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What is the Last Responsible Employer Rule for the Defense Base Act?

Last Responsible Employer Rule - Last Responsible Carrier Rule - Defense Base Act Lawyer - Bill Turley

“I give you an insider’s view of the DBA. I don’t sugar coat it for you. I give it to you straight.

No lawyer talk, no double talk. Just good old fashioned, unsweetened truth.” 

Defense Base Act Lawyer  and author of the 5 Star book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case 
Bill Turley

 

Forward on the last responsible employer rule and the last responsible carrier rule (in other words, let’s be straight-up

I’m all about being straight-up with folks. When I seek out professional advice, when things suck, I want to hear they suck. I don’t want smoke blown. Just tell it to me straight - is all I ask. I talk to my clients the same way that I want to be talked to by folks that I hire.
 
So here goes. When I see a DBA case is going to be a last responsible employer case or a last responsible carrier case - it isn’t usually good. Sure, there are benefits to you not having to prove apportionment of your disability. Got it.
 
But, by and large, it’s just more difficult to get a last responsible employer case or a last responsible carrier case settled because invariably the DBA insurance carrier that is on the hook for paying your DBA benefits is hoping for a “hail-Mary” type play that will keep them from having to provide you benefits. That is, passing the buck to another DBA insurance company.  I will explain more about this later.
 
So invariably, in some cases, you may be waiting to get your benefits. Not always. But, too often. 
 
This is why you have to be extra zealous in moving your case along when you have two different DBA insurance companies pointing at each other. This is why you need to do everything  you can not to tank your DBA case. 
 
There is no room for dillying or dallying. If you first catch a hint that your case is a last responsible employer case or a last responsible carrier case - - my advice to you is for you to immediately lawyer-up. With the best, honest DBA lawyer that will agree to take your case. Now, on to our regularly scheduled program.
 

What should I do if I have a last responsible employer (or DBA insurance carrier) case?

In this article I give you specific steps you should take if you have a last responsible employer DBA case or a last responsible carrier DBA case. This is near the end of the article, so make sure you don’t miss it. 
 
The reason why I wait until the end of the article to give you specific steps that you need to take is because the more information you have the more you will understand why I am telling you to do what you need to do. Information really is power. The"whys" are very important. 
 

In this article I answer the following questions and address the following issues:

What should I do if I have a last responsible employer (or DBA insurance carrier) case?

What is the last responsible employer rule for the Defense Base Act?
 
No good deed remains unpunished

Don't do anything until you read my book

This is usually not good for you - because it can delay you getting your DBA benefits

What is the Defense Base Act last responsible carrier rule?

When I have an injury with two different overseas civilian contractor employers - who is responsible for my Defense Base Act benefits? .....When my employer under the Defense Base Act has two different DBA insurance companies - which insurance carrier is responsible for providing me DBA benefits?

How much aggravation does there need to be for an employer to be liable as the last responsible employer in a cumulative trauma case?
 
What is the rational or policy behind the last responsible employer rule?

Was there increased pain, a flare-up of pain, or a worsening of his condition caused by his work for a subsequent employer?

Occupational diseases and last responsible employer rule - who pays my DBA benefits?
 
Occupational diseases and last responsible employer rule - who pays my DBA benefits?

Cumulative trauma - natural progression vs.  accelerating or combining

What body parts are usually associated with cumulative trauma cases?

The Ninth Circuit and two-injury cases

The last responsible employer rule for cumulative trauma (or two injury cases) simplified

Is your current medical condition and your need for medical treatment - the result of a natural progression of your original DBA injury? Or.... Did your subsequent employment (read: your next employment) aggravate or accelerate your prior injury resulting in your current injury and your need for medical treatment?

Who has the burden of proving who is the last responsible employer? .... It’s not you

How can an employer (or DBA insurance company) prove that they are not the last responsible employer or DBA carrier?

What if my condition is aggravated or accelerated due to work I do when I am home (read: no longer overseas)?

