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WINNING RESULTS: Cross-Examination Results in PTSD Claim Dismissed

The claimant is a 43-year-old gentleman who was born on September 17, 1979. This matter is established for injuries to the claimant’s neck, back, right shoulder, and right wrist. The claimant eventually came under the care of Dr. Robins and at a hearing, the Law Judge found prima facie medical evidence for major depressive disorder.

LOIS attorney, Marigold Bridgeman, requested the deposition of Dr. Robins on the issue of causal relationship. Dr. Robins was deposed on direct testimony diagnosed not only major depressive disorder but PTSD asserting the claimant reported symptoms of flashbacks to the accident, nightmares and avoidance of stimuli, where the mechanism of injury was merely lifting a heavy bucket, clearly not a traumatic event. During cross examination, the criteria of the DSM-V was reviewed when questioning Dr. Robins and obtained the concession that the symptoms listed on the report were self-reported.

A psychological IME was conducted which noted that the claimant “appeared to be simulating pathology”. A clear indication the claimant is malingering and not credible.

At a recent hearing, the claimant requested the claim be amended to include major depressive disorder and PTSD. The Law Judge agreed that both Dr. Robins and the claimant were not credible based on the self-reported symptoms given the mechanism of injury and Dr. Robins’ reliance on the antiquated Rorschach. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Law Judge disallowed the claim for PTSD and major depressive disorder and continued to find a mild disability.

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We represent insurance carriers, self-insured employers, third party claim administrators, and employers before the New York State Workers' Compensation Board. We handle cases from cradle-to-grave. We want to be by your side, moving cases aggressively to closure from the start of litigation all the way through to settlement.

We only assign one attorney and one paralegal to each case. This means that your team members always have one contact to go to for any questions. We do not have 'hearing attorney' or a 'negotiation attorney' or 'appeal department' or anything else! All of our attorneys handle all of those roles – meaning cases are not 'passed around' as they move through the litigation process. Your risk professional or adjuster always knows who is assigned – because the attorney does not change.

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