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Day 1 | COVID, COVID, Go Away, Workers' Comp. Is Here to Stay (2021 Workers' Compensation Winter Program)

1:25         Welcome and Introductions

1:30         Looking Back at the Origins and Policy Considerations of the Industrial Commission Mediation Program

Frank C. Laney, 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Cary

Kick off the program with a discussion of the circumstances and background that led the Industrial Commission to establish a mandatory mediation program, along with policy considerations and decisions that led to its initial structure and design.

2:30         Break

2:40         Social Media Ethics*‡

Uta Marie Zacharias, Lawyers Mutual Liability Company, Cary

Social media can be a great way for attorneys to gather and share information, but it also presents many ethical traps. Learn about effectively counseling clients on the legal ramifications of social media, protecting client confidentiality, managing professional networking websites and online client reviews, and ensuring social media posts comply with advertising requirements — while also complying with the Rules of Professional Conduct.

3:40         Break

3:50         Traumatic Brain Injuries

April Groff, Ph.D., Learning Services Raleigh Program, Raleigh

Receive an overview of traumatic brain injuries and their classifications and symptoms. Then, consider the different stages of recovery, possible long-term issues, life care plans needed and the ethical problems with a post-concussion syndrome diagnosis.

4:50         Adjourn

*Indicates portion providing Ethics/Professional Responsibility credit
Indicates portion providing Technology Training credit


Description

This program looks at the new "normal" of the workers' compensation practice and revisits some of the fundamental concepts that got the practice where it is today. It also explores newly emerging ideas that many come across but may not fully understand.

Contributors

  • Heather T. Baker

    Heather T. Baker concentrates her practice in the area of workers’ compensation. Heather graduated magna cum laude from North Carolina State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and minors in Art & Design and Journalism, and was inducted into the Phi Eta Sigma Honors Fraternity. Heather received her Juris Doctor from the University of North Carolina School of Law.

    Currently, Heather is assisting with the launch of Lawyers 4 Literacy in Wake County, which is a volunteer organization that pairs lawyers in the area with elementary school children in an effort to increase literacy and interest in civics and history. She is a member of the North Carolina State Bar, North Carolina Bar Association, Wake County Bar Association and the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys. In 2015 and 2016, Heather was named a “Rising Star” by North Carolina Super Lawyers magazine. She is admitted to practice in the United States District Court in the Eastern District of North Carolina.

    Click here for more information about Heather.

  • James L. "Jim" Blackburn

    James L. "Jim" Blackburngraduated from Wake Forest University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law. His legal background includes serving as Special Deputy Attorney General in the North Carolina Attorney’s General office, First Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, United States Attorney and several years in private practice.

    Blackburn’s most notable appointment was serving as the lead prosecutor in the trial of Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald, who was accused of murdering his pregnant wife and two daughters. He was convicted and sentenced to three consecutive life terms in prison. A book and television mini-series, Fatal Vision, was based on this trial.
    Blackburn’s law career ended dramatically in 1993 when he was found guilty of several ethical violations. In April, 1993, he turned in his license to practice law to the North Carolina Bar. He subsequently served a brief time in prison, suffered from depression, spent several years in therapy and a brief stay in Duke Hospital, and then waited tables at the restaurant where he formerly entertained many clients.
    Blackburn documented these experiences in his book, FlameOut. He now has another successful career, through speaking engagements to many varied groups in a number of states and teaching Bar approved CLE courses on Ethics and Professionalism and Mental Health issues.

    Click here for more information about Jim.

    #In 1993, James Blackburn turned in his license to practice law, and the State Bar subsequently issued a letter of disbarment.

  • B. Jeanette Byrum

    B. Jeanette Byrum – born Monroe, North Carolina, July 29, 1981. She was admitted to bar, 2008, North Carolina. Education includes: University of North Carolina at Charlotte (B.A., 2003); Western New England University (J.D., 2006). Phi Alpha Delta and National Trial Advocacy Team. Member, North Carolina and Mecklenburg County Bar Assns., North Carolina State Bar; Member, North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys; Member, 2017 - 2021, Advisory Council, Workers Compensation Section of the North Carolina Bar Association; Member, 2018 – 2020 Steering Committee for Workers’ Compensation Practice Group of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys; Best Lawyers in America, Workers’ Compensation.

    Click here for more information about Jeanette.

  • Sherman L. Criner

    Sherman L. Criner began his legal career as an Agency Legal Specialist for the NC Industrial Commission. He was a partner with Hedrick, Blackwell & Criner (1994-2002) handling defense, plaintiff & non-insured cases in workers' compensation. He was in solo practice with The Criner Law Firm d/b/a The Workers Compensation Law Firm (2003-2007). He is currently a partner with Prior, Criner & Edwards. Sherman is a N.C. State Bar Board Certified Workers Compensation Specialist. He is a licensed attorney and mediator in North Carolina & South Carolina. He continues to litigate selected cases in NC & SC but primarily spends his time mediating and arbitrating cases in NC & SC and for the American Arbitration Association.

