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Donald J. Kaufman, Attorney at Law
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A work related back injury can hurt your whole family - CALL NOW AND GET HELP!
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Work related back pain can have an impact in the normal well-adjusted families. Spouses and children often take over family responsibilities once carried on by injured worker. The impact of limitations can result a restructuring of family and social roles, relationships, and self-identities. In addition, these impacts have led to depression and anger among the injured workers and to stress and strain in family relationships. Unlike the effects on work, many of these results are not valued in the workers’ compensation and, as a consequence, are less visible. They are important and more attention should be focused on social structural factors such as the provision of medical services and social support to reduce the impact of chronic back pain on family members. If you suffer from work comp back pain and need answers fast – call me 24/7 –Don Kaufman (970) 947-1776 I understand and will fight for you. www.glenwoodattorney.com

For more information please use this guide:

https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdle/node/20066
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Work related back pain can have an impact in the normal well-adjusted families.  Spouses and children often take over family responsibilities once carried on by injured worker. The impact of limitations can result a restructuring of family and social roles, relationships, and self-identities. In addition, these impacts have led to depression and anger among the injured workers and to stress and strain in family relationships. Unlike the effects on work, many of these results are not valued in the workers’ compensation and, as a consequence, are less visible. They are important and more attention should be focused on social structural factors such as the provision of medical services and social support to reduce the impact of chronic back pain on family members.  If you suffer from work comp back pain and need answers fast – call me 24/7 –Don Kaufman (970) 947-1776 I understand and will fight for you.  www.glenwoodattorney.com
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June 2017
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A message from Pinnacol Assurance
August 8, 2016

Viewpoint: Amendment 69 would gut Colorado’s stable workers’ comp system
Aug 8, 2016, 6:05am MDT
Phil Kalin President and CEO, Pinnacol Assurance
Colorado’s workers’ compensation system is one of the best in the nation because of the way it effectively balances reasonable premiums for employers and fair benefits for injured workers. The system helps retain business and lure new employers with its stability and financial security, making it a feather in the state economy’s cap.
But that will be threatened if the ballot initiative for Amendment 69, or ColoradoCare, is approved by voters in November. No doubt every Coloradan will be affected by the change, but the impact on employers, injured workers, and the entire workers’ comp system cannot be underestimated.
As an insurer that provides workers’ comp exclusively, why is Pinnacol concerned about the health care system? Under current law, workers’ comp insurance covers the health care needs of injured workers and replaces their lost wages, or indemnity, for as long as they are out of work. But by bringing the medical payments of workers’ comp under its umbrella, ColoradoCare would strip injured workers of a highly effective medical care system.
The system ensures every injured worker receives high quality care in a timely way from a physician accredited in occupational medicine, and gives them opportunity to safely return to work.
Workers’ comp is extremely complex, which is why California and Vermont – the only other states to seriously explore (and ultimately back away from) single-payer health care –excluded workers’ comp from their proposals.
For example, the director of health care reform in Vermont said that including workers’ comp in its single-payer plan could:
Increase overall costs to the employer
Increase administrative burdens
Create regulatory conflicts
Create coverage issues
Supporters of Amendment 69 say that integrating workers’ comp into ColoradoCare will save Colorado businesses money because their workers’ comp premiums will go down. But any workers’ comp savings will be eroded quickly by lower worker productivity and increased wage replacement costs. That’s because ColoradoCare won’t have mechanisms in place to do all the things many workers’ comp insurers do, like work with employers to keep their employees safe and minimize the potential for injury, and work with doctors to help injured workers get back to work in a timely and safe way. Even things like paying for injured workers to travel to and from doctor appointments are not accounted for in ColoradoCare.
And that’s not the only way ColoradoCare would diminish service and increase costs. Currently, when a workplace injury is caused by a third party, workers’ comp insurers can seek to recover funds from that third party through a process called subrogation. But Amendment 69 would give ColoradoCare first rights to subrogate, weakening workers’ comp insurers’ ability to collect for lost wages. That would result in millions of dollars of otherwise recoverable funds not being refunded to Colorado employers every year.
Amendment 69 also does a disservice to Colorado employers because, by leaving work comp insurers with only wage replacement, it eliminates insurers’ ability to manage costs. That would lead to many insurers leaving the state, destabilizing the entire system. Employers will pay the price.
As a political subdivision of the state, Pinnacol cannot donate corporate funds to campaign for or against a ballot initiative. However, we can take a position on an issue such as this that directly affects us, and our board has voted to oppose Amendment 69.
Colorado has proven it can make workers’ comp work for employers and injured employees – let’s not shake it up with the cost and uncertainty that would come with ColoradoCare.
Phil Kalin is president and CEO of Pinnacol Assurance, a state-chartered company which supplies policies to about 57 percent of Colorado businesses. He can be reached at 303-361-4891, or by email, phil.kalin@pinnacol.com.
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Donald J. Kaufman, Attorney at Law
(970) 947-1776
www.glenwoodattorney.com
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Happy Monday -Don Kaufman (970) 947-1776 www.glenwoodattorney.com
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AMERICA IS BUYING COAL FROM RUSSIA AS SHE SHUTS DOWN DOMESTIC PRODUCTION.

