Rehiring After a Workers’ Compensation Claim

Read­ing Time: 2 min­utes

Rehiring After a Workers’ Compensation Claim: Understanding Your Options and the New Rules

Injured work­ers in Ore­gon ! You now have more con­trol over your reem­ploy­ment rights thanks to House Bill 3471, which changed the game regard­ing “no-rehire” pro­vi­sions in work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion settlements.

But before we break it down, let’s talk about rehire rights: The abil­i­ty to regain your job or a sim­i­lar posi­tion with your employ­er after a work-relat­ed injury. These rights are cru­cial for your finan­cial secu­ri­ty and career stability.

The Old Way (Not So Great):

Tra­di­tion­al­ly, set­tle­ment agree­ments often includ­ed “no-rehire” claus­es, essen­tial­ly bar­ring you from ever work­ing for your employ­er again. This could severe­ly lim­it your job oppor­tu­ni­ties, espe­cial­ly if you had spe­cial­ized skills or a long tenure with the company.

The New Way (Much Better):

HB 3471 pro­hibits employ­ers from mak­ing set­tle­ment offers con­tin­gent on accept­ing a no-rehire clause. You now have the free­dom to choose!

Here’s the Breakdown for Rehire After Injury:

Pros of includ­ing a no-rehire clause:

  • Larg­er set­tle­ment: Employ­ers might offer more mon­ey in exchange for agree­ing not to return.
  • Clo­sure: For some, a defin­i­tive end to the rela­tion­ship might be desired.

Cons of includ­ing a no-rehire clause:

  • Lim­it­ed future oppor­tu­ni­ties: You could miss out on pro­mo­tions, re-employ­ment, or return­ing to your old job if cir­cum­stances change.
  • Reduced earn­ing poten­tial: This could impact your long-term finan­cial stability.
  • Poten­tial dis­crim­i­na­tion: Agree­ing to no-rehire might raise con­cerns about unfair treat­ment in future applications.

Important Reminders:

  • You can­not be pres­sured into accept­ing a no-rehire clause. The offer must clear­ly state if set­tle­ment is con­di­tion­al on it.
  • You can nego­ti­ate: Dis­cuss set­tle­ment amounts with­out the no-rehire clause and see if it’s feasible.
  • Seek legal advice: An employ­ment attor­ney can explain your rights and guide you through the process.

So, should You Sign a No-Rehire Clause?

It depends entire­ly on your indi­vid­ual cir­cum­stances and pri­or­i­ties. Con­sid­er fac­tors like:

  • Sever­i­ty of your injury: Will it affect your abil­i­ty to per­form your pre­vi­ous job?
  • Future career plans: Do you see your­self stay­ing with the com­pa­ny long-term?
  • Finan­cial needs: Does the increased set­tle­ment out­weigh poten­tial future earnings?
  • Rela­tion­ship with employ­er: Do you feel com­fort­able return­ing after the incident?

Remem­ber, you have the right to choose. Don’t let pres­sure or mis­in­for­ma­tion sway your deci­sion. Weigh the pros and cons care­ful­ly, and seek pro­fes­sion­al guid­ance if needed.

Addi­tion­al Resources:

  • Ore­gon Depart­ment of Con­sumer and Business Ser­vices: https://wcd.oregon.gov/
  • Nation­al Con­fer­ence of State Leg­is­la­tures (NCSL): This web­site tracks state-lev­el leg­is­la­tion and has a data­base on work­er’s com­pen­sa­tion laws. You can search by key­word or top­ic to see if oth­er states have intro­duced or passed sim­i­lar bills relat­ed to no-rehire provisions.
  • The Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion Research Insti­tute (WCRI): This orga­ni­za­tion pub­lish­es research and reports on top­ics relat­ed to work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion, includ­ing leg­isla­tive trends. You can browse their pub­li­ca­tions or search for spe­cif­ic infor­ma­tion on no-rehire provisions.

Empow­er your­self with knowl­edge and make informed choic­es about your rehire rights! You deserve a fair set­tle­ment and a future filled with opportunity.


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Independent Contractor and Injury Compensation

Read­ing Time: 2 min­utes

Gig Economy Gears Shift: New Rule Revamps Classification, with Potential Impact on Injury Compensation

Brace for a major over­haul in the gig econ­o­my as the U.S. Depart­ment of Labor’s (DOL) new inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor rule tight­ens the screws on mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion. Effec­tive March 11th, 2024, this game-chang­er could sig­nif­i­cant­ly impact work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion for injury-relat­ed cas­es across indus­tries like health­care, con­struc­tion, and the ever-expand­ing realm of plat­forms like Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash.

Who is an Employee?

At the heart of the issue lies the thorny ques­tion: who’s an employ­ee and who’s an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor? The new rule replaces the old one-dimen­sion­al focus on con­trol and profit/loss with a nuanced, six-pronged test. This mul­ti­fac­tor analy­sis delves deep­er, metic­u­lous­ly examining:

  1. Con­trol over work: How much say does the work­er have in tasks, sched­ules, and procedures?
  2. Invest­ment in resources: Does the work­er pro­vide their own tools, equip­ment, or materials?
  3. Per­ma­nence of the rela­tion­ship: Is the work ongo­ing or spo­radic? Is there an expec­ta­tion of con­tin­ued engagement?
  4. Skill and ini­tia­tive: Does the work­er rely on spe­cial­ized skills or inde­pen­dent deci­sion-mak­ing, or do they fol­low spe­cif­ic instructions?
  5. Poten­tial for prof­it or loss: Can the work­er direct­ly influ­ence their earn­ings through per­for­mance or effort?
  6. Eco­nom­ic depen­dence: Does the work­er rely pri­mar­i­ly on this income source, or do they have oth­er avenues for finan­cial stability?

