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Ilene Stacey King

Ilene Stacey King

Law Office of Ilene Stacey King
  • Workers' Compensation
  • South Carolina
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Summary

After practicing for over 30 years as a member of a firm, in January 2016, I went solo! I am proud to continue to provide knowledgeable and experienced representation to injured workers in South Carolina Workers' Compensation claims. There's never a fee just to talk to me and see if I can help!

Practice Area
  • Workers' Compensation
Fees
  • Free Consultation
    Consultations are often able to be handled by phone and are always free. If you're worried or confused, I'm just a call or email away - get answers to your questions today!
  • Contingent Fees
    All workers' compensation cases are handled on a contingency fee basis. There is no cost up front so there is no need to worry about being able to afford legal representation.
  • Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
    Call to discuss my reasonable fees for wills, power of attorney, healthcare power of attorney and living wills.
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
New Jersey
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New York
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South Carolina
Languages
  • English: Spoken, Written
Professional Experience
Attorney/Owner
Law Office of Ilene Stacey King
- Current
Attorney/Head of Workers' Compensation Department
Turnipseed & Associates
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Attorney
Thornton Law Firm
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Attorney
Hanna Law Firm
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Education
New York Law School
J.D. (1982)
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Rutgers University - Newark
M.A. (1979) | Political Science
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Honors: Political Science Honor Society
Ramapo College
B.A. (1977) | Political Science
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Professional Associations
Injured Workers' Advocates
Member; President 2001-2002
- Current
South Carolina State Bar # 003493
Member
- Current
Websites & Blogs
Website
Law Office of Ilene Stacey King
Legal Answers
52 Questions Answered