July 30, 2016
AS WE ARE CLOSING DOWN MINES ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES - AMERICA IS BUYING "RUSSIAN COAL?" I STAND WITH THE AMERICAN COAL MINER! IF ANY OF OUR COAL MINING FAMILY NEEDS HELP PLEASE CALL ME - DON KAUFMAN - 24/7 - AT (970) 947-1776 WWW.GLENWOODATTORNEY.COM - SHOUT OUT TO CRAIG, MEEKER, AND PAONIA!

HUNGRY U.S. POWER PLANT TURNS TO RUSSIA FOR COAL SHIPMENT

Mario Parker

July 16, 2014 — 2:30 PM MDT

A driver loads a truck with coking coal during mining operations at the Neryungrinsky mine in Neryungri, Russia. Russian coal is valued by power producers because it’s low in sulfur, enabling plants that haven’t installed equipment to minimize emissions to use the cheaper fuel. Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/BloombergWhen New Hampshire’s largest utility needed to rebuild coal supplies after the past frigid winter, it turned to Russia rather than Appalachia in the U.S. Northeast or Wyoming’s Powder River Basin.

The Doric Victory, a bulk carrier the length of two football fields, transported the fuel almost 4,000 miles (6,436 kilometers) from Riga, Latvia, last month to Public Service of New Hampshire’s Schiller power plant in Portsmouth, a 150-megawatt facility that’s produced electricity since 1952.

Utilities in the U.S. are scrambling for coal, on pace to increase imports 26 percent this year, as railroad bottlenecks slow deliveries and electricity demand climbs with an improving economy. Russia, the world’s third-largest exporter of the fuel, will boost shipments 3.9 percent to 106 million metric tons this year, IHS Energy forecasts, part of President Vladimir Putin’s plan to expand Russia’s role in the global coal market.

“Everyone’s aware that a number of plants have low stockpiles, so you hear Russian coal and they say, ‘Oh wow, people must really be desperate,’” James Stevenson, Houston-based director of North American coal at IHS, said in a July 8 telephone interview.

The New Hampshire utility declined to disclose the amount of coal that it purchased from Russia. U.S. bill of lading data show that 38,500 metric tons of steam coal were delivered.

RUSSIAN COAL

“A shipment of coal was contracted from Russia that met our operational and economic needs,” was all the utility was willing to say in an e-mail.

U.S.-Russia relations are at a post-Cold War low after Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea. The U.S. and European Union have imposed sanctions on companies and individuals tied to Putin’s inner circle and are considering further penalties.

The Russian fuel appeals to power producers because it emits less sulfur than other coals, making it easier to comply with environmental rules, and has a high heat content, meaning it can produce more power per measure of fuel, Stevenson said.

In 2012, Putin pledged to spend $120 billion in public and private funds to expand Russia’s coal mining capacity and boost exports through 2030. The country has the second-largest reserves behind the U.S., government data show.

Russia’s abundant supply of natural gas, also used to generate electricity, gives it the ability to flood the seaborne coal market, the U.S. Energy Department says. Exports from Russia have swelled 94 percent from January 2010 through May, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

COAL BURNING

U.S. utilities burned 30 million tons of coal inventories in the first quarter, EIA data show. March was the coldest for the month since 2002 in the contiguous 48 U.S. states, according to the National Climatic Data center, boosting power demand. In spring, an increase in oil and ethanol transport clogged the railways and slowed efforts by power generators to rebuild supply.

Some utilities have as little as 20 days of reserves, Bill Davison, vice president of thermal coal sales at Alpha Natural Resources Inc., said last month at a conference in New York.