This over­haul aims to com­bat wide­spread mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion, which often leaves work­ers vul­ner­a­ble and deprived of cru­cial rights, includ­ing access to work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion for job-relat­ed injuries.

Act­ing Sec­re­tary Julie Su empha­sizes the rule’s poten­tial to empow­er vul­ner­a­ble work­ers, ensur­ing prop­er clas­si­fi­ca­tion, and by exten­sion, access to right­ful injury com­pen­sa­tion and oth­er employ­ee benefits.

Opposition to the Changes

How­ev­er, con­cerns about poten­tial down­sides sim­mer. Indus­try giants like the Cham­ber of Com­merce oppose the rule, fear­ing job loss­es and reduced flex­i­bil­i­ty for both employ­ers and work­ers. The Cham­ber of Progress esti­mates gig work­er income loss­es could reach a stag­ger­ing $31 bil­lion if reclas­si­fied as employ­ees, poten­tial­ly impact­ing earn­ings and lim­it­ing self-direct­ed work schedules.

Workplace Injury Compensation

So, what does this mean for injury com­pen­sa­tion? The key lies in the blurred lines between employ­ee and inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor. Cur­rent­ly, mis­clas­si­fied work­ers often face an uphill bat­tle seek­ing com­pen­sa­tion for on-the-job injuries. Lack­ing access to employ­er-pro­vid­ed work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion insur­ance leaves them finan­cial­ly exposed to med­ical bills and lost wages.

The new rule’s empha­sis on a broad­er analy­sis of work­er rela­tion­ships could pave the way for fair­er adju­di­ca­tion of injury claims. If reclas­si­fied as employ­ees, more gig work­ers would fall under the umbrel­la of work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion cov­er­age, guar­an­tee­ing them cru­cial sup­port in case of injury. How­ev­er, the specifics of legal inter­pre­ta­tions and prac­ti­cal imple­men­ta­tion will ulti­mate­ly deter­mine the rule’s true impact on injury com­pen­sa­tion accessibility.

One thing’s for sure: the debate has inten­si­fied. While pro­po­nents hail the rule as a cham­pi­on for work­er rights and fair­er com­pen­sa­tion, includ­ing access to crit­i­cal injury com­pen­sa­tion, oppo­nents paint a pic­ture of eco­nom­ic con­se­quences and decreased work­er autonomy.

The ulti­mate out­come? Time will tell. But one thing’s clear: the fight to define who’s an employ­ee and who’s an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor has just shift­ed gears, with far-reach­ing impli­ca­tions for the gig econ­o­my, work­er rights, and, cru­cial­ly, access to just com­pen­sa­tion in the face of job-relat­ed injuries.


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TN Workers’ Compensation Appeal Rules

Read­ing Time: 2 min­utes

Revised Workers’ Compensation Appeal Rules in Tennessee (as of December 2023)

Minor Changes:

  • Removed out­dat­ed ref­er­ences to statutes and pro­gram rules.
  • Clar­i­fied con­tents of the record (appeals are decid­ed based on what’s in the record).
  • Added require­ments for attor­ney with­draw­al dur­ing an appeal.
  • Con­sol­i­dat­ed and clar­i­fied brief­ing requirements.
  • Clar­i­fied pro­ce­dure if a case is removed from the dock­et after oral argu­ment was scheduled.

Major Changes:

  • Dis­putes about the record: If there’s a dis­agree­ment about what’s includ­ed in the record on appeal, either par­ty can file a motion: 
    • Before dock­et­ing notice: with the Court of Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion Claims.
    • After dock­et­ing notice: with the Appeals Board to send the case back to the Court for resolv­ing the dis­pute.
  • Sum­ma­ry Appeals: The Appeals Board can now decide cer­tain appeals quick­ly (sum­mar­i­ly) under lim­it­ed circumstances: 
    • Appeals of orders relat­ed to con­tin­u­ances, sched­ul­ing orders, or motion to amend sched­ul­ing orders.
  • State­ments of the Evi­dence: No more joint statements! 
    • Appeal­ing par­ty sub­mits a state­ment sum­ma­riz­ing tri­al tes­ti­mo­ny to the judge.
    • Oth­er par­ty can object, amend, or sub­mit an alter­na­tive state­ment with­in 5 days.
    • Judge decides which state­ment is fair and accu­rate for the record.
    • No state­ment if par­ties can’t agree and no tran­script is available.
  • Appeal­ing Remand Orders: If the Appeals Board sends a case back to the Court with instruc­tions for a final order, and a par­ty wants to appeal that final order: 
    • First file a notice of appeal with the Appeals Board.
    • Then, request the Board to skip usu­al appeal steps and quick­ly decide the appeal (sim­i­lar to “sum­ma­ry appeal”).
  • Rule Sus­pen­sion: In rare cas­es, the Appeals Board can sus­pend any rule (except fil­ing dead­lines) for fair­ness and jus­tice reasons.

Important Notes:

  • These changes apply to all appeals filed after Decem­ber 21, 2023.
  • The Court of Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion Claims los­es most pow­er over a case once a notice of appeal is filed. Any motions or set­tle­ments must go through the Appeals Board.
  • The revised rules aim to address pro­ce­dur­al delays and make the appeals process fair­er and more efficient.

