CMS Gets Tough on Unapproved MSAs– Until They Don’t

In January, 2022, CMS created an uproar when it published Version 3.5 of its Workers Compensation Medicare Set-Aside Reference Guide stating that it would essentially ignore “non-submit” or “evidence-based” Medicare Set-Aside allocations: Unless an MSA is submitted and approved, CMS cannot be certain that Medicare’s interests are adequately protected. Therefore, CMS will treat any non-CMS-approved […]

Playing Devil’s Advocate

The litigation section of the California Lawyers Association recently published this bon mot: “Mediators are expected to play the role of ‘Devil’s advocate,’ questioning the strength or viability of the various legal arguments being asserted by parties and/or their counsel. In this context, mediators may dive deeply into the law applicable to the underlying dispute […]

Gifts for Every Lawyer

Know anyone who would benefit from better legal marketing with less stress? A lot of lawyers have great ideas about how to market their practice, but then they get busy and never follow through. The Lawyers Marketing Journal is a guided journal published by AttorneyAtWork.com that helps the user organize and actualize ideas while staying centered in both the personal […]

What is the Truth?

Many lawyers and claims professionals say that the litigation process is a search for truth. They will swear allegiance to a jury’s ability to ferret out the truth from conflicting evidence. And yet, more than 90% of all cases settle. The truth can be more slippery than you think. Individual Lens Each of us receives […]

3 REASONS HONEST WITNESSES TELL FALSE STORIES

Many cases turn on the recollection of “percipient” or “occurrence” witnesses. These are people who used their senses to see or hear relevant evidence. Less commonly, they might have smelled, touched,   or tasted something. Percipient witnesses contrast with expert witnesses, who are usually engaged in anticipation of or during litigation. Expert witnesses rely on evidence […]

50 SHADES OF NEGOTIATION GREY

No, this post doesn’t qualify as erotica. It’s about the ability to see nuance. Most cases are not black-and-white, no-doubt-about-it, situations. Rather, there are shades of grey. If this were an open-and-shut case, chances are that claim would not be in dispute. It’s Part of Empathy Being able to see all the facets of an […]

SETTLEMENT AND THE BOTTOM LINE

The offer on the table was a good one, but the attorney thought there was hope for something better. Then I took the attorney through the “what if’s.” Expenses Matter How much will it cost to bring this case to trial? What about experts’ fees? I asked the attorney to create two financial statements, one […]

SIBLING HATE

A Minnesota appellate case shows how damaging intra-family business disputes can be. The four Lund siblings had inherited equal shares of a trust holding a chain of grocery stores. The oldest sibling sued to force a buy-out of her shares on the ground that she had a reasonable expectation of financial independence and liquidity. She […]

ONE THING LIARS ARE REALLY GOOD AT

While not every liar is really good at lying, many are. In fact, they are so good, that the trier of fact—be that jury or judge—often find them to be credible, more credible than your evidence. Humans are actually poor judges of each other’s honesty. While we think we can look someone in the eye […]