WELCOME TO THE DBA NEWSLETTER, PREPARED BY BARNETT, LERNER, KARSEN & FRANKEL, P.A. WE HOPE THIS WILL HELP YOU LEARN MORE ABOUT THE DEFENSE BASE ACT AND YOUR LEGAL RIGHTS.
REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR SUBSEQUENT INCOME
Brian C. Karsen, Esq.
Under the Longshore and Defense Base Acts, the insurance company is provided with a means to inquire into a Claimant’s earnings after to the onset of a disabling condition. The insurance carrier will provide the Claimant with Department of Labor Form LS-200, otherwise known as a “Report of Earnings” form. This form requires the individual to report any earnings within a specific period as referenced on the form. However, questions often arise regarding what constitutes income. The form requires a Claimant to provide evidence of any income, including from self-employment or unemployment benefits. Even if a self-employment business or operation is not turning a profit, a Claimant must still report all revenue from the business. Questions regarding any specific income or revenue generated will be addressed accordingly. It is important that these forms be completed fully and truthfully. A Claimant can forfeit his or her right to compensation for the period indicated on the form if any earnings, including self-employment income, are knowingly and wilfully left out. Each completed form should also include paystubs, tax returns, etc., as supporting documentation. Any questions concerning what should be reported on the form should be addressed with your attorney.
WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW
Samuel S. Frankel, Jr., Esq.
Many people believe that once they hire an attorney, they do not have to do anything else in their case. This simply is not true. As Mr. Karsen set forth in his article above, one of the many responsibilities of injured workers is to periodically report their earnings to the insurance company, regardless of whether they actually have any earning, or if the insurance company has accepted the claim.
You obligation as a Claimant and our client also requires you to keep our office informed of any changes in your condition or lifestyle. It is our job to help fix problems that may occur in your claim; however, we cannot fix something we do not know is a problem. Remember, the insurance company, or its attorney, may not always tell us what is going on in your claim. It is always up to you to keep us informed.
Some of the things you should always tell us are when you start or stop a job, start or stop receiving a salary or compensation benefits, see a doctor for your injuries, get a referral or prescription from your doctor, have any reimbursements that need to be processed (including mileage from your home to your doctor), move to a new location, get a new telephone number or email address, get married, divorced, or have children, are involved in any injuries or accidents after your claim, or are involved in any legal matters other than your claim. All of this information is important, and may impact your entitlement to certain benefits in the past or moving forward into the future.
If your claim is referred to the Office of Administrative Law Judges for trial, you will have to produce most of this information as answers to discovery requests. We should always be the first people to learn about a change in your circumstances – not the last. This ensures we file the appropriate claims with the Department of Labor, and do not spend time or resources litigating an issue that does not exist, has already been resolved, or can be resolved with a simple telephone call.
This is your claim. While our goal is to facilitate a speedy and satisfactory resolution of issues that may occur during your claim, you are our partner, and we rely on you to help us achieve our goals. It is always better to let us know something, even if it may ultimately be irrelevant, than not tell us anything at all. Our office can be contacted by telephone, email, facsimile, or post to make communication as convenient as possible.
Barnett, Lerner, Karsen & Frankel, P.A.
2860 Marina Mile Blvd., Suite 105
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33312
(954) 920-9492 facsimile
(888) 732-7425 U.S. Toll Free
Offices in Fort Lauderdale, FL and Washington, D.C.
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