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Workers’ Comp Claim Timeliness

Read­ing Time: < 1 minute

Iowa Supreme Court Rules on Workers’ Comp Claim Timeliness: “Knowing is Half the Battle”

Case Back­ground: An Iowa farm work­er injured his right elbow while vac­u­um­ing grain and under­went surgery for a sub­se­quent shoul­der tear. The work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion car­ri­er denied his claim based on the two-year statute of lim­i­ta­tions, argu­ing he knew of the injury more than two years before filing.

Legal Issue: Did the “dis­cov­ery rule,” which delayed the start of the lim­i­ta­tions peri­od until the work­er knew the injury was seri­ous enough to affect his employ­ment, apply in this case?

Hold­ing: No, the dis­cov­ery rule was abol­ished by a 2017 amend­ment defin­ing “date of occur­rence of injury” as the date the employ­ee knew or should have known the injury was work-related.

Reasoning:

  • The amend­ed law elim­i­nat­ed the need for a sep­a­rate dis­cov­ery rule by explic­it­ly stat­ing when the time lim­it starts.
  • The court inter­pret­ed the leg­is­la­ture’s intent as set­ting a clear bench­mark for fil­ing claims, regard­less of the injury’s severity.
  • In this case, the work­er knew or should have known his elbow injury was work-relat­ed over two years before fil­ing, mak­ing his claim untimely.

Implications:

  • This deci­sion sim­pli­fies the statute of lim­i­ta­tions by remov­ing the uncer­tain­ty of the dis­cov­ery rule’s “per­ma­nent adverse impact” test.
  • Work­ers must be more proac­tive in fil­ing claims if they know or sus­pect a work-relat­ed injury, even if its seri­ous­ness is unclear.
  • Employ­ers ben­e­fit from increased clar­i­ty and pre­dictabil­i­ty in deter­min­ing claim timeliness.

Additional Notes:

  • The case also addressed the work­er’s claim for reim­burse­ment of his inde­pen­dent med­ical exam­i­na­tion (IME) costs. The court upheld the low­er court’s deci­sion to award reim­burse­ment based on sub­stan­tial evi­dence sup­port­ing the IME’s value.
  • This case serves as a reminder for work­ers and employ­ers to under­stand the legal require­ments sur­round­ing work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion claims, par­tic­u­lar­ly the revised statute of limitations.

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When “Independent Contractor” Becomes Illegal

Read­ing Time: 3 min­utes

New Jer­sey isn’t play­ing around when it comes to work­er mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion. This year, the state filed its first law­suit against two ship­ping and logis­tics com­pa­nies, STG Logis­tics and STG Drayage, for alleged­ly mis­clas­si­fy­ing over 300 truck dri­vers as inde­pen­dent con­trac­tors. This isn’t just a slap on the wrist – the state is seek­ing mil­lions in back wages, penal­ties, and fines.

When “Independent Contractor” Becomes Illegal: New Jersey Takes a Stand Against Worker Misclassification

But why is this such a big deal? Mis­clas­si­fy­ing employ­ees as inde­pen­dent con­trac­tors has seri­ous con­se­quences for both work­ers and the state. Work­ers lose out on vital ben­e­fits like min­i­mum wage, over­time, unem­ploy­ment, and work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion. Mean­while, the state miss­es out on tax­es and con­tri­bu­tions to crit­i­cal programs.

So, what’s the dif­fer­ence between an employ­ee and an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor? In New Jer­sey, it comes down to the “ABC test.” A work­er can only be clas­si­fied as an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor if the com­pa­ny can prove all three of these things:

  • A) The indi­vid­ual is large­ly free from con­trol or direc­tion over the per­for­mance of their work. 
  • B) The type of work per­formed is out­side the com­pa­ny’s usu­al course of busi­ness, or the work is per­formed out­side of the com­pa­ny’s place (or places) of business. 
  • C) The indi­vid­ual has their own inde­pen­dent trade, job, pro­fes­sion, or business.

In the case of STG Logis­tics and STG Drayage, the state alleges that the com­pa­ny failed to meet any of these require­ments. The dri­vers were tight­ly con­trolled, assigned routes, mon­i­tored by GPS, and even had their trucks leased exclu­sive­ly to the com­pa­ny. This lev­el of con­trol is a dead give­away for an employ­er-employ­ee rela­tion­ship, not an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor one.

The consequences of misclassification are severe. In this case, the state is seeking:

  • Back wages: Mil­lions of dol­lars in unpaid wages for the mis­clas­si­fied drivers.
  • Penal­ties: Large finan­cial penal­ties for vio­lat­ing New Jer­sey’s labor laws.
  • Fines: Addi­tion­al fines for each vio­la­tion of the law.
  • Stop-work orders: The pow­er to shut down the com­pa­ny’s oper­a­tions if they con­tin­ue to mis­clas­si­fy workers.

This law­suit is a clear mes­sage from New Jer­sey: if you mis­clas­si­fy work­ers, you will be caught, and you will pay the price. It’s a vic­to­ry for work­ers who have been denied their right­ful ben­e­fits and a warn­ing shot to oth­er com­pa­nies who might be tempt­ed to cut cor­ners by mis­clas­si­fy­ing employees.

