Workers faced with career ending injuries sustained while on the job can be left financially destitute and in need of an attorney to advocate on their behalf. As an attorney at Edelman & Thompson for sixteen years, Steffanie Stracke has represented thousands of injured workers and secured many awards for an injured worker’s lifetime. Prior to joining Edelman & Thompson, Steffanie served for over six years as a legal advisor with the Division of Worker’s Compensation.
Navigating the MO Second Injury Fund
Often, workers experience not one but multiple work-related injuries while employed over the course of their career. When the last work-related injury combines with certain qualifying disabilities the worker may be entitled to lifetime benefits paid by the state’s Second Injury Fund. However, multiple factors impact a worker’s eligibility for Missouri’s fund, and those factors were drastically altered based on legislative changes adopted in 2014.
In 2014, the Legislature changed the requirements for the Second Injury Fund to be found responsible. These complex factors can be daunting for individuals without the help of an attorney. The requirements surrounding the fund can create a lack of clarity for client’s seeking compensation when already faced with the challenge of recovering from a work-related injury.
MO Supreme Court Case
The attorneys at Edelman & Thompson fiercely advocate on behalf of clients faced with these complex scenarios. A client of Steffanie’s was faced with a similar situation following a series of work injuries. He retained the services of Edelman & Thompson in 2014. Steffanie successfully advocated for his medical treatment and lost wages prior to being awarded lifetime benefits to be paid by the Second Injury Fund. The fund appealed the award, raising issues surrounding the statutory construction of the 2014 legislative changes. After wins at the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission and Missouri Court of Appeals the legal issues were ultimately decided by the Missouri Supreme Court.
In April 2020, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled that each qualifying preexisting condition must be 50-weeks of disability and either stem from a prior compensable work injury, a prior active-duty military disability, be a condition that aggravates or accelerates the last work injury or involve the opposite extremity of the last work injury. Their decision will provide future clarity for injured workers who are unable to return to the workplace to determine whether the employer or the Second Injury Fund may be found liable.
Steffanie’s tenacity for her client embodies Edelman & Thompson’s dedication to fighting for the rights of injured workers. With decades of experience representing tens of thousands of clients, Edelman & Thompson provides unparalleled expertise for employees injured on the job.
Injured? Call today for an attorney to advocate for you
If you are a loved one have been injured, call Edelman & Thompson to speak with an attorney to advocate on your behalf. The attorneys at our firm will fight for your rights and help you get the medical treatment and the compensation you are entitled to. At Edelman & Thompson, we seek the compensation we believe a judge would award at hearing and if we cannot achieve that through settlement our attorneys take cases to trial. As a result, we have won more jury verdicts and work injury cases in the last seven years than any other Kansas City law firm.
Edelman & Thompson’s dedication to clients has made our firm number one in auto accident wins and number one in work injury wins in Kansas City. Call us today to receive a free consultation on your case and speak to an attorney to advocate for you directly within 24 hours.
For a free consultation of your case, contact Edelman & Thompson online or call (816)556-3400 today to speak with an attorney the first time you call.