Regulation 67-1601 A (1) provides the expenses incurred for travel to receive
medical attention which shall be reimbursed to the claimant are mileage to and
from a place of medical attention which is more than five miles away from home in
accordance with the amount allowed state employees for mileage.
The state employee mileage rate is based upon the standard business mileage rate
established by the Internal Revenue Service. Effective January 1, 2014 the
reimbursement rate for state employee mileage is 56 cents per mile. Therefore,
effective January 1, 2014, the new mileage reimbursement rate to and from a place
of medical attention is 56 cents per mile.
Sometimes a treating doctor or surgeon will not agree to testify in court, and in fact will not have anything to do with a patient’s injury case.
Clients of The David Law Firm ask what can they do when their own doctors do not want to be bothered. In some cases a treating doctor will demand thousands of dollars to testify, attend a deposition, or even write a written report.
Since the injured victim always has the burden of proof to show the nature and extent of the harms and losses, expert medical testimony is vital.
Attorney Byron David advises clients in these circumstances that there are other options:
- While the U.S. Constitution forbids involuntary servitude, such that a doctor cannot be forced to give an opinion or testimony, physicians and other healthcare providers can be subpoenaed as fact witnesses — much like an eyewitness to a car crash or dog bite attack.
- Hiring a paid expert witness is another way to obtain medical testimony in a case. In order to keep the costs down of going this route, David counsels disabled clients that a reviewing physician, independent examiner, or other expert witness will be questioned in a deposition, but will not necessarily be retained for trial.
- If the treating doctor, family physician, or surgeon refuses to participate in a trial, then David has over the years taken many videotaped depositions for later presentation to the jury. While David prefers live testimony of the actual treating doctors, videotaped depositions, along with the appropriate visual aids and medical illustrations, have their place and purpose.
- In major cases, the David Law Firm trial team will retain a medical expert to evaluate and examine the patient, along with his or her medical records and films. That medical doctor can then testify at trial as to his or her findings, opinions, and explanations of the medical terminology.
- Another solution is to have a non-examining doctor perform a medical records review of the films and records i.e., x-rays, MRI, CT scan, pet scan, etc. and then testify based upon that limited information.
- The David Law Firm has also used nurses, PhD’s, and other experts to explain medical conditions, anatomy, and the usual customary charges for medical treatment.
If you, or someone you care for, has been injured through no fault of their own, and there are questions about their doctors’ assistance in their case or claim, call The David Law Firm (843) 488-1415.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN
Due to the Federal Government Shutdown, Social Security field offices are open with limited services. Hearings offices remain open to conduct hearings before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Social Security card centers are closed.
Social Security and Supplemental Security Income payments to beneficiaries will continue with no change in payment dates.
Due to Congressional inaction to prevent the Government shutdown, SSA will only provide the following services at Social Security field offices:
- Help you apply for benefits
- Assist you in requesting an appeal
- Change your address or direct deposit information
- Accept reports of death
- Verify or change your citizenship status
- Replace a lost or missing Social Security payment
- Issue a critical payment
- Change a representative payee
- Process a change in your living arrangement or income (SSI recipients only)
SSA cannot provide the following services:
- Issue new or replacement Social Security cards
- Replace your Medicare card
- Issue a proof of income letter