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4 years 3 months ago #19514 by Gerbera
Gerbera replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....
Hi Shadycut,

Let me first say. I understand what you are saying. This is my third civil suit. You will never get out of it feeling compensated. Unfortunately, the system is aimed at giving little so the insurance company pays less. Thus why victims are treated as liars and perpetrators. Here in SA the state government has just amended our system to one of no fault. Meaning any person injured in an accident can get compensated ie if you are drunk and slam into someone and you get hurt you can claim. Each party perpetrator or victim must personally pay the first $570 of their medical fees.

The schedule for compensable pain and suffering has just gone up code word injuries like mine even though they last and impact your earning and working capacity would not register and I would be paid nothing.

The lawyers are now on a schedule of fees which is worse than legal aid. Thus if you are lucky enough to get a lawyer it will probably be a junior or you will have to do most of the work yourself and will be rushed into settling because basically no lawyer could even pay their overheads let alone their salary on such a small scale of fees. This means basically good luck getting anything which is exactly what the government want. Not only have we seen lawyers moving out of the field many have been retrenched but we have also seen many pain clinics and doctors now refusing to treat such patients because basically they don't have a guarantee of being paid and most people can't afford them privately. The scheme was introduced to save the insurance companies money so that the registration fees paid by us South Aussies can be put towards a disability fund. It basically leaves people like me screwed. That said, if the guy that hit me was more injured and his injuries hit the scale he would be compensated.

As for lawyers, hunt around. Never go to one that says you will get in excess of $100,000 unless you are seriously injured. Get them to explain to you the compensation pain schedule from day one. If it sounds to good to be true then it will be. Be careful of no win no fee and shop around like you would a bank for the best fees. If you have been made promises and at the end of the day end up with basically nothing then I suggest you contact your local law society and lodge a complaint. The law society will ask the lawyer to hand over your file and will have someone on their board consider the file and basically assess the reasonableness of their fees and if they have overcharged you they risk disciplinary action and of course giving you a greater cut. If the lawyer has not explained to you early on that anything medicare pays for you, you will have to repay to medicare out of your claim when it settles then that certainly is an issue for the law society.

Remember lawyers are like everyone else they just hold a law degree they are not gods nor people to fear or feel intimidated by. You pay their fees so they work for you. You can also change lawyers at any time during your proceedings if you don't feel you have a working relationship with them. If you do so they may not release the file until you pay their outstanding fees. If you think you will report them to the law society then contact the society first to negotiate the release of your file without having to first pay their fees.

PS most lawyers are on a salary and although society believe they are on good salaries ie of $75k or above the majority are not. They may charge you a fortune per hour but many take home less than 10% of their hourly rate. The owners of the firms are the people driving the expensive cars and educating their kids at private schools. Reality is you often just get an actor sitting in front of you, someone trained to act in the manner to which society portrays lawyers to act because people want lawyers that appear heartless and cut throat thinking an aggressive lawyer will get a better result. Reality is they are public servants working to make someone else rich. That said, there are some really good ones out there usually in the smaller hidden away firms so just shop around and get a first free interview every time then go with the one that feels right for you and never be afraid to change. No different to buying a car really. What I have found is it is the medicos, the report writers ($400 plus per report) making the real money in these matters just like my pain clinic that seem to think I am getting a pot of gold at the end of this matter thus suggesting we can run a tab for their fees which I can pay at the end. Clearly, their patients have never told them what they have actually been awarded.

I hope things improve for you health wise and claim wise. Me I know what I get will be pathetic and nothing will ever give me back my pain free body, my damaged career, my loss of future income or remove from my memory how awful the medicos and insurance company have made me feel during this process, money just can't buy that. :)

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4 years 3 months ago #19515 by Gerbera
Gerbera replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....
Ps Shadycut

If you are in receipt of government benefits best chat to your lawyer about how your compensation may affect it before you get yet another surprise.

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4 years 3 months ago #19535 by mcjimjam
mcjimjam replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....
Hi, my name is James. I am 23 and I live near Geelong in regional Vic. I have been having an awful time with lower back pain since July/August last year. I have had a lumbosacral xray which didn't show any abnormality and later a thoracic CT scan which showed multiple Schmorl's Nodes. My GP diagnosed me with Scheuermann's Osteochondrosis based on that. I've been seeing a physio and an exercise physiologist and doing the exercises they prescribe. I have a routine I do in the hydrotherapy pool every other day and one I do at home every day.

I take Panadeine Forte 2 tabs, 4 times a day which helps some. I was taking Mobic as well but it has torn up my stomach so I stopped. It didn't seem to help anyway. Despite these measures I am still in more pain than I can live with. On the recommendation of my psychiatrist, physiologist, physiotherapist and a stand-in GP I saw I am going to ask my GP for a referral to a pain specialist.

