Q: The AME has added 2 additional dates of injury for the same body parts with the same employer. The AME has apportioned between these dates of injury. Does the employee need to file two more DWC-1 forms or amended applications to settle this? Can the settlement document list all three injury dates thereby resolving all three at the same time?
A: You would not need separate DWC-1 forms or amended applications in order to settle all claims. The settlement documents would serve in place of both, though the WCAB might have to assign separate ADJ numbers depending on how the settlement is drawn and its own procedures. Be aware that the statute of limitations would toll as to the dates of injury acknowledged by way of the doctor’s reporting.
It is also acceptable to list all three dates of injury on settlement documents. It is noted, however, Benson issues are identified (i.e. apportionment of PD to multiple dates of injury) and the indemnity may have to be: (1) broken up by date of injury; then (2) calculated separately which results in a lower payout for each percentage assigned to the individual dates of injury.
Payments of indemnity should be identified separately as the payment towards one date of injury may not be allowed a credit against the others. Using Benson, the separate Awards in this case (as is true in most cases) costs less than a single Award if asserted against the original date of injury after apportionment to non-industrial factors.