Tennessee Valley Authority temporarily idled the Bull Run plant in May to rebuild supply, Vince Stroud, the company’s director of coal origination, said last month in an interview at the IHS McCloskey Coal USA conference in New York.

RAIL SERVICE

Power producers have placed an emphasis on reliability of supply, whether it’s domestic or imported, as they try to increase inventories and navigate spotty rail service, said Frank Kolojeski, director of marketing at Exporting Commodities International Inc., a brokerage in Marlton, New Jersey.

“A lot of companies were reluctant to go out and buy spot coal because they weren’t sure it would get delivered,” he said in a July 2 telephone interview.

The U.S. imported 34 million tons of coal in 2008, a year in which the fuel accounted for 48 percent of electricity generation, government data show. Foreign purchases tumbled to 8.9 million tons by last year as coal’s share of electricity consumption dropped to 39 percent while gas use gained.

Coal buyers, producers and shippers responded to shrinking imports by idling or reallocating equipment, Kolojeski said.

“Everybody had been used to five years of dormancy,” he said. “All of a sudden there was a surge in demand. It caught everybody off guard.”

In December days of coal supply fell below 60 days for the first time since summer 2011, according to the Energy Department’s statistical arm.

RISING IMPORTS

In the first quarter, the most recent period for which data is available, U.S. imports ballooned 71 percent to 2.4 million tons, EIA data show.

Companies in the U.S. are finding bargains because the world is currently oversupplied, Stevenson said. “In some ways the Russian coal was a bird in the hand,” he said.

Thermal coal is used to generate electricity, while the metallurgical variety is needed to forge steel.

Coal at the Australian port of Newcastle, Asia’s benchmark price, is down about 17 percent this year at $69.65 a metric ton. Coal for delivery next year to Northwest Europe is down 11 percent at $77.50. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, prices have increased 5.3 percent to $60.50.

The global seaborne coal market may rise 4.6 percent this year to 997 million metric tons and could reach a record 1 billion tons, the Englewood, Colorado-based information company, estimates. Indonesia is the biggest seller of coal, followed by Australia, according to IHS.

Colombia accounted for 67 percent and Indonesian coal made up 23 percent of U.S. imports in the first quarter, according to EIA. In the lower 48 states, the most foreign shipments have flowed in through Tampa, Florida, followed by Boston, the EIA datashow.

“If you are on the Atlantic Coast, you have a chance to buy imported coal,” Stevenson said. “If you’re a utility you have to act now and throughout the second half of the year in case there’s a colder winter than last year.”
In Coal Mine Injury, workers Compensation sett, Workers Compensation, Workers comp, work injury attorney, Pinnacol, Parachute Work Comp, Only Workers Comp Tags Coal Mine Injury, Coal Miners Rights, Coal Injury, workers Compensation Law, Workers Compensation
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You can get your Colorado personnel file today!

USA June 28 2016

On June 10, 2016, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper signed into law House Bill 16-1432. Effective January 1, 2017, the new law will require private sector employers to allow employees to access their personnel files at least once annually. The law does not apply to public sector employers (whose employees already have access to such records through the Colorado Open Records Act).

Under the new law, employers must permit current and former employees to inspect and obtain a copy of any part of their personnel files at a time convenient to both the employer and employee. A former employee may make one inspection of his or her personnel file after termination of employment. Employers may require access to personnel files to take place in the presence of a person responsible for maintaining personnel files or another employee designated by the employer. Employers are also permitted to require the employee or former employee to pay the reasonable cost of copying any part of the personnel file.

Definition of “Personnel File”

The new law includes a provision defining the term “personnel file” as “the personnel records of an employee…that are used or have been used to determine the employee’s qualifications for employment, promotion, additional compensation, or employment termination or other disciplinary action.”

Under the law, a “personnel file” does not include the following categories of documents: (1) documents required by state or federal law to be maintained in a separate file; (2) confidential reports from the employee’s previous employer; (3) documents pertaining to an active criminal investigation; (4) documents pertaining to an active disciplinary investigation; (5) documents pertaining to an active investigation by a regulatory agency; and (6) documents identifying a person who made a confidential accusation (as determined by the employer) against the employee requesting the personnel file.

What the New Law Does Not Do

The law explicitly states that it does not: (1) create a private cause of action; (2) require employers to create, maintain, or retain personnel files of employees or former employees; or (3) create any new record retention requirements. In addition, the law does not apply to financial institutions chartered and supervised under state or federal law, including banks, trust companies, savings institutions, and credit unions.