I am meek and shy and not good at communicating just how much I am suffering to my doctors. I think that has been my problem. Either way I feel like if something doesn't change soon I am going to need to go live in a mental hospital to keep me safe from doing something stupid. Anyway, thanks for listening. This place seems pretty great. Pain is so isolating. It is good that sufferers have come together to support each other.

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  • Mary
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4 years 3 months ago #19537 by Mary
Mary replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....
Hi James and welcome to the forum.

I must say that I have never heard of Scheuermann's Osteochondrosis, so I must do some reading on it! It doesn't sound as though it is easy to manage. You are doing all the right things, but be aware that you can actually overdo the exercise when you have chronic pain. It is really important to exercise, but it needs to be done so that you are not stirring your nervous system up even more. As I have said to others, try to see people who have experience with chronic pain.

A pain specialist may be able to offer you some other alternatives, so hopefully you will have some more options available to you. Try and make sure that he/she knows exactly how much pain you are in because you don't have to hold it in. They will have heard it all, trust me :)

I agree with you; pain is so isolating and it can make you go to a very dark place. Please let your doctors know exactly how you are feeling because depression is very common in people with chronic pain and it is treatable.

Stay in touch with us all and let us know how you are doing.

Mary

Not every day is a good day, but there is good in every day.

"“It’s delightful when your imaginations come true, isn’t it?” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

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  • Peter
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4 years 3 months ago - 4 years 3 months ago #19538 by Peter
Peter replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....
Hi James,

Welcome to our Forum.

Mate, it is very understandable for you to feel the way you do. When we have our worlds turned upside down by pain, we start losing faith in our futures and end up frightened about the absence of any prospects of any kind of future at all. But believe me, you can get some control back and be in charge of your pain condition. There are many people who are able to get back a sizeable chunk of normal life, with the right kind of help to manage their pain condition.

I don't know much about your condition, but having a spine that is shot like I do, I am pretty much up with what spinal pain is all about.
James, if you're in the right frame of mind, in other words, you want to learn how to manage your pain better and learn to live with it, instead of stressing yourself out looking for a cure, then ask your GP to refer to you a Multi-disciplinary Pain Clinic, where you will see a pain specialist as well as a psych and physio. These guys/gals are teaching current best practice therapies to help you learn to self manage your pain condition, plus they will help you with the latest medicines to help you along the way.

Just seeing a pain specialist too, will also get you the latest medicines, but some pain specialists aren't up with the latest self-management techniques and information. So give this specialist a try and if you think it hasn't been worth it, then ask your GP for a referral to the pain clinic.

Mate, you spend as much time in here talking as you like and remember, you are worth more than any other human being on this planet, to YOU and your family, so never ever walk near the edge of the abyss, lest you slip and fall.

We have people in the forum sometimes in the middle of the night who can't sleep, just reading away, sometimes posting. You can strike up a conversation with them using the private message system too if you find yourself in here at night.

Don't ever feel you that it is all too much, even if relief is very very slow. Once you learn more about the pain you suffer, you will be surprised how your brain will adapt to the pain and it will not stress you out as much.

Anyway, keep talking and take care!


Peter

I wish the ring (this Chronic Pain) had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened. (Frodo Baggins)

So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide, is what to do with the time that is given to us. (Gandalf the Grey)
Last Edit: 4 years 3 months ago by Peter.

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4 years 3 months ago #19541 by mcjimjam
mcjimjam replied the topic: Introduce Yourself Here.....

Mary wrote: Hi James and welcome to the forum.

I must say that I have never heard of Scheuermann's Osteochondrosis, so I must do some reading on it! It doesn't sound as though it is easy to manage. You are doing all the right things, but be aware that you can actually overdo the exercise when you have chronic pain. It is really important to exercise, but it needs to be done so that you are not stirring your nervous system up even more. As I have said to others, try to see people who have experience with chronic pain.

A pain specialist may be able to offer you some other alternatives, so hopefully you will have some more options available to you. Try and make sure that he/she knows exactly how much pain you are in because you don't have to hold it in. They will have heard it all, trust me :)

I agree with you; pain is so isolating and it can make you go to a very dark place. Please let your doctors know exactly how you are feeling because depression is very common in people with chronic pain and it is treatable.

Stay in touch with us all and let us know how you are doing.

Mary

Thanks for the welcome, Mary :) The radiologist/my GP called it scheuermann's osteochondrosis but I believe another term for it is juvenile disc disorder. Perhaps that is the more common term.

I am pretty careful not to do more exercise than my physio has recommended. I was swimming after my hydro sessions but we decided that was causing pain and I stopped it. With the increased pain levels of late, I have been doing the bare minimum. It is a struggle to talk myself into doing any type of exercise on bad days but I've been told that the exercise is what will get me better so that is a strong motivator.

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