The good news about the last responsible employer rule

Why the last responsible employer rule can suck for you

What should I do if I have a “last responsible employer” case or a “last responsible carrier” case? ..... You need to take action ( your game plan)
 
Where you need to start (with a cumulative trauma case): was there increased pain, a flare-up of pain or a worsening of your condition while you worked for the subsequent (second) employer?
 
A quick example and words of caution

Don’t be afraid of the second “injury” or employer!!! (Don’t walk into a sucker punch)

What if my pain/ disability is the same since my first injury?
 
Where you need to start (with a "occupational disease" case): were you exposed to the harmful stimuli with your last employer?
 
Steps you need to take if you have an occupational disease last responsible employer case or last responsible carrier case
 
Tell your doctor to read this article

Can you settle your case during the process?

Not dying on the vine


What is the last responsible employer rule for the Defense Base Act?

The Defense Base Act has a "last responsible employer rule.” Generally, under the "last responsible employer rule," a single employer may be held liable for the totality of your disability, even though your disability may be attributable to a series of injuries that you suffered while working for more than one employer. Cordero v. Triple A Mach. Shop, 580 F.2d 1331 (9th Cir. 1978), cert. denied, 440 U.S. 911, 99 S. Ct. 1223, 59 L. Ed. 2d 459 (1979).
 
Your  last “responsible” employer is liable for all your DBA compensation due to you, even though your prior employment may have contributed to your disability. Found. Constructors v. Director, 950 F.2d 621, 623 (9th Cir. 1991).

The last responsible employer rule is different for traumatic injuries than they are for occupational diseases (such as a hearing loss claim)
When determining the employer  to be held liable, the law applies this rule differently depending on whether your disability is an occupational disease, such as asbestosis, a heart condition or a hearing loss claim, or the result of cumulative traumas, like a back injury or a shoulder injury. Found. Constructors v. Director, 950 F.2d 621, 624 (9th Cir. 1991).
 

No good deed remains unpunished

How this often works is that an overseas contractor worker gets injured while working for one employer and then returns to work overseas and is then is injured while working for a second employer.  Now let’s bring this down to where you may have lived it.
 
You are injured while working overseas. You’re hurting. But you need to work. So, you grit it out and go back to work overseas even though you’re not 100%. You suck it up, butter-cup.
 
You didn’t fold when you could have. You tough it out.
 
Because that’s how you roll.
 
You either go to work for another overseas contracting company or the company you work for changes DBA insurance companies.
 
But, finally, you can’t do your job. You can’t do patrols in full-kit outside the wire. You can’t lift heavy gear. The pain is simply too much. Or you can’t handle the incoming rocket attacks. Or all of the above.
 
You’re finally so injured that you either can’t go back to work overseas, they end up sending you home or you drag your butt back to Kansas (or wherever you’re from).
Your reward once you’re so beat down that you can’t answer the bell is a “last responsible employer” DBA case.
 
In other words, as you no doubt realize - no good deed remains unpunished.
 
Now you’re in my world. The Defense Base Act world.
 
 
WIn Your Defense Base Act Case
 

Don't do anything until you read my book!!!

Get your free copy of the book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case here (or you can buy it on amazon.com). 


Before you do anything related to your DBA case - including, but not limited to - talking to the insurance adjuster, signing any forms (do not sign any forms, releases, etc.!!), giving a statement (don't give a statement!!!), going to your next medical appointment, attending an informal conference, attending a Labor Market Survey meeting, giving a deposition, attending a defense medical exam (also called an IME)... or anything else related to your DBA case - - you MUST first read my 5 Star book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case.
 
But nothing is better than reading my 5 Star book on Amazon.com - Win Your Defense Base Act Case.

Check out all the 5 Star Reviews on amazon.com.
 
5 Star Reviews on Amazon.com
 

This is usually not good for you - because it can delay you getting your DBA benefits

How this affects you is that the two different DBA insurance companies will point to each other and say that the other employer is the last responsible employer (or last responsible insurance carrier).
 
