2023 Work Comp, Casualty & Risk Management Conference
Opening Keynote: Who Cares? Mental Health, Long-Term Care, Chronic Pain, and the Opioid Epidemic
Dwayne Akins , Marsh
Chandra Vedak, MD, Horizons Behavioral Health
Ya'Sheaka Williams, Quintairos, Prieto, Wood & Boyer, P.A.
Mental health components in claims are trending at a larger number when treating chronic pain, depression, and long-term care. Participants will be asked to consider the impact/implications for the industry. Additionally, this panel will touch on how chronic pain treatment has contributed to the increased use and prescription of opioid medications, contributing to the opioid epidemic and whether an employer's workers compensation program should address the crisis.Back to top
Session 1 - It’s Your Fault, Now What? Settling and Litigating Clear Liability Claims
Sidney Degan, III, Degan, Blanchard & Nash
Michael Gilmartin, Berkley Program Specialists
Daniel Karp, Fee, Smith, & Sharp, LLP
Grace Regan, Hiscox
Seasoned professionals offer advice on achieving the best possible outcomes for clear liability cases and share solutions for helping reduce settlements. With clear liability cases, damages can be kept low or allowed to bloom based on decisions made surrounding employee actions, acceptance of liability subsequent actions, contact with claimants, admission of fault, knowing your venue, retaining pre-litigation counsel, and not being scared to get out in front.Back to top
Session 1 - Crash Course: Increasing Vehicular Collisions in a Post-Pandemic World
Following COVID-19, motor vehicle collisions have been rising at an exponential rate – both in numbers and in severity – many of them avoidable accidents. Looking at the issue from a variety of vantage points, the panel will provide an analysis of potential causes for this increase, discuss ways to mitigate current risks, and offer programs/ideas to get out in front of these collisions.Back to top
Session 1 - Navigating Downstream Waters: Effective Additional Insured and Contractual Risk Transfer Strategies
Cynthia Garcia, Bernards
Cheryl Kozdrey, Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C.
Patrick O'Connor, The Walsh Group
Trevor Resurreccion, Lynberg & Watkins
Don't miss this session focused on risk management challenges and solutions related to indemnification and additional insured issues, including best practices for handling defense, coverage, and common contract provisions. This diverse panel of an in-house risk manager, defense counsel, coverage counsel, and a broker claims executive will share both real life examples and case law to convey a broad range of perspectives. Attendees will walk away with actionable ideas for a better approach to resolution of claims, in construction and across other industries.Back to top
Session 1 - Proceed with Caution: Evidence Preservation and Spoliation 101
Carly Falgout, Bear Mediation
Niva Harney, Kennedys
Nicholas Spear, Markel Service, Incorporated
Cade Williams, Marriott Vacations Worldwide Corporation
Claim professionals handling premises liability claims are often face with making sticky decisions regarding evidence preservation. In this roundtable, experienced professionals will discuss how to avoid turning a trip and fall into a spoliation claim by exploring the basics of evidence preservation and spoilation, looking specifically at how it all works in the real world where things are not always so open and obvious.Back to top
Session 1 - Strategies in Effectuating Medicare Conditional Payment Lien Outcomes: Proactive Cost-Saving Tools for Settlements
Jonathan Gerdes, Frank Crum Insurance
Joseph Gustavsen, NLC Insurance Companies
Sarannah McMurtry, Acceptance Insurance
Heather Sanderson, Sanderson Firm PLLC
This presentation addresses all aspects of Medicare conditional payments – not only for traditional Medicare recoveries, but for private Medicare plans (Medicare Advantage Plans & Prescription Drug Plans) as well. The audience will learn about traditional and private Medicare recovery rights, options for disputes and appeals, double-damage recovery, and trending case law regarding Medicare conditional payments.Back to top
Session 1 - The Ethics in Claims Handling
Brenda Chitty, Illinois Casualty Company
Michelle Greene, North American Risk Services NARS
Yvonne Hill-Planter, Skyward Specialty Insurance
G. Steven Murdock, IFMK Law, Ltd.
In this interactive discussion, we review five pillars of ethics in claims handling and consider why ethics are so important in our industry and how to preserve ethical behavior in your dealings as a claims professional. Attendees will leave with an understanding of the Unfair Claims Practices Act, conflicts of interest, and proper codes of professionalism.Back to top
Session 2 - A New Frontier: Remote Work and Workers Compensation Claims
Jennifer Cogbill, Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc.