2021 Workers Compensation Protection Law in New Jersey

But this isn’t just about one law­suit. New Jer­sey has been crack­ing down on work­er mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion for years. In 2021, Gov­er­nor Phil Mur­phy signed a series of laws that strength­ened the state’s enforce­ment pow­ers and increased penal­ties for vio­la­tors. These laws include:

  • The abil­i­ty to file law­suits in Supe­ri­or Court: Pre­vi­ous­ly, the state could only pur­sue mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion claims through an admin­is­tra­tive process. Now, they can take com­pa­nies direct­ly to court, where the penal­ties are much steeper.
  • Increased stop-work order author­i­ty: The state can now shut down a busi­ness for even a sin­gle vio­la­tion of wage, ben­e­fit, or tax laws. This is a pow­er­ful tool to force com­pa­nies to com­ply with the law.
  • The cre­ation of a new enforce­ment unit: The Office of Strate­gic Enforce­ment and Com­pli­ance (OSEC) was cre­at­ed to specif­i­cal­ly tar­get and inves­ti­gate work­er misclassification.

Employers Pay Attention

So, what does this mean for employ­ers? It’s sim­ple: play by the rules. If you have any work­ers who might be bor­der­line cas­es, err on the side of cau­tion and clas­si­fy them as employ­ees. It’s not worth the risk of get­ting caught and fac­ing severe penalties.

Here are some tips for employ­ers to ensure they are clas­si­fy­ing work­ers correctly:

  • Con­sult with an attor­ney: An employ­ment lawyer can help you under­stand the law and clas­si­fy your work­ers correctly.
  • Review your work­er clas­si­fi­ca­tion poli­cies: Make sure your poli­cies are up-to-date and reflect the lat­est laws.
  • Train your man­agers: Edu­cate your man­agers on the dif­fer­ence between employ­ees and inde­pen­dent con­trac­tors and how to iden­ti­fy misclassification.
  • Doc­u­ment every­thing: Keep detailed records of your work­ers’ duties, com­pen­sa­tion, and control.

Work­er mis­clas­si­fi­ca­tion is a seri­ous issue with real con­se­quences. New Jer­sey is tak­ing a strong stand against it, and oth­er states are like­ly to fol­low suit. Don’t get caught on the wrong side of the law. Make sure you are clas­si­fy­ing your work­ers cor­rect­ly and pro­tect­ing your busi­ness from cost­ly penalties.

Remem­ber, pro­tect­ing work­ers’ rights and ensur­ing fair com­pe­ti­tion are not just legal oblig­a­tions, they are also eth­i­cal imper­a­tives. By prop­er­ly clas­si­fy­ing your work­ers, you are not just avoid­ing fines, you are build­ing a fair­er and more just econ­o­my for everyone.

States Take Steps to Reform Workers’ Comp Systems

Read­ing Time: 4 min­utes

Work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion (WC) is a sys­tem that pro­vides ben­e­fits to employ­ees who are injured or become ill on the job. WC sys­tems vary from state to state, but they all have the same goal: to pro­vide finan­cial assis­tance to work­ers who are injured or become ill on the job. How­ev­er, WC sys­tems can be expen­sive for both employ­ers and employ­ees. In recent years, a num­ber of states have tak­en steps to reform their WC sys­tems in an effort to reduce costs and improve effi­cien­cy. These reforms include changes to the way claims are han­dled, the way ben­e­fits are cal­cu­lat­ed, and the way dis­putes are resolved.

Key Points:

  • States are tak­ing steps to reform their work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion sys­tems in an effort to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
  • These reforms include changes to the way claims are han­dled, the way ben­e­fits are cal­cu­lat­ed, and the way dis­putes are resolved.
  • The reforms are designed to make the work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion sys­tem more afford­able for both employ­ers and employ­ees, and to pro­vide bet­ter ben­e­fits to work­ers who are injured or become ill on the job.

Workers’ Comp Reform: What States Are Doing to Reduce Costs and Improve Efficiency

Work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion (WC) is a sys­tem that pro­vides ben­e­fits to employ­ees who are injured or become ill on the job. WC ben­e­fits can include med­ical expens­es, lost wages, and death benefits.

WC sys­tems vary from state to state, but they all have the same goal: to pro­vide finan­cial assis­tance to work­ers who are injured or become ill on the job. How­ev­er, WC sys­tems can be expen­sive for both employ­ers and employees.

In recent years, a num­ber of states have tak­en steps to reform their WC sys­tems in an effort to reduce costs and improve effi­cien­cy. These reforms include changes to the way claims are han­dled, the way ben­e­fits are cal­cu­lat­ed, and the way dis­putes are resolved.

Changes to the way claims are handled

One of the most com­mon reforms that states are mak­ing to their WC sys­tems is to change the way claims are han­dled. In the past, it could take months or even years for a WC claim to be processed. This was often frus­trat­ing for work­ers who were injured or became ill on the job and need­ed finan­cial assistance.

To address this issue, many states are now imple­ment­ing reforms that stream­line the claims process. These reforms may include things like:

  • Requir­ing employ­ers to report injuries to their work­ers’ comp insur­ance car­ri­ers with­in a cer­tain time frame
  • Requir­ing work­ers to file their claims with their employ­er’s work­ers’ comp insur­ance car­ri­er, rather than with the state
  • Cre­at­ing online por­tals where work­ers can file their claims and track the sta­tus of their claims. These por­tals can make it eas­i­er for work­ers to file their claims and to get the infor­ma­tion they need about the sta­tus of their claims

Changes to the way ben­e­fits are calculated

Anoth­er com­mon reform that states are mak­ing to their WC sys­tems is to change the way ben­e­fits are cal­cu­lat­ed. In the past, the amount of ben­e­fits that a work­er received was often based on their pre-injury earn­ings. This meant that work­ers who were injured or became ill on the job and were unable to return to their pre­vi­ous job could receive sig­nif­i­cant­ly less in benefits.