The result is that you will oftentimes not be getting timely DBA benefits because of these huge billion dollar insurance companies pointing at each other. Not good.


What is the Defense Base Act last responsible carrier rule?

When companies work under contracts from the U.S. Government while overseas (usually through the DOD or Department of State); federal law requires the companies to secure (read: obtain) Defense Base Act insurance.  The way this works is that overseas contractor companies will shop for the lowest premiums and they will sometimes frequently change DBA insurance companies.
 
If you work for an overseas contractor and you have more than one injury or aggravation to your injury and the company has two different insurance companies then the last responsible carrier will be the insurance carrier that is responsible for providing you with DBA benefits. 
 
How this affects you is that the two different DBA insurance companies will point to each other and say that the other DBA insurance company is the last responsible carrier. The result is that you will oftentimes not be getting DBA benefits because of their pointing to each other. Again, not good.
 
 
Call us at 619-304-1000  - If you call after regular business hours, when you leave a message, be sure to repeat your name and telephone number twice, so we get it correctly. And be sure to indicate whether it's okay if we respond by text.

Text us at 858-281-8008 - Be sure and put "new DBA case" in your text.

Or leave us a message on this webpage


When I have an injury with two different overseas civilian contractor employers - who is responsible for my Defense Base Act benefits? .....When my employer under the Defense Base Act has two different DBA insurance companies - which insurance carrier is responsible for providing me DBA benefits?

These are the big questions. This is why the DBA insurance carriers are pointing to each other for - so they can avoid having to pay you the benefits that you are entitled to.
 
The courts interpret and, in effect, make the law regarding the Longshore and Harbor Workers Compensation Act (LHWCA) and the Defense Base Act.  The Defense Base Act is an extension of the LHWCA. Thus, most of the cases with the last responsible employer rule are Longshore cases.
 
This is complicated due to the appeals process for DBA claims.  The first Court of Appeals, so to speak, for Defense Base Act cases is the Benefits Review Board (BRB).  The BRB decisions are then appealed to United States District Courts and/or to the Circuit Courts of Appeal.  There are eleven Circuits Courts of Appeal.  Thus, some circuits follow different interpretations of the law than other Circuits. 
 
In this article we take a look at how the Courts have interpreted the “last responsible employer rule” and the “last responsible carrier rule.”
 

How much aggravation does there need to be for an employer to be liable as the last responsible employer in a cumulative trauma case?

In the Foundation Constructors, Inc. case, the Ninth Circuit held the last employer  responsible for a preexisting back condition which deteriorated so much over the six months the employee worked for the last employer that he had to leave the job. Foundation Constructors, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers Compensation Programs 950 F.2d 621, 622, 625 (9th Cir. 1991).
 
The Third Circuit held the last employer responsible when the employee suffered a flare-up of pain after months of working long hours that resulted in a final debilitating event. Delaware River Stevedores, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs 279 F.3d 233, 242--43 (3d Cir. 2002).
 
In the Metropolitan Stevedore Company case ,  the Ninth Circuit held that an employer was responsible for an employee whose previous condition got progressively worse over one day of work, the only day that employee worked for the company. Metro. Stevedore Co. v. Crescent Wharf & Warehouse Co., 339 F.3d 1102, 1104, 1107 (2003). 


What is the rational or policy behind the last responsible employer rule?