Angela Fowler, American Residential Services, LLC
Amber Grambo, GuideOne Insurance Co.
Katie Grove, McAngus Goudelock & Courie, LLC (MGC)
Michael Milstein, Downey & Lenkov LLC
Mark Phillips, Amerisure Mutual Insurance Company
The post-pandemic rise in the remote workforce raises plenty of related workers compensation issues and new considerations. This roundtable discussion will look at the implications on liability and risk management, especially in handling of workers compensation claims, various aspects of risk management and claims handling for remote injuries, including prevention, investigation, and a case law review. Panelists also will address how the shift to more virtual work settings provides an opportunity to reduce costs and risks and discuss the potential advantages and downsides to a more hybrid work model – both for the employee and the employer.Back to top
Session 2 - Be Smart: Current Trends in Homeowners Liability Coverage
Look at the expansion of liability coverage on homeowners policies considering the increasing exposures posed by technological advances and applicable emerging issues affecting personal liability. Explore State and Federal laws where interpretation of policy language has been broadened for exposures posed by drones, ride and house sharing, cyber-bullying, and vicarious liability for unlicensed individuals.Back to top
Session 2 - No Laughing Matter: Civil Money Penalties and Conditional Payment Recoveries in Medicare Workers Comp Claims
Rafael Gonzalez, Cattie & Gonzalez
Gina Jacobs, Hamilton, Miller & Birthisel LLP
Kathleen Wyeth, AF Group
With hundreds of thousands of dollars per claim potentially on the line, this session will provide the details regarding what Medicare’s civil money penalties (CMP) structural and procedural framework will look like, including details on when Medicare will/will not impose CMPs. Presenters will also share insights into how serious Medicare is about recovering conditional payments, including a statistical analysis and an update on the resolution process.Back to top
Session 2 - Top Leadership Tips from Women in Risk Management, Retail, and Workers Comp Litigation
Jeannette Johnian, Falls Lake Insurance Company
Annette LaBarre, Mitsui Sumitomo Marine Management (U.S.A.), Inc. (MSIG)
Jennifer Morris Jones, Cranfill Sumner LLP
Caryn Siebert, Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc.
While great strides had been made toward promotion of diversity and inclusion in the work claims industry prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, a major economic impact concern coming out of the pandemic is the widening gender disparity in the labor market. Top leaders in their fields will discuss lessons learned regarding leading through transition (and beyond) for successful approaches to claims handling and tips on the technology of change, also vital toward enhancement of professional competence in the workers compensation space and success in the retail industry.
This session does not qualify for CE credit in Georgia or Texas.
Session 2 - When a Tree Falls in the Forest… Does It Have a Claim?
Jay Gates CPCU,ARM, AIC , Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.
