The Bulldog Lawyers had a hand in creating the Lump Sum Settlement in Pennsylvania. It’s an interesting story.
A number of years ago, I think it was 1996, I had the opportunity of meeting with a group of Pennsylvania legislators and discussing Worker’s Compensation. Now I remember saying to them and a group of other lawyers as well that there are only two types of cases in Pennsylvania that can’t be settled. A custody case unless both parties agree to some schedule, and a Worker’s Compensation case because in Worker’s Compensation back then you used to have to make up a hypothetical earning capacity and a complicated formula to try to settle the case.
The medical portion of your case remained open so the adjusters and the insurance company had to continue to pay for that and there was no real way to end the case. And I told the legislators that and as history proves my suggestion was taken up by two of the legislators that were there and ended up being the basis upon which the Pennsylvania Compromise and Release was borne. So there are some lawyers in Montgomery County and Philadelphia that have given me credit for creating the Compromise and Release Settlement.
The Compromise and Release Settlement allows and the benefit of that is that now therefore…
A Compromise and Release Settlement allows an individual to get value for their case in the form of future benefits indemnity or your wage benefits and for your future medical benefits all in a lump sum, to be free from Worker’s Compensation, to be able to start to think about what you can do. If not your old job something more sedentary, to get back your life, to have a little bit of cash to start it up with and it has been for many Pennsylvania workers a Godsend because Worker’s Compensation and being totally disabled from work creates a situation where you are at home week after week, month after month, year after year, and your family starts to wonder if you are ever going to be productive again.
You start to wonder the same thing, and by being able to put a circle around your case, getting value for it, settling your case, and then starting to think about what else you can do with your life now that this is over is truly a blessing. And I have found this time and time again especially when men are home and they have worked all their lives. They have a work ethic handed down from generation to generation and here they are at home watching television, moping around, and thinking about their pain day after day after day after day. And one of the best ways it seems to me after all these years of experience to help someone gain their dignity back is to settle their case for the proper value and then guide them somewhat in returning to a productive life, even if it’s a job you never even thought you could do. Even if it’s something that used to be a profession or a job that you thought was menial, getting up every day and shaving and dressing whatever male female and getting out the door to spend a few hours with other people in a productive manner is truly a blessing.