To address this issue, many states are now imple­ment­ing reforms that tie the amount of ben­e­fits to the sever­i­ty of the injury or ill­ness, rather than to the work­er’s pre-injury earn­ings. These reforms may include things like:

  • Estab­lish­ing a set sched­ule of ben­e­fits for cer­tain types of injuries or illnesses
  • Pro­vid­ing addi­tion­al ben­e­fits for work­ers who are unable to return to their pre­vi­ous job

Changes to the way dis­putes are resolved

In the past, if a work­er and their employ­er dis­agreed about a WC claim, the dis­pute would often go to court. This could be a cost­ly and time-con­sum­ing process for both parties.

To address this issue, many states are now imple­ment­ing reforms that allow work­ers and employ­ers to resolve dis­putes through alter­na­tive dis­pute res­o­lu­tion (ADR) meth­ods. ADR meth­ods include things like medi­a­tion and arbitration.

ADR meth­ods can be a more cost-effec­tive and time-effi­cient way to resolve WC dis­putes. They can also help to reduce the num­ber of WC cas­es that go to court.

The use of ADR in work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion is becom­ing increas­ing­ly com­mon. In some states, ADR is manda­to­ry for cer­tain types of work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion dis­putes. In oth­er states, ADR is voluntary.

If you are involved in a work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion dis­pute, you should dis­cuss ADR with your attor­ney. ADR may be a good option for you if you want to resolve your dis­pute quick­ly and cost-effectively.

Here are some of the ben­e­fits of using ADR in work­ers’ compensation:

  • ADR can be a more cost-effec­tive way to resolve disputes.
  • ADR can be a more time-effi­cient way to resolve disputes.
  • ADR can help to pre­serve rela­tion­ships between work­ers and employers.
  • ADR can help to ensure that dis­putes are resolved fairly.

If you are con­sid­er­ing using ADR in work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion, you should talk to an attor­ney who spe­cial­izes in this area of law. An attor­ney can help you to under­stand the ADR process and to make sure that you are mak­ing the best deci­sion for your case.

Con­clu­sion

Work­ers’ comp sys­tems are com­plex and ever-chang­ing. The laws and reg­u­la­tions gov­ern­ing work­ers’ comp vary from state to state, and the cost of work­ers’ comp is con­stant­ly chang­ing. As a result, it is impor­tant for employ­ers and employ­ees to stay up-to-date on the lat­est devel­op­ments in work­ers’ comp.

The reforms that states are imple­ment­ing are designed to reduce costs and improve effi­cien­cy. These reforms may include changes to the way claims are han­dled, the way ben­e­fits are cal­cu­lat­ed, and the way dis­putes are resolved.

If you have any ques­tions about work­ers’ comp, please con­sult with an attor­ney who spe­cial­izes in this area of law.

Independent Contractor Subcontractor & Workers Comp Laws

Read­ing Time: 7 min­utes

Are you an Inde­pen­dent or a Sub­con­trac­tor con­cerned about Work­ers Comp pro­tec­tion? Get Legal Help! Call Now for a FREE Con­sult with an Expe­ri­enced Work­ers Comp Lawyer at 844–682‑0999.

How Do Independent Contractor & Workers Comp Laws Work for Your State?

Is an Independent Contractor Covered by Workers Comp Insurance? 

No, inde­pen­dent con­trac­tors are not cov­ered by work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion insur­ance. Work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion insur­ance is for employ­ers to cov­er the med­ical costs and lost wages of employ­ees who are injured or become ill on the job. Inde­pen­dent con­trac­tors are not con­sid­ered employ­ees and are not eli­gi­ble for the same ben­e­fits and pro­tec­tions as employees.


Have You’ve Been Injured on the Job?

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844–682‑0999

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What are 20 different ways an Independent Contractor is Different from Employee? 

  1. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is paid on a project basis, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly placed on a salary or hourly wage.
  2. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not sub­ject to the same tax with­hold­ing oblig­a­tions as an employee.
  3. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can be hired for a spe­cif­ic project, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly hired to com­plete ongo­ing tasks.
  4. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not eli­gi­ble for employ­ee ben­e­fits such as health insur­ance, paid vaca­tion, and retire­ment plans.
  5. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not sub­ject to the same labor laws as an employee.
  6. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is typ­i­cal­ly paid for the ser­vices pro­vid­ed, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly paid for the hours worked.
  7. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can choose when and where they work, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly required to work dur­ing spe­cif­ic hours and in a cer­tain location.
  8. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can work for mul­ti­ple clients, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly works for one employer.
  9. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is respon­si­ble for their own tax­es and busi­ness expens­es, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly not respon­si­ble for any busi­ness expenses.
  10. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is typ­i­cal­ly not eli­gi­ble for unem­ploy­ment ben­e­fits, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly eli­gi­ble for unem­ploy­ment benefits.
  11. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor has the abil­i­ty to set their own rates, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly earns an agreed upon rate.
  12. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is respon­si­ble for their own lia­bil­i­ty insur­ance, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly cov­ered by the employ­er’s lia­bil­i­ty insurance.
  13. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not sub­ject to the same safe­ty reg­u­la­tions as an employee.
  14. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can choose the type of projects they work on, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly has to abide by their employ­er’s rules.
  15. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can work for mul­ti­ple clients at the same time, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly works for one employ­er at a time.
  16. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can work from any loca­tion, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly restrict­ed to a sin­gle location.
  17. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can choose how much and when they work, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly has to abide by their employ­er’s hours.
  18. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor can choose the ser­vices they offer, while an employ­ee typ­i­cal­ly per­forms the tasks assigned to them.
  19. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not eli­gi­ble for the same legal pro­tec­tions as an employee.
  20. An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is not eli­gi­ble for over­time pay, while an employ­ee is typ­i­cal­ly eli­gi­ble for over­time pay.