Lara Pearson, Culver Franchising System, LLC
Patrick Sodoro, Sodoro Law Group
This roundtable will include a rundown of strategies and procedures for employers to use at the outset of an unwitnessed workers compensation claim, including how to prepare and provide defense counsel with what they need to prevail.Back to top
Session 3 - Avoiding the Concurrent Proximate Cause Trap
Ziad Abdella, Philadelphia Insurance Companies
Patrick Kenny, Armstrong Teasdale LLP
Douglas Richmond, Aon
The ability to recognize and properly respond to claims involving concurrent proximate cause doctrine is essential for retail, restaurant, and hospitality claims handling. This session will demystify the doctrine, assist claim handlers in recognizing when it might apply, and provide suggestions to insurers for avoiding the concurrent proximate cause trap.Back to top
Session 3 - Balancing the Budget: Managing Case Costs for All Sizes of Litigation
Allyson Byrd, McGlinchey Stafford, PLLC
Lauren Navarro, Dentons
Hillary Price, Construction Risk Partners
Robin Roeder, Sedgwick
Managing litigation costs is important for all sizes of litigation. This discussion will cover how planning your litigation strategy early can keep costs down while still effectively advocating for your client.Back to top
Session 3 - Don’t Go in Blind: Defending Unwitnessed Workers Compensation Cases
Kate Claudio, Strategic Comp
Alicia Hitchcock, Elwood Staffing Services, Inc
Kirsten Kaiser Kus, Downey & Lenkov LLC
Ben Kincheloe, Albanese Confectionery Group Inc
When confronted with unwitnessed, red flag, questionable claims, what should you do? This panel of experts will cover the best approach to these tricky claims from all angles, the importance of early, prompt investigation, and take a look at what should be done immediately upon report from the employer, carrier, and defense counsel standpoints.Back to top
Session 3 - In It to Win It: Effectively Dealing with Plaintiff Side Counsel in Employment Law Matters
Robert Bernstein, Laner Muchin, Ltd.
Carrie Graziani, Hanover Insurance
Pandora Pounds, Berkley Select
Mary Smigielski, Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, LLP
Achieving successful results in employment law matters depends on a variety of factors, one of the most important can be defense counsel’s relationship with opposing counsel, including their ability to thwart or control the tactics of opposing counsel. Led by seasoned defense-side employment attorneys and claim professionals, we’ll explore practical guidance/tips for effectively dealing with opposing counsel in employment law matters, with an eye toward achieving the best possible results for defendants/insured.Back to top
Session 3 - The Defense and Litigation of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Claims
Lizzy Adkins CLMP, Crawford & Company
Nate Lindsey, Rasmussen Dickey Moore, LLC
Steve Tuller, DecisionQuest
Kenneth Williams, Segal McCambridge Singer & Mahoney, Ltd.
The discussion will explore initial diagnosis through expert selection, and breaking down the defense and litigation of traumatic brain injury (TBI) claims. The panel will also discuss TBI and how to review the records associated with a claim, review the selection of experts, and recommend best practices in handling those TBI claims.Back to top
Session 4 - One Less Workers Compensation Zombie in the Apocalypse
Kiersten Cash, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Jeff Marshall , Self Employed
Francis X. Wickersham, Marshall Dennehey
From opioids to benzodiazepines to medical cannabis, workers compensation historically relies too heavily on the long-term prescribing of medication that takes perfectly functioning workers and turns them into...well...zombies. Join industry experts as they explore an alternative solution and the legal strategies that are succeeding in changing the "stoner" culture of workers compensation.Back to top
Session 4 - Safely Traversing the Minefield of Permanent Work Restrictions
Companies, after providing medical care and temporary disability payments to an injured worker, are too often faced with the additional challenges posed when that person is left with permanent restrictions resulting from their work injury. This roundtable will discuss the obligations of the claims professionals in those situations, including effective strategies to minimize exposure and achieve file closure in a timely and cost-effective manner.Back to top
Session 4 - Stay Sharp: Subrogation Should Not Be an Afterthought
Did you know subrogation is one of the top three ways insurance companies make money? Attendees will come away from this session armed with facts on how subrogation impacts companies and individuals, history on the concept and its evolution, and a better understanding of when subrogation should be considered in claims management.Back to top
Session 4 - Top Ten: A Claims File Wish List
Claire Muselman, Self Employed
Stephanie Neuenfeldt, Employers Mutual Casualty Company
James M. Poerio, Poerio & Walter, Inc.
Brian Sumner, German Gallagher & Murtagh PC
Attorneys and claims professionals come together for a roundtable discussion to share their top ten list of the information and documents counsel is looking for to help best formulate a litigation plan and develop a winning defense for a new claim.Back to top
Session 5 - Cocktails and Catastrophes: Grey and Contentious Issues in Preparing a Complex Business Interruption (BI) Claim
Presenters will look at examples of actual loss engagement to help identify best practices in managing complex business interruption claims, understand the complexities of a cyber incident, and advise on how to move a grey and contentious claim to a fair settlement. The session will cover the importance of pre-loss preparation, accurate BI values, understanding critical extension of coverages, key strategies to get a claim settled timely, and how to cooperatively work through calculation differences with insurance company’s forensic accountants.Back to top
Session 5 - Exposure and Expense: Managing Workers Compensation Claims from a Cost-Saving Perspective
Jynnifer Cotharn , IFMK Law, Ltd.