    Click here for more information about Sherman.

  • Barbara Fairchild

    Barbara Fairchild is the chief executive officer of NuQuest in Longwood, FL. She brings 35 years of experience and proven performance in the insurance industry, specializing in catastrophic case management, drug and medical utilization review, and critical-care nursing.

    As an instructor, Ms. Fairchild has taught multiple courses and presented webinars across the United States. Courses she has presented include Medicare Conditional Payments: Current Obligations & Medicare Advantage Plans, Aging Workforce, Medicare Set-Aside Basic, and Medicare Set-Aside: MSP Compliance.

    Ms. Fairchild holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from St. Louis University graduating with honors. Additional professional credentials include Registered Nurse, Certified Life Care Planner, and Medicare Set-Aside Consultant Certified.

    Click here for more information about Barbara.

  • April Groff, Ph.D.

    April Groff, Ph.D., Learning Services Raleigh Program, Raleigh

    Click here for more information about April.

  • Bruce A. Hamilton

    Bruce A. Hamilton has developed a special expertise in the field of workers’ compensation. Bruce has lectured about workers’ compensation law at the North Carolina Bar Association’s Workers’ Compensation Seminars annually from 1997 through 2017. He has also been a member of the faculty and speaker at continuing legal education programs produced by the North Carolina Association of Self-Insurers, North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers, Wake Forest University, and the North Carolina Institute of Government to name a few. In addition, Bruce has lectured at each of the North Carolina Industrial Commission’s Annual Educational Conferences from 2001 through 2016, was a council member of the Workers’ Compensation Section of the North Carolina Bar Association from 2001 through 2004, was selected by his peers to be included in the North Carolina Edition of Super Lawyers from 2006 through 2016 and has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America© since 2001. Bruce received the unique honor of being named by Best Lawyers as its 2013 Raleigh Workers’ Compensation-Employers “Lawyer of the Year,” a recognition he again was awarded in 2016 and 2019. He has earned the highest (AV-Rated) raking awarded by Martindale-Hubbell since 2009. In 2018, Bruce was selected as one of the 2018 North Carolina Lawyers Weekly Leaders in the Law, an honor bestowed upon the most influential individuals in our state’s legal community.


    Bruce graduated from Tulane University with a Bachelor of Science degree, and received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.

    Click here for more information about Bruce.

  • Vicki Hewitt-McNeil

    Vicki Hewitt-McNeil is a rehabilitation nurse consultant with the North Carolina Industrial Commission in Raleigh, NC. She has been a Registered Nurse for more than 25 years and has been a certified case manager advocating for injured workers in the workers' compensation arena for 14 years. She is also certified in working with traumatic brain injuries and other catastrophic injuries.

    Vicki has previous experience for oversight of compliance with URAC Accreditation, Quality Management Program, Safety Program, HIPAA, and Nursing Education.

    Vicki attended North Carolina Central University where she received her Bachelor of Science in nursing degree and received her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Phoenix.

    Click here for more information about Vicki.

  • Frank C. Laney

    Frank C. Laney has served as Circuit Mediator for the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit for over 20 years, mediating in excess of 3700 cases. He is also an adjunct professor at North Carolina Central and Campbell Schools of Law, and an ex-officio member of the NC Dispute Resolution Commission. Annually he teaches mediation in Belarus and other former soviet countries. He is the former Mediation Coordinator for the NC Industrial Commission, a former partner in Mediation Inc. and for three years in the early 1990's limited his private practice in Raleigh to mediation. He has been a member of the NC Bar Association Dispute Resolution Committee/Section since its inception, and is a past Section Chair. He chaired the joint Section-Commission committee responsible for the 2012 updating and rewriting of Alternative Dispute Resolution in North Carolina, A New Civil Procedure, serving as an author and co-editor of the book. In 2004, the Section presented him with the Peace Award. He was a consultant with the NC Bar Association's Mediated Settlement Conference and District Court Arbitration Pilot Programs. He co-chaired the committees that developed the Family Financial Settlement and Clerk Mediation Programs. Mr. Laney is certified as a Superior Court, Family Financial and Clerk Program mediator by the NC Dispute Resolution Commission and as a practitioner member of the Academy of Family Mediators.

    Mr. Laney received his B.A. from NC State University and his J.D. from the University of North Carolina School of Law.

    Click here for more information about Mr. Laney.

  • Mary Grace Roberson Linthicum

    Mary Grace Roberson Linthicum represents the North Carolina Industrial Commission as an Assistant Attorney General with the North Carolina Department of Justice. She provides a full range of legal support to the North Carolina Industrial Commission, including the enforcement of civil penalties assessed against non-insured employers. In addition to representing the N.C. Industrial Commission, she handles criminal appeals for the State of North Carolina as assigned by the North Carolina Attorney General. Prior to joining the Attorney General’s Office, Grace worked for Oxner + Permar, PLLC in Greensboro, North Carolina, as a workers’ compensation and social security disability attorney. Grace earned her J.D. from Charlotte School of Law and undergraduate degree in Business Administration with a focus in Accounting from Campbell University. Most recently, Grace served as a keynote speaker for the North Carolina Women’s Leadership Conference.

