difficult to win.
This article is a case study of a recent Defense Base Act case (not handled by our office) that illustrates the need for medical evidence to win your DBA case. The Benefits Review Board (BRB) is the first appeals court for Defense Base Act cases. This case was a recent decision by the BRB of what appears to be a sore back case.
You Need Persuasive Medical Evidence
In order to prevail in your DBA case you are going to need persuasive medical evidence. In this case the claimant was injured in Iraq when he fell in a hole. He returned home and he got an MRI that was normal. He got intermittent medical treatment. His treating physician found him to have reached maximum medical improvement and that he could work without restrictions.
After his work injury, claimant was laid-off by the overseas employer in Iraq; he worked for various employers in Haiti and the United States as a construction superintendent. Then he stopped working. Claimant sought compensation for disability due to his work injury.
“But my Back Really Hurts” May Not Win it For You
The claimant apparently tried to win his case by saying his back hurt. All of the doctors hired by the insurance company rejected claimant’s subjective complaints of disabling back pain based on the absence of corroborating objective medical evidence.
In his decision, the administrative law judge found that claimant did not establish that he is unable to return to his usual employment for employer due to his injury. The BRB understandably - on these facts - affirmed the Judges decision.
Based on what I see, it was foreseeable that both the Judge and the appeals court would deny this claim. I am not trying to “second guess” the lawyers in the case. But I am trying to make this loss a teaching point to help you and your case.
It Usually Comes Down to Medical Evidence
The point that I am making here is that you are going to need medical evidence to win your case. Not all cases are as seemingly cut and dry as this case seems.
But here is the deal. If your treating physician is not in your corner - it is going to be an uphill battle for you to win your DBA case.
Choose Your Doctor Wisely
The second teaching point here is that you have to be really careful in choosing your free choice physician.
Can you win a “sore back” or “sore neck” case? In some circumstances you can. But you need to line up your evidence well. Meaning, your treating physician for starters. And what I call “before and after witnesses.” That is witnesses that will say you were fine before and not the same afterwards.
Disclaimer: Please understand these discussions and/or examples are not legal advice. All legal situations are different. This testimonial, endorsement and/or discussion does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, your particular case/ situation and/or this particular case/ situation. Thanks, Bill Turley