Brad Gronke, Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc.
Jared Renfroe, Spicer Rudstrom, PLLC
Join us as we discuss cost drivers and money saving tips at each phase of workers compensation claims handling, identify cost saving strategies beginning with preventive measures and effective expense management throughout investigation, litigation, and settlement, and look at traps and detours that can impact the bottom line.Back to top
Session 5 - Holding vs. Folding: How to Play Your Workers Compensation Hand
Michelle Beil, Encova Insurance
Timothy Furman, Downey & Lenkov LLC
Ursula Pickett, Kenco PPC
When it comes to claims handling, the most successful players are intelligent and strategic, approaching each claim individually, looking at all factors to determine the definition of a successful outcome. A good hand isn’t always judged by the player that wins, the smartest move may be to go all in, but it could just as easily be to fold before wasting too much money when your hand doesn’t stand a chance.
This panel will discuss how they implement individualistic approaches to all phases of workers compensation claims handling, how they define a victory and how this term differs from claim to claim. In addition, they will explore how their different points of view and cohesive approach effectuate consistent quality outcomes.
Session 5 - Set Up for Success: Investigation and Implementation of Subrogation Claims
Griffin Gross, Matthiesen, Wickert & Lehrer, S.C.
Ashton Kirsch, Matthiesen, Wickert & Lehrer, S.C.
Patti Rutzinski, SECURA Insurance Company
Look at the nuts and bolts of investigating workers compensation losses, especially how/when to focus on issues like product liability, borrowed servant, warranty, evidentiary, and contractual issues to help substantiate subrogation claims. This session will help the subrogation professional, or vendor, effectively investigate work-related injuries at the most critical stage of a workers compensation subrogation claim.Back to top
Session 6 - Cha-cha-change: What Workplace Demographic Changes May Bring
Amanda Alexander, Quintairos, Prieto, Wood & Boyer, P.A.
Shantel Dixon, Markel Service, Incorporated
Sabrina Mitchell, PMA Companies
The workforce includes younger and sometimes more inexperienced workers, along with aging workers facing retirement; some employees are looking only for remote work or are willing to work in a hybrid model. Additionally, some workers are looking for assignment work, or are looking for employment that is fulfilling, while others are looking for short term or contract work. Join us as we look at how all this change impacts employers and the workers compensation system.Back to top
Session 6 - Creative Thinking: Solutions to Help You Settle and Save
Maxwell Brusky, Bulkmatic Transport
Don Engels, Jr., Ringler
Daniel Misheck, Employers Mutual Casualty Company
Brett Olson, Starr Indemnity & Liability Company
Heather Thomas, Hall & Evans, L.L.C.
With the extraordinary rise in interest rates, structured settlements are once again a useful settlement tool. Participants will gain knowledge of structured settlement best practices both pre and post settlement. This information will help you settle claims and protect your client. In addition, participants will learn powerful strategies on how Defendants can leverage plaintiff tax strategies (such as structured settlements, among others) to help settle tough claims.
You don't want to miss this session!
Session 6 - Where Do We Go from Here? Securing a Better Venue for Cases
Julio E. Martinez, Gilson Daub
Scott Ruksakiati , Tyson & Mendes LLP
Caryn Siebert, Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc.
It is not unusual for claims professionals to feel overwhelmed when discussing venue selection with their defense attorneys. This session will cover the importance of venue selection, explains the methods for changing venue, and shares other crucial information related to venue selection. Attendees will leave with an understanding of the many issues related to venue selection and strategies to discuss with their defense counsel to ensure their cases are litigated in the most equitable venue for a fair outcome.Back to top
No Learning Objectives Available