With the recent economic downturn, employers have increased their focus on controlling costs to remain competitive. Controlling workers' compensation costs is no exception. While the goal is simply stated, acheiving it remains a challenging task. That is because it often requires a combination of legal and technical expertise, along with a lot of practical experience to effectively manage workers' compensation claims.
Most employers either utilize a paralegal/consultant, or a lawyer. At Stringer LLP, we utilize both. To deal with the day to issues, we have two paralegals who specialize in this area, one of whom is also a certified safety specialist with over 20 years experience in assisting clients in managing their workers' compensation claims and dealing with the workers' compensation board. We also have two lawyers with considerable expertise in this area. One previously worked for a workers' compensation board in a policy making capacity and was retained to represent a board in all of its judicial review matters. Another is one of the leading occupational health and safety lawyers in Canada. Together, as a team, we help our clients manage every aspect of WSIB claims management and OH&S compliance (which in our view go hand in hand). Some of the specific issues within this practice area that we have assisted clients with are as follows:
- WSIB claims management, from filing the forms, to dealing with the maze of workers' compensation personnel;
- Making representations (verbal and written) to claims adjudicators and presenting appeals at the Board's Appeals Branch and Appeals Tribunal;
- Assisting clients in responding to Workwell Audits;
- OH&S training (management, supervisors and employees) and legal compliance analysis;
- OH&S policy review and development;
- Review and development of contractor management programs;
- Accident investigation and reporting (including preparation of mandatory ministry forms while preserving your interests); and
- Appealing Ministry of Labour OH&S orders and representing employers charged under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
Please contact anyone from our team for assistance.