Here is a quote from the Metropolitan case:

The assignment of liability to Metropolitan by the "last responsible employer" rule might seem harsh, because Price had been suffering from a knee condition for years and worked for Metropolitan only one day. However, there is inherent virtue in the "last responsible employer" rule. Each employer subject to the LHWCA shares the risk that it will bear the burden of compensation at one point or another, even if it was not predominantly responsible for the compensable injury. The unfairness to the last employer is mitigated by two factors: the spreading of the risk through mandatory insurance, and the availability of the second injury fund to the last employer in some cases. As this court stated in Foundation Constructors, "this rule serves to avoid the difficulties and delays connected with trying to apportion liability among several employers, and works to apportion liability in a roughly equitable manner, since all employers will be the last employer a proportionate share of the time." Found., 950 F.2d at 623. Having a bright line rule eliminates the need for costly litigation and helps ensure that workers receive timely and adequate compensation for their injuries under the LHWCA.
Metro. Stevedore Co. v. Crescent Wharf & Warehouse Co., 339 F.3d 1102, 1107 (Ninth Cir. 2003).

Was there increased pain, a flare-up of pain, or a worsening of his condition caused by his work for a subsequent employer?

In interpreting the aggravation rule, the Fifth Circuit has held the first employer liable where there was no indication in the record that the claimant suffered from increased pain, a flare-up of pain, or a worsening of his condition caused by his work for a subsequent employer.  Berry Brothers Gen. Contractors, Inc. v. Dir., OWCP, 261 F. App’x 663, 667 (5th Cir. 2008). 
 
The court noted that while the doctors “opined that strenuous activity consistent with welding work would likely aggravate an injury” the first employer/carrier was liable because nothing in the record indicated work for the subsequent employer actually aggravated the injury.   Berry Brothers Gen. Contractors, Inc. v. Dir., OWCP, 261 F. App’x 663, 667 (5th Cir. 2008).


Occupational diseases and last responsible employer rule - who pays my DBA benefits?

If the disability is an occupational disease, the Ninth Circuit has held that the responsible employer is the one last exposing the worker to injurious stimuli prior to the date the worker became aware of suffering from the occupational disease. Stevedoring Services of Am. v. Director, 297 F.3d 797, 802 (9th Cir. 2002).
 

What are “occupational disease” cases under the Defense Base Act?

Hearing loss cases, heart attack cases, most PTSD cases, skin diseases, pulmonary diseases, asbestosis, mesothelioma and the like.
Most courts will classify PTSD as an occupational disease under the DBA if multiple events in a war zone lead to you gradually having PTSD symptoms.


Cumulative trauma - natural progression vs.  accelerating or combining

However, in cases where the disability is a result of cumulative traumas, so-called "two-injury" cases, the responsible employer depends upon the cause of the your ultimate disability.
 
If your ultimate disability is the result of the natural progression of the initial injury and would have occurred notwithstanding a subsequent injury, your employer on the date of the initial injury is the responsible employer.
 
However, if your disability is at least partially the result of a subsequent injury aggravating, accelerating or combining with a prior injury to create the ultimate disability, we have held that the employer of the worker at the time of the most recent injury is the responsible, and therefore liable, employer. Found. Constructors, 950 F.2d at 624; Kelaita v. Director, 799 F.2d 1308 (9th Cir. 1986).
 

What body parts are usually associated with cumulative trauma cases?

Most orthopedic injuries, knees, back, neck , shoulder, wrist, hands, feet, etc.
 

The Ninth Circuit and two-injury cases

While it has been suggested that the "last responsible employer" rule is applied differently depending on whether a disability is categorized as an occupational disease or a two-injury case, we have held that cumulative trauma cases are reasonably analyzed as two-injury cases. Kelaita v. Director, 799 F.2d 1311-12 (9th Cir. 1986).

The last responsible employer rule for cumulative trauma (or two injury cases) simplified

Stated differently - the courts are going to determine who is responsible for your two-injury or cumulative trauma case by deciding whether there was “natural progression” or “an aggravation.”
 

Is your current medical condition and your need for medical treatment - the result of a natural progression of your original DBA injury? Or.... Did your subsequent employment (read: your next employment) aggravate or accelerate your prior injury resulting in your current injury and your need for medical treatment?

