Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

A Civilians Battle

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on July 12, 2009

Jeff  Haysom injured war zone contractor’s story in the Yakima Herald today.

We’ve highlighted these remarks by John Bennett of Roger Levy’s firm.

“He does have some residual wage earning capacity but has chosen not to take advantage of that,” John Bennett, a San Francisco-based lawyer, said at the hearing.

Civilian contractors, Bennett suggested, knowingly risk their lives for the big bucks in Iraq.

This is not a LHWCA or DBA issue Mr. Bennett it is simply your opinion and it does not let AIG off the hook.

We’ll all be hoping for a fair ruling on your claim Jeff.

6 Responses to “A Civilians Battle”

  1. Mr. Bennett my husband went to Iraq to do the job he always did for the same money, the same company.

    Why is your law firm doing it’s best to deny him benefits too?

  2. daffodils said

    The law is crystal clear on this issue:
    Disability is defined under the Act as an “incapacity to earn the wages which the employee was receiving at the time of injury in the same or any other employment.” 33 U.S.C. § 902(10).

    There should not even be an argument about this; a waste of the courts time, needless litigation stress for the injured but lucrative only for the immoral defense lawyers: Claimant contends that he will never be able to locate work which will pay a wage comparable to his pre-injury employment even if he is not totally disabled, and he asserts that he will therefore still be entitled to the maximum compensation rate.

    Its high time that judges start imposing hefty fines for frivolous lawsuits.

  3. Barry said

    I believe AIG intentionally ignored the true definition of disability and distracted and obfuscated when their attorney wrote :

    “He does have some residual wage earning capacity”

    When you add this DBA example to the following U.S. Title 29 disability case quote from a U.S. Judge you have proof that multiple insurance companies and their attorneys are very good at distracting and lying in multiple types of insurance.

  4. daffodils said

    Agree with everything you say, Barry, but our struggle is very different because key DOL judges are corrupt – unlike the ones you are quoting.
    We can’t get the evidence readily available to stateside disability cases in the fog of war. Employer “witnesses” lie with impunity about job conditions or incidents to keep their jobs because we can’t hop on a plane and investigate and get independent testimony. The KBR medical records are fake, regularly contradiced by the military in an emergency. Contractors may not discuss anything even with their spouses and their computers are “scrubbed” before they go home on leave. I have yet to come accross a case where any defense contractor was compelled by this farce of a legal process to disclose any records – a simple imperative like discovery does not happen in DBA with predictable consequences.
    Enough said. No wonder Obama can’t find any civilians for his ongoing Afghan adventure if this is they way they are treated when they get hurt.

  5. Barry said

    Daffodil, I will add that another common bond we share is in the rampant lying from everyone on the insurance companies side.

    You wrote :

    “Employer “witnesses” lie with impunity about job conditions or incidents to keep their jobs because we can’t hop on a plane and investigate and get independent testimony. ”

    They do the same in the U.S..

    I have evidence that proves doctor’s, lawyers, so called independent medical review companies, and the insurance company agents are openly lying in writing, and no one in te U.S. government will stop them.

  6. Krash said

    I was on the MSR the night Jeff’s truck was hit and was so grateful to hear that he was alive, after seeing the aftermath of the ambush on his convoy.

    It is so sad to hear that he is still fighting to get DBA benefits. What part of TBI doesn’t the insurance company lawyers understand. The person that went out on the MSR that night no longer exists . . according to the article he is physically unable to perform the job that he was doing when injured and has shown that he is unable to perform other work too. So what would make you think that his injuries do not qualify him for permanent disability?

    Oh yeah, must be the profits that the insurance won’t make off of his claim.

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