Next Steps for Employers

To prepare for the January 1, 2017 effective date of the new law, employers may want to consider taking the following actions:

Establish a protocol for compliance with the new law.
Educate all managers regarding the requirements of the new law and the processes by which the company will channel requests to access personnel files.
Update employee handbooks to reference the availability of personnel file review.
Educate appropriate staff regarding documents that should not be included in personnel files pursuant to applicable state or federal law (e.g., Forms I-9, medical information covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act, letters of reference, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or Colorado Civil Rights Division complaints or charges, and workers’ compensation material).
Ensure that documents excluded from the law’s definition of “personnel file” are removed from or no longer included in personnel files.
If not already in place, consider implementing a recordkeeping policy to confirm that employment records are kept as long as legally required by state and federal record retention laws and then, if not needed for other purposes, appropriately deleted and/or destroyed.
Ogletree Deakins - Steven R. Reid and David D. Powell
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Supreme Court comes to the rescue of our firefighters and shifts the burden to the insurance companies. I defend the rights of all of our first responders. -Don Kaufman (970) 947-1776 www.glenwoodattorney.com

Colorado Supreme Court: Workers’ Compensation “Firefighter’s Statute” Shifts Burden of Causation to Employer
Colorado Supreme Court: Workers’ Compensation “Firefighter’s Statute” Shifts Burden of Causation to Employer
May 6, 2016 By CBA-CLE Staff Leave a Comment

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in City of Littleton v. Industrial Claim Appeals Office on Monday, May 2, 2016.
Workers’ Compensation—Firefighters—Statutory Presumptions.
In this case, the Colorado Supreme Court addressed the presumption created in the “firefighter statute,” C.R.S. § 8-41-209, of the Workers’ Compensation Act of Colorado, C.R.S. §§ 8-40-101 to 8-47-209. The court held that the presumption in C.R.S. § 8-41-209(2)(a) relieves the claimant firefighter of the burden to prove that his cancer “result[ed] from his or her employment as a firefighter” for purposes of establishing under C.R.S. § 8-41-209(1) that his condition is a compensable “occupational disease” under the Workers’ Compensation Act. However, C.R.S. § 8-41-209(2) does not establish a conclusive, or irrebuttable, presumption. Instead, the firefighter statute shifts the burden of persuasion to the firefighter’s employer to show, by a preponderance of the medical evidence, that the firefighter’s condition “did not occur on the job.”
The court held that an employer can meet its burden by establishing the absence of either general or specific causation. Specifically, an employer can show, by a preponderance of the medical evidence, either: (1) that a firefighter’s known or typical occupational exposures are not capable of causing the cause of the claimant’s condition or type of cancer at issue; or (2) that the firefighter’s employment did not cause the firefighter’s particular cancer where, for example, the claimant firefighter was not exposed to the substance or substances that are known to cause the firefighter’s condition or impairment, or where the medical evidence renders it more probable that the cause of the claimant’s condition or impairment was not job-related.

WE FIGHT FOR OUR FIRST RESPONDERS!

-DON KAUFMAN

(970) 947-1776
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Of all the “mothers” I know north of Aspen, west of Vail - this is “par for the course.” Gentlemen fathers - you all rock – but you do not extricate your kids head from a lions mouth rock! Being a mom is a special kind of badass. Our wives do this every day! I am so very proud I married one of the Western Colorado Moms, and am humbly a friend to the rest of you ladies. Please never mistake me for a rogue lion!
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HAVE A HAPPY & SAFE HOLIDAY! DON'T DRINK & DRIVE!

The Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association and Alpine Bank present the 119th Annual Strawberry Days Festival June 17-19, 2016. Make it an annual tradition & join us in Glenwood Springs, Colorado the 3rd weekend in June every year for Strawberry Days!

he festival features live music & main stage entertainment, a FamilyFest area with interactive, entertaining and creative experiences for the kids; a Fine Arts and Crafts Fair, food court, an old-fashioned carnival, a parade down Grand Avenue and of course, we’ll serve FREE strawberries and ice cream on Saturday after the parade, just like we’ve been doing for the past century. - See more at: http://www.glenwoodchamber.com/strawberry-days-festival.html#sthash.Rth36LZx.dpuf

If you need legal help with your claim for Colorado Workers' Compensation call me 27/7 at (970) 947-1776 www.glenwoodattorney.com
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