Q. Should I have filed a civil lawsuit instead of a workers comp claim for a TFCC injury and surgery, details below!
A: From your question, I assume playing hockey is your job. That would have to be true for you to have a workers' comp claim for your injury. If you have a workers' comp claim (in other words, if you were injured while working) then workers' comp would be your only remedy. You would not have a civil lawsuit against your employer. If playing while injured made your injury worse, that is part of your workers' comp claim. A second surgery will mean you are entitled to continuing medical treatment until healed from the second surgery (it's called MMI - maximum medical improvement) and payment for additional time out of work. If you have a permanent problem from your injury you are entitled to be compensated for that (the rules are complicated as to how this works) and if the permanency is worse due to the second surgery, the extent of permanency will be part of your permanency compensation. Again, this is complicated, so speak with your lawyer about how it works.
Q. What are my options for a 3rd surgery on the same shoulder when dr.said he don't after 2 surgeries
A: I can only give you a very general answer as more information is needed to give you a specific answer. In general, the workers' comp carrier has to provide treatment that is recommended by the authorized treating physician. No one can force a doctor to do a surgery he/she does not want to do. If the authorized treating physician does not want to do another surgery, you could seek a second opinion with another specialist. You might be able to get the carrier to provide a second opinion, or you might have to get one on your own. If a second opinion doctor thinks you need a third surgery and the workers' comp carrier refuses, you could have a hearing for a workers' comp commissioner to make a decision. Sometimes a third opinion is ordered as a sort of "tie breaker". I note that you are in North Carolina but your question is for South Carolina. My answer applies only to a South Carolina workers' comp claim. The answer may be different if you actually have a North Carolina case. If you do not already have an attorney, you should consider having representation. A shoulder injury with 2 surgeries already is pretty serious and the issue regarding a 3rd surgery is probably not one you should try to handle on your own. If you do already have a lawyer, speak with your lawyer about your options. Your lawyer would have the most information on your claim to give you an answer based on your particular situation.
Q. independent contractor or subcontractor for workman’s comp
A: Are you a homeowner or property owner building a shed on your property, or are you in the business of building sheds? If building sheds something you do as part of your business, then you might be considered a general contractor. If you are a property owner hiring a company to build a shed for you on your property, and building sheds is not part of your business, then you are not a general contractor. If you are a general contractor and the sub does not carry workers' comp, then you have workers' comp liability. If you are a property owner hiring a company to build a shed for you, you do not have workers' comp liability. You do not have employees to cover as the employees of the company building the shed for you are not your statutory employees (i.e., they are not deemed employees by way of your relationship with their employer). The company you hire is liable for injuries to their employees. If they should have workers' comp coverage and do not, they are still liable (and subject to fines). If they do not have to have workers' comp coverage, they are liable for their own negligence. Your liability is as a property owner and your homeowners or other liability insurance covering your property would be the applicable insurance. You would only be liable for an injury to someone getting hurt on your property if you were negligent in some way. That doesn't mean you can't be sued - it's a question of whether you could be successfully sued. So, if you are a property owner and not in the business of building sheds, then what you need to be sure you have is homeowners or other applicable property liability insurance - not workers' comp. If you are in the business of building sheds, then you should consider getting workers' comp coverage for subs you hire.
Q. WCI is refusing to pay for the surgery that the doctor they sent my husband to has recommended. What are our options?
A: Your husband needs an experienced workers' compensation lawyer to force the insurance company to do what they are supposed to do. If the authorized physician recommends surgery, the insurance company has to provide the surgery. If they refuse, a lawyer would request a hearing to have a workers' compensation commissioner order the insurance company to do what the doctor says needs to be done. The insurance company could try getting a second opinion and then if your husband disagreed with the second opinion, a hearing could be requested for a commissioner to decide which doctor to go with. Sometimes they order a third opinion "tie breaker", depending on who each of the doctors are who have already given opinions. What the insurance company can not do is simply disregard the opinion of the authorized treating physician and dictate treatment all on their own without a doctor's approval. It is especially troubling that the authorized doctor says physical therapy will make things worse - the insurance company really has no business trying to have him do PT and I think a commissioner would agree. Unfortunately, the slow authorization is not all that unusual or out of line and neither is making your husband come in and sit at a desk (unless he's written out of work completely), but to blatantly disregard the authorized physician and attempt to dictate the treatment is not acceptable. Your husband need a lawyer.
Q. I fell at work on Friday, was in a little pain but ok. Now it's Sunday, can I go to ER and file WC on Mon.?
A: In general, the workers' comp insurance carrier will only pay for treatment that they or the employer authorize. It's not a question of papers being filed but of approval before your go. There is an exception for true emergency treatment. If you don't get approval ahead of time, the ER visit may or may not be considered a true emergency. Your best bet is to try to get approval from your employer before you go to the ER. The employer may tell you to instead go to somewhere like a Doctor's Care. As long as the employer tells you it is ok to go, the workers' comp insurance carrier should honor that and pay it. Once the claim is reported, be sure to continue to get authorization for treatment. For example, if the ER or Doctor's Care refer you to a specialist, you will need approval from the workers' comp insurance carrier to see the specialist and they will tell you who to go to. If you have a serious injury that will require ongoing care or cause you to miss time from work, you should consider having representation on your claim.
Q. Does SC workers comp ask for settlement money back for an accident that i wasn't at fault for?
A: Yes. The workers' comp insurance company has a lien by law on your settlement money from your civil law suit arising from the same accident. It doesn't matter that you were not at fault. Actually, if you were at fault, there probably would not be a civil law suit settlement; you are getting a settlement because you were not at fault. Workers' comp is no fault coverage and they are entitled to recover the amounts they paid to you from the at fault party. In fact, if you did not bring a civil suit against the at fault party, workers' comp could bring a suit in your place. However, they do not get back 100%. There are ways to reduce the amount they get back. Talk to your lawyer about that.
Q. I had my mmi August and it’s December and I just got my mmi rating from lawyer which I didn’t like the doctor said I
A: Talk to your lawyer about whether a second rating opinion would be worthwhile. There are several considerations. The insurance company will not pay for another rating. Your lawyer would have to send you for another rating which can be very expensive and, ultimately, the cost would be yours. You'd either pay up front or the cost would come out of your settlement. Your lawyer may feel that this is a reasonable rating for your injury based on your lawyer's experience and expertise. Clients often feel that their ratings are too low, but the rating may very well be in line with the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment - the book that doctors use and that the SC Workers' Compensation Commission goes by for ratings. The Commission often gives greater weight to the opinion of the authorized treating physician, so a second rating opinion doesn't always help. Also, keep in mind that awards and settlements are based on "disability" rather than just the rating. Impairment is strictly medical while disability is based on other factors and is a legal concept. Disability is almost always greater (higher) than the impairment. Your lawyer can explain this to you in more detail. It is not uncommon to need a second opinion for a rating but your best source of advice on pursuing this is your lawyer who has the greatest knowledge of the facts of your particular case.
Q. Is it necessary to hire a lawyer for my workers' compensation claim?
A: You are not required to have a lawyer but if you have more than a minor injury you will very probably benefit from having representation. Some things to be considered are whether the claim is admitted or denied, the complexity of the legal issues involved, and the nature and extent of the injury, medical treatment, lost time, and permanent disability. A free consultation can help you determine whether you would be better off having a lawyer.
Q. My father just had his work comp case closed, but he cannot meet the requirements for his job because of the injury.
A: By closed, do you mean he has settled his claim? Does he have a lawyer? If he has settled his claim, his options may depend on how the claim was settled. Depending on the circumstances, there may not be much else he can do except apply for social security disability. If he has not settled his claim and does not have a lawyer, he should not settle his claim until he speaks with an experienced workers' compensation attorney. He should take advantage of a free consultation to discuss his options. He should reach out as soon as possible.
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Law Office of Ilene Stacey King
1803 Hampton Street
COLUMBIA, SC 29201
USA
Cell: (803) 413-8163