Reopening an SLU
If a claimant resolves his or her claim via Schedule Loss of Use, and the medical condition changes, the claimant may be entitled to reopen his or her claim. In order to be able to reopen the case, the claimant must show a change in condition. The claimant can do this by having his or her doctor complete and submit a C-27 form. This form should explain how the condition has worsened over time. If the claimant reopens the case by demonstrating a change in condition, the claimant is entitled to both: medical treatment and indemnity benefits. The claimant may reopen the claim, however monies will NOT move to claimant (even if out of work) until credit of prior awards is exhausted.
SLU v. PPD
Even if the claimant's injuries are to a schedulable site of injury, the claimant's condition may be amenable to a non-scheduled award. This means that, even if the claimant's injury is to the arm, if the injury is severe enough and is the sole reason the claimant is unable to work, the claimant may be entitled to classification. The claimant's doctors must write a report to this effect. The claimant may also be entitled to this type of benefit if he or she is found to have an SLU of over 50% to an arm, a leg, a foot or a hand. A doctor's report showing that the claimant's workers' compensation disability is the sole reason the claimant is unable to return to work is still necessary.
**This information is based on New York State. Each state may be different. This blog post is for informational purposes. Your specific circumstances may vary from the information provided. Every case is different. Prior results do not guarantee future outcomes. The contents contained in this post do not establish an attorney-client relationship. Please contact us before sending confidential or time-sensitive material**