In a last responsible carrier case, the Seventh Circuit held that “the aggravation rule does not require that a later injury fundamentally alter a prior condition. It is enough that it produces or contributes to a worsening of symptoms.” Marinette Marine Corp. v. OWCP, 431 F.3d 1032, 1035 (Seventh Cir. 2005)


Who has the burden of proving who is the last responsible employer? .... It’s not you

Under the law, once you establish that you have a compensable injury, you aren’t required (meaning you don’t have the burden of proving) which employer is responsible for providing you with DBA benefits.
 
Instead, the burden then shifts to the two employers (or two insurance carriers in a last responsible carrier case) to in essence prove that they are not the last responsible employer (or DBA insurance carrier).
 

How can an employer (or DBA insurance company) prove that they are not the last responsible employer or DBA carrier?

In order to get off the hook, an employer (or DBA insurance carrier) must establish one or of the two:
 
 a. That exposure to the stimuli while you worked for them did not cause your occupational disease, or

 b. you worked for another DBA covered employer after your employment with then and you were exposed to injurious stimuli.
 
For example, in a PTSD case, if you worked for Company One and there were rocket attacks and mortar attacks at the FOB you were assigned and you are able to prove that you have PTSD as a result. The subsequent employer - Company Two, would have to prove that you weren’t expose to traumatic events when you were overseas working for Company Two.


What if my condition is aggravated or accelerated due to work I do when I am home (read: no longer overseas)?

Generally, the last responsible employer rule only applies to what the law calls a “covered employer.” Apportionment of liability between a covered employer and a non-covered employer is not authorized.  Todd Shipyards Corp. v. Black, 717 F.2d 1280, 1286 (Ninth Cir. 1983).
 
Unless the DBA insurance company can show that the DBA employer did not contribute at all to your injury - the DBA insurance company generally can’t weasel out (read: shift liability) to a subsequent (read: later) non-covered employer.
 

The good news about the last responsible employer rule

The good news is that you aren’t going to be stuck trying to apportion your injury, disability payments and medical treatment between two or more employers or insurance carriers. But, it isn’t all good.
 

Why the last responsible employer rule can suck for you

I’m known for telling it like it is. So here goes. This often sucks for you. When two billion dollar DBA insurance companies are pointing to each other and saying the other owes your disability benefits and medical treatment then you’re left in the middle. Not getting the compensation benefits and medical treatment that you are entitled to under the law.
 
So each DBA insurance company goes out and hires a doctor that is going to point to the other insurance company and you can dying on the vine, so to speak.  
 
This is why you need a strategy. So that this either doesn't happen to you or you can settle your case in spite of it all. Of course, no promises here - but you want to be doing everything you can in order to matriculate the ball down the field.  In other words, from a position of relative strength. 
 

What should I do if I have a “last responsible employer” case or a “last responsible carrier” case? ..... You need to take action (a game plan)

Sitting around and feeling bad about your situation is not helpful. What do you need to do?
 
I suggest that you take responsibility for your case. Not to suggest that you don’t immediately hire the best, honest DBA lawyer that you can find. But, don’t expect your lawyer to gather the evidence you need. Instead, get a copy of my book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case and you can help move your case along.
 
Just do it.
 
First, get the evidence needed in order to establish that you have a compensable injury under the Defense Base Act. Evidence that you were injured overseas, medical evidence, wage evidence, emails, contracts, etc. Now would be the time to get you’re stuff together.
 
You need to marshal the evidence (statements, testimony of co-workers) that are going to help you prove your case - see below. 
 
Second, it’s really all in the medical evidence and mostly your supporting testimony. You don’t really care if the first or second DBA insurance carrier is responsible for your disability and/or medical treatment. As long as you’re truthful.  See the example below.
 
Third, file for an telephonic emergency informal conference (TEIC). It’s better to have both employers and their DBA insurance companies in a two employer case or both DBA insurance companies in a last responsible carrier case present at the TEIC.
 
Otherwise, when you get before the Judge, the Judge is probably going to remand your case (send it back down to the Department of Labor) in order to join the other employer/ DBA insurance company. This will further delay your case.
 