    Click here for more information about Grace.

  • Annemarie Pantazis

    Annemarie Pantazis is a board certified workers’ compensation specialist with the Wilder Pantazis Law Group in Charlotte, NC. She earned her B.A. from William & Mary in 1994 and her J.D. from Wake Forest in 1999, where she was a published member of the Law Review and Chief Justice of the Moot Court Board. She served two terms on the NCAJ Board of Governors and served as Chair of the Workers’ Compensation Section. She currently serves on the NC State Bar workers’ compensation specialization committee, which drafts and grades the specialization exam. She also currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Workplace Injury Law & Advocacy Group (WILG), which is a nationwide organization of workers’ compensation advocates. She received WILG’s rising star award, the Charlotte Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Award, Super Lawyers recognitions of Top 25 Lawyers in Charlotte, Top 100 Lawyers in N.C., Top 50 Women Lawyers in N.C., and Best Lawyers-Workers’ Compensation Claimant’s Lawyer of the Year Award.

    Click here for more information about Annemarie.

  • Daniel C. "Dan" Pope Jr.

    Daniel C. "Dan" Pope Jr. is Of Counsel with Wilson Ratledge, PLLC in Raleigh, NC. Prior to joining Wilson Ratledge, he was the president of Brooks, Stevens & Pope, PA, a workers’ compensation defense firm in Raleigh, NC. Prior to joining Brooks, Stevens & Pope, Mr. Pope served as law clerk to two Industrial Commission Chairs, Ernest Pearson and William Stephenson. He is Board Certified by the North Carolina State Bar as a Specialist in Workers’ Compensation Law and concentrates his practice in the representation of employers. Mr. Pope is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association (Workers’ Compensation Section), the 10th North Carolina Judicial District Bar, the North Carolina State Bar, the Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States, and the Eastern and Western District of North Carolina United States District Court Bars. He was admitted as a Fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers in 2017 where he serves on the KidsChance committee. He has lectured on workers’ compensation and related issues for the North Carolina Bar Association, the North Carolina Industrial Commission’s Educational Conference, the Florida Workers’ Compensation Institute, and the National Business Institute. He served on the North Carolina Industrial Commission’s Opioid Task Force in 2017 and 2018, and currently co-chairs the Workers’ Compensation Subcommittee of the North Carolina State Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member of the North Carolina Occupational Safety & Health Education Resource Center, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He received his undergraduate degree in English Literature from North Carolina State University in 1985 and his law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1988.

    Click here for more information about Mr. Pope.

  • Robert Sagrillo

    Robert Sagrillo is the president of national accounts and settlement consulting with NuQuest in Longwood, FL. He is a highly-respected professional in the Medicare set-aside arena and was one of the first Medicare set-aside advisors in the country. As an attorney and senior consultant for NuQuest – a leading provider of Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) compliance solutions – Mr. Sagrillo draws on his expertise in public benefits, trust and estate planning, and tax to advise his clients on the best and most cost-effective way to maximize benefits for claimants while minimizing the overall cost to and liability of insurance companies and employers. Many of the nation’s largest self-insured employers and workers’ compensation insurance carriers turn to Mr. Sagrillo regularly for consultation.

    Click here for more information about Mr. Sagrillo.

  • James Taylor, M.D.

    James Taylor, M.D. is a North Carolina licensed physician, certified in anesthesiology by the American Board of Anesthesiology. He is also a specialist in pain medicine. Dr. Taylor is an owner and president of Integrated Pain Solutions, PLLC, which operates seven pain clinics in eastern North Carolina. The clinics see over 4,000 patients per month. Dr. Taylor is also the owner and CEO of Carolina Medical Investments, LLC, a research and development company that produces CBD and other cannabinoid products under the brand name “ritualx.” Dr. Taylor received his medical degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine. He completed his residency at the University of Utah, and internship at St. Mary’s Hospital in California. Dr. Taylor is married, has three children, and lives in Cary.

    Click here for more information about Dr. Taylor.

  • Uta Marie Zacharias

    Uta Marie Zacharias, Senior Claims Counsel, joined Lawyers Mutual in 2018. Prior to joining Lawyers Mutual, Uta worked as Senior Subrogation Counsel at Investors Title Insurance Company since 2010. She came to Investors Title from LandAmerica in Richmond, Virginia, where she served six years as Associate Claims Counsel. Uta also practiced for several years in law firms in Charlotte, N.C. and Richmond, V.A., where she focused on real estate, general business transactional matters, employment and immigration law. Uta is licensed in North Carolina and Virginia. She is a member of the Wake County Real Property Lawyers Association.

    Click here for more information about Uta.

February 4, 2021
Thu 1:25 PM EST

Duration 3H 25M

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