What is the difference between Independent Contractor and Sub-Contractor? 

An inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor is a per­son or enti­ty con­tract­ed to per­form work for anoth­er enti­ty, but who is not an employ­ee of that enti­ty and is not sub­ject to the con­trol or direc­tion of the hir­er. They usu­al­ly work on a project basis and are usu­al­ly paid on a per-project basis. 

A sub­con­trac­tor is a per­son or enti­ty con­tract­ed to per­form work for anoth­er enti­ty (the “prime con­trac­tor”). A sub­con­trac­tor is sub­ject to the con­trol and direc­tion of the prime con­trac­tor, which is the enti­ty respon­si­ble for the over­all per­for­mance of the project. The prime con­trac­tor typ­i­cal­ly con­tracts with the sub­con­trac­tor to per­form spe­cif­ic tasks relat­ed to the over­all project. The sub­con­trac­tor is usu­al­ly paid on an hourly basis.


What States and Which Statutes protects an uninsured sub-contractor for work related injury? 

  1. Cal­i­for­nia: Labor Code §3706
  2. Col­orado: Col­orado Revised Statutes §8–41-401
  3. Con­necti­cut: Con­necti­cut Gen­er­al Statutes §31–290
  4. Delaware: Delaware Code Title 19 §2314
  5. Flori­da: Flori­da Statutes §440.10
  6. Geor­gia: Offi­cial Code of Geor­gia Anno­tat­ed §34–9‑8
  7. Hawaii: Hawaii Revised Statutes §386–87
  8. Ida­ho: Ida­ho Code §72–1501
  9. Illi­nois: Illi­nois Com­piled Statutes 820 ILCS 305/2
  10. Indi­ana: Indi­ana Code §22–3‑2–2 Iowa: Iowa Code §85.20
  11. Kansas: Kansas Statutes Anno­tat­ed §44–501
  12. Maine: Maine Revised Statutes Title 39‑A §105
  13. Mary­land: Labor and Employ­ment Arti­cle §9–622
  14. Mass­a­chu­setts: Mass­a­chu­setts Gen­er­al Laws Chap­ter 152 §25A
  15. Michi­gan: Michi­gan Com­piled Laws §418.131
  16. Min­neso­ta: Min­neso­ta Statutes §176.181
  17. Mis­sis­sip­pi: Mis­sis­sip­pi Code §71–3‑37
  18. Mis­souri: Mis­souri Revised Statutes 287.065
  19. Mon­tana: Mon­tana Code Anno­tat­ed §39–71-411
  20. Nebras­ka: Revised Statutes of Nebras­ka §48–1,143
  21. Neva­da: Neva­da Revised Statutes 616A.540
  22. New Jer­sey: New Jer­sey Statutes Anno­tat­ed §34:15–79
  23. New York: New York Labor Law §25‑a
  24. North Car­oli­na: North Car­oli­na Gen­er­al Statutes §97–1
  25. North Dako­ta: North Dako­ta Cen­tu­ry Code §65–05-30
  26. Ore­gon: Ore­gon Revised Statutes §659A.820
  27. Penn­syl­va­nia: Penn­syl­va­nia Con­sol­i­dat­ed Statutes §440.11
  28. Rhode Island: Rhode Island Gen­er­al Laws §28–33‑2
  29. South Car­oli­na: South Car­oli­na Code of Laws §42–15-40
  30. Ten­nessee: Ten­nessee Code Anno­tat­ed §50–6‑116
  31. Texas: Texas Labor Code §406.092 Utah: Utah Code Anno­tat­ed §34A‑2–205
  32. Ver­mont: Ver­mont Statutes Anno­tat­ed Title 21 §614
  33. Vir­ginia: Code of Vir­ginia §65.2–308 Wash­ing­ton: Revised Code of Wash­ing­ton §51.12.065
  34. West Vir­ginia: West Vir­ginia Code §23–5A‑1
  35. Wis­con­sin: Wis­con­sin Statutes §102.29
  36. Wyoming: Wyoming Statutes §27–14-602

What States Hold Independent Contractor Liable for Injury at Workplace?

