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A DBA Case Study: An Aircraft Mechanic, a neck injury and an insurance company doctor

"We don't pull punches. If you want beating around the bush - you have come to the wrong place.  If you want brutal, frank  truth, no matter what - stick around. Check out our stuff.  You'll see what hundreds of DBA workers see  here every month.   We will help you win your DBA case."  DBA Lawyer - Bill Turley

DBA Lawyer Straight Talk: A Case Study -The Defense Base Act, Aircraft, Airways, Airlines, Pilots, Flight Attendants, Mechanics And The Like

The First Thing You Must Do

The first thing you must do is always tell the truth. No matter what it is you are worried about, you must always be honest and never sugarcoat anything to the judge or you attorney. If you do, then you will lose your case. Trust me, I have seen it time and time again. Do not be that person.

The Next Step

Before you even think about signing any forms from the DBA insurance company, you need to do your research. Order my free book, Win Your Defense Base Act Case: The Ultimate Straight Talk Roadmap To The Medical Treatment and Money You and Your Family Deserve.

Check out all the 5 star reviews for my book on Amazon.com. These reviews were written by folks like yourself, who have read my book. It is full of information that will benefit you with your road to recovery and peace of mind after becoming an injured DBA contractor.

If you need help now, give us at call at (619) 234-2833.

The Defense Base Act, Aircraft, Airways, Airlines And The Like

Various airlines, airways and such fly operations for the United States of America.  These companies fly charters and the like for the U.S. Many have been involved with Afghanistan and Iraq.  Others fly to every continent on earth.  These airline employees are covered by the Defense Base Act.  From pilots to flight attendants to aircraft mechanics - - these employees are entitled to DBA benefits if they are injured overseas and their families are entitled to DBA death benefits if they are killed.

Defense Base Act Case Study: Aircraft Mechanic Injures His Neck And DBA Insurance Carrier Sends Him To A Biased Insurance Company Doctor

Based upon our experience, Defense Base Act workers cover just about every type of job that you can imagine. This case study is about a Defense Base Act worker that worked for a DBA airlines. This worker is an aircraft mechanic. But pilots, flight attendants and the like are also covered DBA employees.

A Hit On The Head

Joe Smith struck his head on an emergency release handle on the door of an aircraft on which he was working in Afghanistan. Joe resumed his duties for the day. Later that night, Joe experienced a tingling sensation in his upper body, and he awoke the next morning with numbness in his left hand. Joe reported his injury to his supervisor. His supervisor wasn't really interested in taking a report, so Joe sent him an email documenting that he had reported an injury. Concerned about his health, Joe traveled from Afghanistan back to the United States for medical treatment.

Upon returning home, he went to a local emergency room. The emergency room physician recommended Joe see a neurologist. Joe came under the care of neurologist, who said Joe 's symptoms were consistent with an injury to his cervical disc. Joe's MRI showed a disc problem, but surgery wasn't needed.

Joe then began seeing another doctor for pain management. Joe received series of steroid injections. Joe said the injections provided some relief from his pain symptoms.

The DBA Insurance Company Doctor

Joe then was evaluated by the Defense Base Act insurance company doctor who concluded that Joe 's injuries were not caused by the hit on the head. Instead, Joe's neck problems were due to pre-existing degenerative disc disease. After the evaluation, the Defense Base Act insurance company stopped providing DBA benefits. Joe lawyered-up with a really good DBA lawyer.

Joe, You And Defense Base Act Law

The Defense Base Act provides you with a presumption that your disabling injury is causally related to your employment if you can prove the following two elements:
(1) you suffered an injury or harm, and
(2) employment conditions existed which could have caused, aggravated, or accelerated your condition.

Once you have made this prima facie showing, the burden shifts to the DBA insurance company to rebut the presumption with substantial evidence employment conditions did not cause your injury.

Under the DBA, substantial evidence is relevant evidence that a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. If the DBA insurance company meets this burden, the DBA insurance company rebuts the presumption, and the administrative law judge must then weigh all the evidence and render a decision supported by substantial evidence. Meaning, the presumption disappears (read: is no longer in effect) and you will need to prove your can by a preponderance of the evidence. Which is a fancy way of saying, in baseball terms, "Ties go to the DBA insurance company."

The Judge's Decision

In Joe's case, the DBA insurance carrier attempted to rebut the presumption with a report by a doctor that only examined Joe once and opined Joe 's symptoms were not work-related. Joe 's treating physician testified he believed the DBA insurance company doctor's report was false or mis-characterized Joe 's condition. In addition, every other physician who has treated Joe, found Joe 's condition to be related to his at-work injury. Finally, the email that Joe had sent to his supervisor documenting his injury also helped persuade the Judge that Joe really was injured.

Therefore, the Judge held that the DBA insurance carrier failed to rebut the Defense Base Act presumption. But even assuming the presumption was rebutted, the Judge found the evidence weighed as a whole supports Joe's contentions.

The Judge Ordered the DBA insurance carrier to provide compensation benefits and medical treatment to Joe.

Our Best Advice

Whenever you are bringing a court case, your credibility is always at issue. Always tell the truth. You may have heard me say, "Tell the truth" again and again, sort of like a mantra. That's because that is the best advice you are going to get about what you can do to help your lawyer win your DBA case.


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We are asked by injured DBA workers across the World to represent them. We have a World wide practice. We represent injured Defense Base Act workers that live across World.  We can help you and your family too.

America’s Leading DBA Lawyer

     Awarded Super Lawyer 2011 - 2018

     Highest Rated DBA Lawyer      San Francisco Avvo.com Rating    San Diego Avvo.com Rating

     Invited to Speak on the Longshore Act / Defense Base Act at 2011 Maritime Personal Injury Seminar

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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

William Turley
“When I seek out professional advice, I don’t want B.S., I want it straight up. I figure you do also.”

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