Leo H. Hernandez
Attorney at Law
Helping California’s injured workers since 1982.
© 2015 Leo H. Hernandez, Attorney at Law
Contact: 3330 Pico Blvd. Suite 2308 Santa Monica, CA 90405   (310) 452-1441 Fax: (310) 452-2075  
Hours of Operation  Mondays - Thursdays: 8:30 am - 5:30 pm  Fridays: 8 am - 5 pm  
The Nature of Workers’ Compensation Workers’ Compensation proceedings, unlike damages for personal injury claims, are heard and determined by a Workers’ Compensation Judge. There is no jury trial. Awards are based on a percentage of Permanent Disability (PD) as determined by the doctors assigned to your case and the current law.  
Working With Us                                        If we take your case, the employer’s insurance company and our office will send you to various doctors that specialize in treating your specific conditions. It is critical that you go to your doctor’s appointments. They will act as proof for your claim and they will provide you with the care you need. Your case cannot proceed if you do not go to these appointments. Follow all medical advice and work restrictions prescribed to you by your doctor.
What to Do if You’re Injured on the Job 1. First, notify your employer. They are required to provide you with medical treatment pertaining to your injury. You may be sent to one of their preferred doctors or clinics (called MPN, for Medical Provider Network). 2. Your employer must also give you a form called DWC-1 within one working day of the reported injury. You must fill it out and sign it. It is essentially a report of the injury and includes details like date of injury, type of injury, occupation, etc. 3. Follow the doctor’s instructions and make sure that the employer knows of any work restrictions the doctor may note. If the doctor puts you on disability, make sure your employer is aware of this. 4. Often times the treatment provided by the employer is not enough. If the pain persists, give us a call at (310) 452-1441. From there we can make an appointment to meet with the attorney and file a claim for workers’ compensation benefits.  
Cumulative Trauma                                    Sometimes an injury or illness takes a while to manifest and may be the result of repeated trauma accumulated over many years. An example of this may be back pain from years of bending over and carrying heavy tools. So while there wasn’t an exact accident that brought forth the pain, it is still a result of working with heavy materials at your workplace. There are many other examples of cumulative trauma, and the injuries are not only limited to back pain. They could be also diseases as well, such as cancers from working with asbestos and other toxic materials.
Your Rights Your employer is legally required to provide you with medical care for your work related injury. You also have the right to get an attorney. Receiving medical care from your employer does not waive this right.
Depression and Anxiety                              Depression and anxiety are two types of illnesses that are sometimes hard to see because they occur within the brain. They can sometimes manifest themselves physiologically as well, and you must go to a doctor to get a diagnosis. They can occur from working a high tension job or from working in unsafe conditions. Frequently injured workers become depressed and need medical help following their injury. This is either due to loss of their ability to do things they used to enjoy because of their injury, or their inability to provide for themselves and their family. Workers’ Compensation law covers mental illnesses just as it does physical illnesses. You will be given appropriate medical care from a licensed psychiatrist. 
NOTICE Making a false or fraudulent workers’ compensation claim is a felony subject to up to 5 years in prison or a fine of up to $50,000 or double the value of the fraud, whichever is greater, or by both imprisonment and fine.  
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