  1. Alaba­ma: Alaba­ma Code § 25–5‑11: “In any action brought against a gen­er­al con­trac­tor to recov­er dam­ages for per­son­al injury or death result­ing from any work done or ser­vices per­formed in con­nec­tion with the con­struc­tion, alter­ation, repair, or main­te­nance of any build­ing, struc­ture, or oth­er improve­ment to real prop­er­ty, the gen­er­al con­trac­tor shall not be liable for the dam­ages unless it is affir­ma­tive­ly shown that the neg­li­gence of the gen­er­al con­trac­tor was the direct and prox­i­mate cause of the injury or death sustained.”
  2. Cal­i­for­nia: Cal­i­for­nia Labor Code § 2750.5: “No per­son or enti­ty shall be liable for dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  3. Con­necti­cut: Con­necti­cut Gen­er­al Statutes § 31–288: “No per­son engaged in any work of improve­ment of any real prop­er­ty shall be liable for dam­ages on account of any injury to or death of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any employ­ee of such inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor, unless such injury or death is the result of the neg­li­gence of such per­son engaged in any work of improve­ment of such real property.”
  4. Flori­da: Flori­da Statutes § 768.095: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  5. Illi­nois: Illi­nois Com­piled Statutes § 745 ILCS 10/1: “No per­son or enti­ty employ­ing or con­tract­ing with an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor shall be liable for any dam­ages on account of injury to or death of any employ­ee of such inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor, or any oth­er per­son, result­ing from the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  6. Iowa: Iowa Code § 673.4: “No per­son employ­ing or con­tract­ing with an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor shall be liable for dam­ages on account of any injury to or death of any employ­ee of such inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor, or any oth­er per­son, result­ing from the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  7. Louisiana: Louisiana Civ­il Code Arti­cle 2317: “No con­trac­tor or sub­con­trac­tor shall be liable for dam­ages on account of any injury to or death of any employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any oth­er per­son, result­ing from the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  8. Mary­land: Mary­land Code Ann., Courts and Judi­cial Pro­ceed­ings § 5–309: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  9. Mis­sis­sip­pi: Mis­sis­sip­pi Code Anno­tat­ed § 11–1‑63: “No per­son engaged in any work of improve­ment of any real prop­er­ty shall be liable or respon­si­ble for dam­ages on account of any injury to or death of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any employ­ee of such inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor, unless such injury or death is the result of the neg­li­gence of such per­son engaged in any work of improve­ment of such real property.”
  10. Mis­souri: Mis­souri Revised Statutes § 537.672: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  11. Neva­da: Neva­da Revised Statutes § 41.135: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  12. New Jer­sey: New Jer­sey Statutes § 2A:37–4: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  13. New York: New York Labor Law § 240: “No con­trac­tor or own­er of real prop­er­ty shall be liable for dam­ages on account of any injury to or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any oth­er per­son, result­ing from the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  14. North Car­oli­na: North Car­oli­na Gen­er­al Statutes § 68–136: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  15. Okla­homa: Okla­homa Statutes Title 85A, § 1–102: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  16. Ore­gon: Ore. Rev. Stat. § 30.905: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  17. Penn­syl­va­nia: Penn­syl­va­nia Statutes § 8542: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  18. Texas: Texas Civ­il Prac­tice and Reme­dies Code § 82.006: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”
  19. Vir­ginia: Vir­ginia Code § 8.01–45.1: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.” 
  20. Wash­ing­ton: Wash­ing­ton Revised Code § 4.24.250: “No per­son or enti­ty, includ­ing a gen­er­al con­trac­tor, shall be liable for any dam­ages for injury or death of an employ­ee of an inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor caused by the neg­li­gence of the inde­pen­dent con­trac­tor or any of its employees.”


#Ama­zon #Appeal­sProcess #Back­ToWorkAf­ter­In­jury #Cal­cu­la­tors #Claims­De­nied #Con­struc­tion­Work­er­sCom­pen­sa­tion #Death­Ben­e­fits #Employ­ers #Flori­da­Work­er­sComp­Ben­e­fits #FreeCon­sult #Inde­pen­dent­Con­trac­tors #Injure­dAt­Work #Insur­ance­For­Work­er­sComp #LawsIn50States #Lawyer #Med­ical­Ben­e­fits #NJLaws #Occu­pa­tion­al­In­juries #Ore­gonWork­er­sComp­Ben­e­fits #OSHA #Per­ma­nent­Ben­e­fits #RehireAf­ter­In­jury #Repet­i­tive­Mo­tion­In­juries #Rights #SocialSe­cu­ri­ty #Tem­po­rary­Ben­e­fits #Ten­nessee­Work­er­sComp #Trans­porta­tion­Work­ers #USDe­part­mentOfLa­bor #Work­er­sComp­Ben­e­fits #Work­er­sCom­p­Claims #Work­er­sCom­pDis­abil­i­ty­Claims #Work­er­sCom­pen­sa­tion­Laws #Work­er­sCom­pRights #Work­In­jury­Terms


Types of Workers’ Comp Benefits in Florida

Read­ing Time: 3 min­utes

When an employ­ee is injured on the job in Flori­da, they may be eli­gi­ble for cer­tain types of work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion ben­e­fits. These ben­e­fits can help with med­ical expens­es and lost wages, among oth­er costs. To under­stand what types of ben­e­fits are avail­able and how to file a claim, it’s impor­tant to under­stand how work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion works in the state. This arti­cle cov­ers the types of work­ers’ comp ben­e­fits in Flori­da, eli­gi­bil­i­ty require­ments, com­mon injuries cov­ered, and how to file a claim.

Types of Workers’ Comp Benefits in Florida

What Benefits Are Available?

Under the Flori­da work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion pro­gram, ben­e­fits are avail­able to an employ­ee who is injured or killed on the job. These ben­e­fits may include med­ical care, lost wages, and even death ben­e­fits for sur­viv­ing fam­i­ly mem­bers. Work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion is an insur­ance pro­gram estab­lished by the state of Flori­da that pro­vides ben­e­fits to injured employ­ees and their fam­i­lies. The pur­pose of the pro­gram is to pro­vide finan­cial relief to employ­ees who are unable to work due to an injury or ill­ness relat­ed to their job.

How Is Eligibility Determined?

