Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

Independent Medical Evaluations, AIG and CNA

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on May 9, 2009

For clarification of when an IME is called for  :  Independent Medical Evaluations under the Defense Base Act

According to the Defense Base Act,  the employer carrier may request that the employee be examined by a doctor that they choose.  They may do this for each injury being claimed.

This is called a Defense Medical Examination .   It will often be referred to as an Independent Medical Examination though there is normally nothing Independent about it.

It is their preference to hire doctors who do this for a living.  The are called Independent Medical Examiners though they are nothing of the sort.   There are even companies  that provide these “services” to insurance companies.  They are paid by the insurance companies to testify against you at your hearing.

From  Your Independent Medical Evaluation ( a must read for the injured contractor)

In theory, IME’s are intended to “clarify” very complex medical restrictions and limitations.

However, in actual practice, the independent medical evaluation is a “risk management” tool

paid for by the disability insurer which “rubber stamps” a future decision to deny your claim.

One Forensic Psychiatrist actually admitted to one of our injured contractors that “no one here is your friend” when questioned about why he should be discussing his life with him.

He was left unattended  (against the protocal) while taking the MMPII and Fake Bad Scale .  A diagnoses of PTSD was denied in direct conflict with his personal psychiatrists diagnoses.

These doctors and services are not always a reasonable distance for the injured contractor.

The injured contractor is not required to  leave their geographic area to see a doctor hired by the insurance company.  If you have been told you had to travel 2 or 3 hours to see one of their doctors when there are plenty of specialists in your area available  why would you do this?  Why should the taxpayer pay for it?

CNA’s lawyers will claim you are being uncooperative if you refuse to travel across the state to see their favorites and request to be seen by one of the dozen or more specialists in your geographic area.

If your lawyer tells you to do this you need to question your lawyer.

Our question is:

Why have some claimants been flown or asked to drive from as far as five states away to see Dr. John Dorland Griffith a “psychiatrist” in Houston on behalf of  AIG ?  Wow, that’s really being cooperative.

How many of you lost your claims based on this doctors testimony?

How many of you have been asked to travel to see AIG’s  fab four in Houston?

And why?

WHY? The biased Department of Labor of ALJ’s think this is reasonable?

6 Responses to “Independent Medical Evaluations, AIG and CNA”

  1. Krash said

    Wow . . another stall tactic to not pay claims. Why am I not surprised . . .

    I suggest that all injured contractors get a copy of the Defense Base Act Handbook from the Department of Labor . . it clearly states that you do NOT have to leave your geographical location to see doctors. If you can’t get a copy of the handbook then look up the regulation on the Department of Labor’s website . . .

  2. daffodils said

    If the insurance doctors are “independent”, how come they only testify against claimants?

    A review of the 38 decisions issued in war related PTSD claims show that in no less than 10 of the 17 denied cases one Dr John Griffiths testified against people diagnosed with PTSD/ depression.

    Despite his ignorance and blatant bias, some judges still rely on his “expert opinion” although he doubts that PTSD even exists .

    What planet are they living on? President Obama recently called post tramatic stress (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI) the signature wounds of the Iraq war, so how come his Labor Department judges unfairly deny treatment and or compensation in over half these cases? Why are there so few PTSD claims in the first place when there are more contractors than troops in the war zones?
    Perhaps its the chilling effect of these rulings and the abusive, degrading, contemptous treatment inflicted on already traumatized individuals for daring to file a claim.

    The following excerpts from Judge Romero’s decision in KS v KELLOGG-BROWN & ROOT issued 11/28/2008 speak for themseves:

    Dr. Griffith explained that he concluded Claimant was
    malingering based upon his interview with Claimant and Claimant‟s MMPI-2 results, particularly the fake bad scale.
    While cross-examination of Dr. Griffith established he is not an expert in the scoring and interpretation of the
    MMPI-2, I find such lack of expertise does not diminish Dr.Griffith’s ability to utilize the results of such testing
    as a factor in forming his professional opinion.
    He (Dr Griffith) testified he was not aware that the
    „PK‟ scale is called the Post-Traumatic Stress
    Disorder-Keen Scale, that scores in excess of 64 are
    considered indicative of PTSD, and that Claimant scored a 70. (EX-22, p. 12) Dr. Griffith stated he is not an expert in the administration, scoring, and interpretation of the MMPI-2.
    He testified there are several scales contained in the
    MMPI-2 that address malingering. (EX-22, p.8). He stated he did not know what many of the letters of the scales on the MMPI-2 mean nor the significance of several scales listed in MMPI-2. (EX-22, pp. 8
    When asked whether he doubted whether PTSD is a valid condition, he responded: “I have some doubts about it, especially some forms of it.” (EX-22, p. 51).

  3. Was I surprised to find this?

  4. […] Independent Medical Evaluations AIG and CNA […]

  5. […] to produce any record asked for or refused to to go to AIG’s hired gun “doctors” for Defense Medical Examinations they could  automatically lose their […]

  6. It is actually a great and useful piece of info. I’m happy that you shared this helpful information with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: