If you read my blog, you know that I get really frustrated by attorneys who do not look out for their clients.
The latest nominee for the worst workers’ compensation law firm in Chicago comes from a recent caller to my office.
She hurt her back while working a couple of years ago and hired an attorney. That lawyer directed her to treat medically with a buddy of his. I can only assume they have a tit for tat type relationship where they refer each other patients/clients.
Her back injury was serious enough that she had to see an orthopedic doctor and have surgery. Her lawyer also told her to keep on seeing his buddy.
She’s better now and the insurance company and the attorney agree that the case is worth $75,000.00. Problem is that the buddy doctor ran up a huge bill (over $30,000.00) that the insurance company doesn’t want to pay. They are right to not pay it because the treatment wasn’t reasonable or necessary. The real doctor (the orthopedic) also ordered physical therapy which the insurance company did pay for.
Now this lawyer is not looking out for his client, but instead his buddy. He’s telling her that the buddy will get paid out of the settlement. That’s complete and utter nonsense.
This attorney is a scumbag and so is this doctor. His “treatment” appears to be a lot of massage therapy and ice packs. It’s one of those doctor owned facilities that has tons of people in them and while they are technically supervised by a doctor, low paid staff provides all of this “therapy.” They are used to not getting paid most of their bill, but it’s still a windfall for them. It would be hitting the lottery if this attorney can convince his client to accept a settlement where most of the money goes to the doctor.
It’s OK for an attorney to suggest a medical provider for you if you don’t have one. It’s not alright for them to insist you see a certain doctor and the treatment should have stopped once she began seeing the orthopedic surgeon.
I don’t blame the injured worker although I do think she should have questioned this whole arrangement, especially when she was getting the phony treatment along with the real physical therapy.
An attorney should look out for you. While everyone in our state wide network does do that, not all lawyers do. Because of that, you have to look out for you as well. And if your lawyer insists that you treat with a certain medical office, get a new attorney as fast as you can. Those types of lawyers only lead to disaster.