On Saturday May 20th, Managing Partner Sam Pond, Partner Jerry Lehocky, and Client Advocate & Resident Nurse Maribeth Altiere were featured on Saturday Night Live with Philly Labor Radio for a special segment on injured workers.
Sam started the show off by discussing the current state of workers’ compensation in Pennsylvania and highlighting the fact that insurance companies deny 4 out of 5 claims.
“They want to take away the keys to the courthouse for injured individuals in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania—starting with House Bill 18,” Sam said. With much of an injured worker’s case depending on objective medical evidence being available, legislation like House Bill 18 would strip workers of any defense they have from exploitation by insurance companies.
Jerry explained that the protection offered by workers’ compensation benefits is dangling from a political string which is controlled by Harrisburg. He elucidated that over the last few cycles in Pennsylvania, the string is getting thinner and thinner.
He also commented on House Bill 18, explaining in depth its deceptive nature.
“House Bill 18 is bait and switch—it’s a pure marketing ploy on behalf of Sam Marshall who’s marketing this, who is jumping on this opioid epidemic that we’re reading articles about all the time,” said Jerry. “House Bill 18—the substance of it—has nothing to do with opioids and injured workers. It’s designed to take away, once again, more rights that the injured workers gave up and got back in 1915 when the Workers’ Compensation Act was passed.”
Following Jerry was a call-in from Maribeth Altiere—a Client Advocate and Registered Nurse at Pond Lehocky Stern Giordano, as well as a former client. Maribeth offers support to injured workers during the medical process of their case—which she recalled being very stressful and intimidating. Work injuries are not predictable, and are not easy to deal with—they can take emotional and financial tolls on the individual hurt as well as entire families, she explained.
“People that are injured at work should seek help early on, don’t wait,” Maribeth said.
Click here to listen to the full podcast of Saturday Night Live with Philly Labor Radio.