Fourth, get recommendations.
 
Fifth, file an LS-18 for a formal hearing (read: trial).
         
Sixth, be ready, willing and able to take your case to trial and win.
 

Where you need to start (with a cumulative trauma case): was there increased pain, a flare-up of pain or a worsening of your condition while you worked for the subsequent (second) employer? 

 
As the court stated in the  Berry Brothers Gen. Contractors case (I discuss this case earlier in this article): was there  increased pain, a flare-up of pain, or a worsening of your condition caused by your work for a subsequent employer?
 
If there was - then there is liability on the part of the second employer and if there wasn’t - then there is liability on the first employer.
 
Again, it doesn’t matter to you. You just want clear medical evidence saying it was one way or the other.
 
Please note that this is stated in the conjunctive. In other words there has to be either increased pain or  flare-up of pain or a worsening of your condition caused by your work for a subsequent employer. Just one of the three. It’s better if there is two of the three or all three.
 
But - the important part is it’s truthful.
 
If you didn’t have any of these - then the responsibility falls on your original employer.
 

A quick example and words of caution

Here is a quick example.
 
You work for Company A and you have a back injury.  You injure your back in a vehicle accident. You return to work at Company B. Both are overseas contractors. In other words they are both covered by the Defense Base Act.
 
While with Company B, your have increased back pain while you wearing body armor. Your back hurts more (read: an increase in pain) when you do lifting. You have pain while you work and when you return to the FOB. You have stiffness at night. Your back pain gets progressively worse until finally, you can’t work anymore and you have to return home.
 
Assuming all of this is true, you need to make sure you tell your doctor all of this and hopefully it is all included in the medical reports.
 
This is all strong evidence that is going to point to the second employer (or carrier) as being responsible for your DBA disability and medical treatment.  Again, if this isn’t true, then - of course - you’re not going to say this.
 

Don’t be afraid of the second “injury” or employer!!! (Don’t walk into a sucker punch)

What I see time and again is folks think that they will be dinged somehow if they are open about the second employment worsening their condition and they try and downplay their experience with their second employer.
 
Not good.
 
You are walking into a quagmire between the two DBA insurance companies. Like walking into a sucker punch. 
 
Just make sure your evidence is truthful. And let the chips fall where they might.
 

What if my pain/ disability is the same since my first injury?

Conversely, if you had the first injury and your condition never got worse. You were the same - always had the same pain and disability since the first injury and while you worked for the second employer and all the way up to today - then that is your truth - go with it.
 
It is what it is.
 
I’m not telling you that you have to pin the tail of the responsibility donkey on the second employer (or DBA insurance carrier). I’m just telling you that if that is the case- fine. Just go with the truth.
 

Where you need to start (with a "occupational disease" case): were you exposed to the harmful stimuli with your last employer?  

Remember, the rules are different for occupational disease cases than they are for cumulative trauma cases. With an occupational disease case the focus is on the harmful stimuli.
 
For example, if you have a hearing loss case - were you exposed to loud noise - such as small arms fire, explosions, loud trucks and the like?  The harmful stimuli is the loud noise. 
 
In a PTSD cases, were you exposed to traumatic events - such as witnessing injury or death, or rocket attacks, missile attacks, IED's and the like? The harmful stimuli is the traumatic event. As I explain in detail in my book - Win Your Defense Base Act Case - the medical term is "stressor." A "stressor" is "an event or events that involve actual or threatened death or serious injury, or a threat to the physical integrity of oneself or others." If you have PTSD (or any DBA case) I strongly suggest you get my book asap. It is the best investment you are going to make to win your DBA case and collect the benefits you deserve.  
 
In a pulmonary injury case, were you exposed to harmful smoke, harmful fumes, harmful gas, etc.?  The harmful stimuli is the harmful fumes, smoke, gas, etc. 
 
So, if you worked for two (or more employers), the last employer where you were exposed to the harmful stimuli is going to be the last responsible employer (or insurance carrier).  
 