To be eli­gi­ble for work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion ben­e­fits, an employ­ee must meet cer­tain cri­te­ria. This includes hav­ing a valid claim of injury or ill­ness, being employed in a job cov­ered by the pro­gram, and hav­ing the injury or ill­ness relat­ed to the job. In addi­tion, the employ­ee must be under the care of a doc­tor and must have filed a report of the injury with their employ­er with­in 30 days of the incident.

What Types of Benefits are Available?

In Flori­da, work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion ben­e­fits typ­i­cal­ly fall into three cat­e­gories: med­ical ben­e­fits, dis­abil­i­ty ben­e­fits, and death ben­e­fits. Med­ical ben­e­fits cov­er the cost of med­ical care relat­ed to the injury or ill­ness. This may include doc­tor’s vis­its, hos­pi­tal stays, med­ica­tions, and oth­er treat­ments. Dis­abil­i­ty ben­e­fits are avail­able for employ­ees who are unable to work due to their injury or ill­ness. These ben­e­fits include week­ly pay­ments to help cov­er lost wages and oth­er expens­es. Death ben­e­fits are avail­able to the sur­viv­ing fam­i­ly mem­bers of an employ­ee who has died as a result of a job-relat­ed injury or illness.

What are Some Common Injuries Covered?

Work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion ben­e­fits in Flori­da cov­er a wide range of work­place injuries and ill­ness­es. Com­mon exam­ples of work­place injuries and ill­ness­es that might be cov­ered by the pro­gram include back injuries, repet­i­tive motion injuries, carpal tun­nel syn­drome, hear­ing loss, res­pi­ra­to­ry ill­ness­es, and work-relat­ed diseases.

How to File a Workers’ Comp Claim in Florida

If an employ­ee has suf­fered an injury or ill­ness relat­ed to their job, they should file a claim with their employ­er as soon as pos­si­ble. In Flori­da, the employ­ee must sub­mit a writ­ten report of the injury with­in 30 days of the inci­dent. The employ­er must then file a claim with the Flori­da Divi­sion of Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion. The employ­ee should also seek med­ical atten­tion for their injury or illness.

How an Attorney Can Help with Claims

The process of fil­ing a work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion claim can be com­plex, and it’s often ben­e­fi­cial to seek legal advice. An expe­ri­enced attor­ney can help ensure that the claim is han­dled prop­er­ly and that the employ­ee receives the ben­e­fits they are enti­tled to. An attor­ney can also help the employ­ee under­stand their rights and ensure that their inter­ests are rep­re­sent­ed through­out the process.

The Flori­da work­ers’ com­pen­sa­tion pro­gram pro­vides valu­able ben­e­fits to employ­ees who are injured or become ill due to their job. Under­stand­ing the types of ben­e­fits avail­able, the eli­gi­bil­i­ty require­ments, and how to file a claim can help employ­ees get the help they need. Work­ing with an expe­ri­enced attor­ney can also be ben­e­fi­cial and help ensure that employ­ees’ rights are protected.


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Illinois Workers Compensation Resources for Injured Workers

Read­ing Time: 1 minute

Illi­nois Work­ers Comp Resources. Call Now for a FREE Con­sult with an expe­ri­enced Illi­nois Work­ers Comp Lawyer at 844–682‑0999.

Illinois Workers Compensation Resources for Injured Workers

Work­ers Com­pen­sa­tion Laws for State ofIlli­nois
Statute for Work­ers Comp820 Illi­nois Com­piled Statutes Anno­tat­ed 305/1, et seq.
Work­ers Comp AgencyIlli­nois Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion Commission
Agency AddressILLINOIS
Illi­nois Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion Com­mis­sion
Cook Coun­ty Office Build­ing
69 W. Wash­ing­ton Street, Suite 900
Chica­go, IL 60602
(312) 814‑6611 or (866) 352‑3033
Statute of Limitations2 years from the last pay­ment of com­pen­sa­tion from your job, or 3 years from the date of your injury (whichev­er is longer)
State Law Exemp­tions and Spe­cial RulesDoes­n’t apply to farm­ers, jurors, or real estate bro­kers and sales­peo­ple. Busi­ness own­ers who fail to make pay­ments face fines of $500 per day with a $10,000 min­i­mum fine

Have You’ve Been Injured on the Job?

No Obligation — Confidential — FREE CONSULT

844–682‑0999

Call Now

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Texas Workers Compensation Resources for Injured Workers

Read­ing Time: 1 minute

Texas Work­ers Comp Resources. Call Now for a FREE Con­sult with an expe­ri­enced Texas Work­ers Comp Lawyer at 844–682‑0999.

Texas Workers Compensation Resources for Injured Workers

Work­ers Com­pen­sa­tion Laws for State ofTexas
Statute for Work­ers CompTexas Labor Code Anno­tat­ed § 401.001 et. seq
Work­ers Comp AgencyDepart­ment of Insurance
Agency AddressDepart­ment of Insur­ance
Divi­sion of Work­ers’ Com­pen­sa­tion
7551 Metro Cen­ter Dri­ve, Ste. 100
Austin, TX 78744–1609
*mail­ing address:
P.O. Box 12050
Austin, TX 78711
(512) 804‑4000 or (800) 252‑7031
Statute of Limitations1 year from the date of injury; 1 year from the date the employ­ee knew, or should have known, about an occu­pa­tion­al illness
State Law Exemp­tions and Spe­cial RulesDoes­n’t apply to fed­er­al employ­ees or inde­pen­dent contractors


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