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What to Expect 

If you become a client of ours, what should you expect? How long will your case take? How can you help? All great questions. Navigating legal matters is confusing and complex, and everyone comes in with different background and expectations. To help set the stage for potential clients still exploring if you want our help with your case, and for new clients to better understand how we and the legal systems operate and how that might affect you, we compiled this list of expectations for new clients to help us all get on the same page. To our current clients, thank you for trusting GG&F to help you with your case, and we look forward to serving you.

  • Living Out Our Mission

    FULL FIRM REPRESENTATION: When you retain GG&F, you hire our entire law firm, not just one attorney or office. We believe a collaborative approach lets you benefit from our collective knowledge and experience, and ensures that there is always someone available to assist you. You will most likely speak with many team members at GG&F over the course of your case.

    THOROUGH INVESTIGATION OF CLAIMS: Your case is important! It is not something to be rushed. Often times a case develops over time and we want to make sure we fully vet every issue as it arises. Our goal is the best result, not the fastest result, so we ask for your patience. Your investment of time will yield better results.

    CERTIFIED SPECIALISTS: The State Bar of California distinguishes specialists in various fields of law. Achieving this certification requires years of experience, proof of a vast knowledge of the field, and professional recommendations. While only 5% of attorneys in Workers’ Compensation attain Certified Specialization in their field, we have several certified specialists at GG&F. Your case is truly being handled by experts.

  • How The Legal System Works

    SLOW!!! Did we mention slow? Unfortunately, most cases move at a….glacial… pace, LITERALLY, the speed of a glacier. While we wish this were not the norm, and we work diligently to help you get the benefits you deserve as quickly as possible, it can take much longer than anticipated to bring your case to a conclusion. Please be prepared at the outset for the long haul and know that we are doing our best to battle forward.

    OTHER BENEFITS: We understand that waiting a long time for benefits you need today can be stressful, frustrating and financially devastating. Thankfully, there are several other resources available to you while you are waiting for a resolution of your claim. These benefits are described more fully in a separate handout, but include state disability insurance, Social Security Disability insurance, long term disability insurance, disability retirement plans, among others. Please review our handout to better understand your rights and what resources are available to you.

    NO GUARANTEES: While we do everything in our power to serve as your advocate and leave no stone unturned, not every case is successful. We will do everything under the law to put your case in the best position as possible, but understand that there may be results that are outside of our control.

  • What Can You Do

    There are actually ways you can help during this process!

    NOTIFY – Notify your case worker if your phone, email, or address change so we can keep connected and notify you of relevant court dates and your need to appear.

    REPORT – Keep your case worker appraised of any change in your condition or any major developments.

    THINK – Be aware! When you file a claim, you need to know that your activities may be under scrutiny. Think before you post in social media – the defense will access your social media posts. Think when you are outside performing activities; there may be someone investigating or videotaping your comings and goings. It is always important to maintain consistency between your actions and what you claim are limitations on your activities.

    UNDERSTAND – We work extremely hard on all of our clients’ cases. We ask that you be understanding that we may not be immediately available when you contact us. Attorneys are often at Court or in depositions and meetings. Case workers are engaged in activities and calls with various clients throughout the day. However, your case is important. It is our goal to respond back to you within one business day. If after that time you do not get a response, feel free to reach out.

    APPEAR – It is time consuming and expensive to set up examinations and hearings. When your attendance is requested, we ask that you attend on time. In the event that you are unable to attend for some reason or have questions concerning your attendance, please immediately inform our office.

    PARTICIPATE – Your case requires your help. You may be asked to fill out forms, choose medical providers, etc. This is done for your benefit. We ask that you assist us so that we can do our part. Your involvement is crucial to a successful claim.

  • Communication

    CASE WORKERS: When you first become our client, you will have one of our case workers assigned to your case. Your case worker is available to answer your daily questions throughout your case, and your case worker will be conferring with your attorney as/if needed. Though there will always be a designated team member working on your case, and this may be your case worker to start, that may rotate to balance loads and give your case the best attention and different perspectives, so your assigned case worker may likely shift throughout your case. Rest assured our team members are trained and able to access and assist with your case file.

    LAW FIRM’S ROLE: Our office is here as your advocate to inform you of your rights, guide you as you navigate the complicated systems, and help you obtain benefits which may help cover your medical bills. However, we are not doctors.  Our role is to advise you of your legal rights, and legal consequences of health care decisions, so that you can make an informed decision about your case. But ultimately it is your decision: you should be working with your doctors to make medical decisions to best support your health care needs.

    WE’RE STILL WORKING!! Just because you haven’t heard from us doesn’t mean we are not working hard on your case! Think of us like a duck who glides seamlessly on the water but has legs spinning a mile a minute underneath. We are frequently reviewing your medical records and asking questions of your medical providers and evaluators, sending and responding to correspondence and calls from the insurance carrier and their counsel, searching for and gathering necessary evidence, attending depositions and hearings. So do not assume that our lack of contact means a lack of activity in your file.

    CONTACT INFO: When you do need to reach out to us, the best ways to contact us are by phone at (805) 243-2179">(805) 243-2179through the Case Status app, or by email at workcomp@ghitterman.com.

    CASE STATUS APP: We now have an app for our clients to stay apprised of their case as it progresses and have easier avenues to communicate with us. Active GG&F clients can download the app from the App Store for iPhone or the Google Play Store for Android. You can also access Case Status (our app company) online. Once your phone number has been verified in Case Status, you will be able to view the status of your case at any time, quickly and easily message your case management team via the app or text message, and stay updated on the most recent developments in your case.

  • What Should I Expect?

    Workers’ compensation cases can take a long time to resolve. We’ve created a timeline that shows you an approximation of what your case might look like.

    TIMELINE

    CASE STATUS

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