Steps you need to take if you have an occupational disease last responsible employer case or last responsible carrier case 

It doesn't usually matter to you who pays your DBA benefits. Remember, this is a battle between two billion dollar insurance companies pointing at each other. Which DBA insurance company pays your DBA benefits is not so important. You getting paid your DBA benefits is what is important. 
 
In other words, you just tell the truth and let the chips fall where they may.
 
The important part is that you make sure your doctors and your testimony is clear about whether you were exposed to harmful stimuli (as I explained above) when you worked for each employer. 
 
For example, if you worked for DBA Contractor A at a FOB in Afghanistan that had regular rocket attacks, mortar attacks, suicide bombers and the like. And you now have PTSD, it is reasonable to conclude that you were exposed to harm stimuli while working for DBA Contractor A .
 
If after that (subsequent to), suppose you worked for DBA Contractor B in Kuwait and you didn't witness any stressors (see above). Then even though DBA Contractor B was your last DBA employer - they are not the "last responsible employer" because you were not exposed to any harmful stimuli while you worked for DBA Contractor B. 
 
Assuming this is the truth, you want to make sure all your doctors know this and you tell them this. You want to make sure that you are consistent with this in your testimony. 
 
Conversely, if you were exposed to any harmful stimuli (read: stressors) while working for DBA Contractor B; you want to make sure that your doctors know this and your testimony is consistent about that also. 
 
Again, you are trying to make a clear record, if possible,  so both DBA insurance companies will know who is responsible for your DBA benefits. 

What if I have a previous injury (an injury before I worked overseas as a civilian contractor)? 

 

Tell your doctor to read this article

If you have trouble explaining this to your doctor - suggest to your doctor that they  read this article.  So they understand what you need. Again, this is all about telling the truth. Whatever your truth is, that is what you need to go with. 

Can you settle your case during the process?

Sure, it can and does happen. But, your DBA case will only get settled if everyone knows that your ready, willing and able to win your case at trial.
 
And it helps if you have strong, truthful evidence pointing to either the first employer/ DBA insurance company or the second employer/ DBA insurance company. That is why you need to be consistent with your testimony and evidence. 
 
Whether you have an occupational disease case or a cumulative trauma case - you need statements and testimony of co-workers that is consistent with who the last responsible employer is (see above). 
 
If you have all of this - it is much easier to settle your case and if you can't settle it - then to win your case at trial. 
 

Not dying on the vine

You need to know that his whole process can take months if not years. DBA cases are slow enough with only one employer or DBA insurance carrier.
 
Last responsible employer cases can tend to drag on because employers or carriers can make you literally, go back to the starting line (read: getting informal conference recommendations) by “joining” another employer and/or DBA insurance carrier.
 
You are trying to go as fast as possible, but even if you get a trial set, then take your case to trial, in many instances you will wait 6-9 months or longer for your Judge to issue a Decision and Order. Not to mention the Appeals and such.
 
Hey, I know that most DBA lawyers aren’t telling you this. But you need to know what you may be up against.
 
This is why you need to be doing everything you can to help gather the evidence needed to get your case resolved a quickly as possible.
 
 
Call us at 619-304-1000  - If you call after regular business hours, when you leave a message, be sure to repeat your name and telephone number twice, so we get it correctly. And be sure to indicate whether it's okay if we respond by text.
 
Text us at 858-281-8008 - Be sure and put "new DBA case" in your text.
 
Or leave us a message on this webpage
 
 
 
 
This article isn't legal advice
 
These discussions and/or examples are not legal advice. All legal situations are different. These testimonials, endorsements, photos and/or discussions do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, your particular case/ situation. Every case is different. There are any number of reasons why Defense Base Act cases are not won and/or are not as successful as one might hope.
 
Just because we have gotten great results in so many other Defense Base Act cases, doesn't guarantee in particular result in other cases. Including, your case. Every case is different. In other words, your mileage may vary.
William Turley
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