Expert Attorneys for Portland, OR’s SAIF Claims

Have you been dealing with the difficult aftermath of sustaining an on the job injury? Has securing workers’ compensation been a struggle? We are here to help. At Ransom, Gilbertson, Martin & Ratliff, LLP, our experienced lawyers have extensive knowledge on Oregon’s State Accident Insurance Fund (SAIF) and are committed to getting you the help you need.

Thirty-five percent of Oregon’s workforce is insured by SAIF. We have successfully handled thousands of SAIF claims. We know the ins and outs of the system and strive to guarantee SAIF treats each of our clients justly. Every resident of Oregon deserves fair treatment.

Do you have a SAIF claim? Have you been denied your rightful compensation? We can help. Here is a little background on SAIF:

SAIF’s History

Oregon’s State Accident Insurance Fund is a not-for-profit company that provides workers’ compensation insurance. When it was created many years ago, it was a state agency (by the Oregon Legislative Assembly). But, in 1980 the SAIF became America’s first public corporation that specialized in worker’s compensation insurance. SAIF has faced some scrutiny in the past few years. As a state-chartered insurance company SAIF doesn’t pay taxes! Therefore, SAIF can price the insurance policies it sells to employers aggressively, defeat competitors, and make large profits.

Although voters rejected a ballot measure (which would have abolished the corporation) in 2004, SAIF is still a hot topic; debate continues about the management practices of SAIF. Citizens and state senators have questioned the following:

  • Is SAIF’s cost savings coming at the expense of denying legitimate claims?
  • Is SAIF failing to provide documents and contracts for Sound Economic Policy?
  • Is SAIF using Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) to pressure doctors into providing less than optimal medical care?

Our Services

Do you feel SAIF has denied your legitimate claim? We understand the struggle and our experienced Oregon workers’ compensation lawyers have the skills to fight your case. We have proven many cases against SAIF and will do our best to add yours to that list. We offer experience that you can trust and offer service all over our state including the following areas:

If you need workers’ compensation in Oregon, our lawyers will help. Don’t wait to receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us for a free consultation today.

Comments (2)

  • Scott

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    I am a Police Officer for the City of Bend. I am currently assigned to the training unit. On January 22, 2015 while on duty (working as a training officer for the department) I was doing a use of force demo for the district attorney at our police station. We were doing a conflict simulation using paint balls. I was playing the role of the bad guy and the DA was the plying the role of the cop. I was 30 feet away from the DA and had a plastic knife in my hand. The demo was to show how fast a man with a knife could attack you before you can draw and shoot. I sprinted towards the DA and heard a loud pop, my leg went out and I fell to the ground. I reached down and grabbed my ankle and knew right away. I went to the hospital and was treated. I had an MRI the next day, complete Achilles tendon rupture on my left leg. The surgery was on January 29th, 2015.
    I completed therapy for 5 months.

    I missed a total of 3 days and was back to work on light duty until 09-24-15 when I was declared medically stationary. Because of my job, I was able to work mostly at my desk.

    On 11-2-15 I saw an independent medical examiner. I was in his office for less than 15 minutes. He checked my flecion, and measured my calf, and had me walk on my tippy toes (Which I can’t). He reported that my strength is a 4 out of 5. There was no measurement of strength given except to walk on my tippy toes.

    The difference between my left and right calf is about ¾ of an inch. I cannot do a single leg calf raise on my left leg. I can only get about an inch off the ground. I would estimate my calf strength at less than 40 % of my right calf.

    My flexion is very good and I have no issues there, just strength. Running is very hard because I cannot push off on my left foot and it collapses so I have this really deep hitch in my running gait.

    As a result of my injury, I was in a cast for over 12 weeks. After 12 weeks started walking on it. My ankle was weak and un-stability. It has gotten better. But because of the lack of strength and stability in my ankle, my gait has changed. As a result of the change in my gait, my left knee has had to compensate for the changes. The added pressure to my left knee has caused me more issues than the original Achilles tendon rupture. I have been in constant knee pain. Waking me up at night, not going on hikes, and limiting my exercise to yoga and now swimming. Prior to my injury I would take Celebrex 3 -4 days a month. After the surgery I take it every day, and it is not enough anymore.

    I went to see my doctor regarding my knee pain because I couldn’t take it anymore. He told me that I need a total knee replacement and there is nothing further they can do for the knee pain except cortisone shots. He gave me a cortisone shot, the first I have ever gotten, and it has been really good for the last three weeks, but it is now starting to ware off. The doctor thought that it would last a month or so.

    I called SAIF and told them that my knee, as a result of the injury, has deteriorated at a rapid pace. I knew my knee wasn’t great, but I was getting by and haven’t had a surgery in 11 years. This Achilles Tendon pushed my knee too hard and now it’s horrible. I was told that I would have to close the ankle claim and then open a separate claim for the knee.

    I am very reluctant to close me ankle for several reasons. The IME gave me a 4 out of 5 on strength. I have no idea how he came to that number. I would give it a 2 or less. I can’t walk on my tippy toes because my calf cannot support the weight. I don’t dispute the flexion, that is very good. But to be “Medically Stationary” and this weak scares me.

    My knee is a huge issue. A knee replacement means a retirement for me. I am 49 and have 1 year until I can qualify for retirement, but that would be a very small retirement calculated at 49% of the last three years of salary. I am planning to work till I am 54.

    So I have a few questions, I have never been in this position before so I am reaching out to someone. I received a notice of closure from SAIF that says my leg is 3% disabled. I would say it is 50% -60 %. My ankle injury is partially, not totally, to blame for my knee pain. The knee replacement is a huge issue for me.

    Can you give me your opinion on this.

    Thanks for your help

    Scott

    Reply

    • Adian Martin

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      Dear Scott: Thank you for your questions. Regarding you Achilles injury, the 4/5 strength loss is not a percentage of loss. Here is what the numbers mean: 5/5: The worker retains range of motion against gravity with full resistance applied. 4/5: The worker retains range of motion against gravity with some resistance applied. 3/5: The worker retains range of motion against gravity without any resistance. 2/5: The worker retains range of motion with gravity eliminated. 1/5: The worker has evidence of slight muscle contractility; no joint motion. To make it more complicated, a 4/5 loss is 20% impairment, but that is not 20% disability. There are other rules to convert ankle impairment to disability.

      What all these rules accomplish is unfortunately to limit compensation paid by insurers/employers and this results in what I view as unfair compensation. I had an Achilles tear years ago when I was a Police officer in the Army and I remember limping around for a long time. Hopefully, you can regain your strength.

      How did you injure your knee the first time? Was it work related? Perhaps, a claim can be pursued for the knee. I would be happy to discuss this with you. Call me at 503-226-3664. Sincerely, Adian

      Reply

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