My topic will focus on working with non-English speaking clients. As we all know, non-English speaking immigrants come to this country for many different reasons, but the vast majority end up in labor jobs: jobs that cause work comp injuries. Personally, I have represented clients from over 20 countries; in Nebraska we have a surprising number of immigrants and refugees who relocate to Nebraska for plentiful jobs and cheap housing.
As a result of this melting-pot of injured workers, my seminar presentation will focus on the Ethics of representing non-English speaking clients. Specifically, I will explain what lawyers should do when a non-English speaking client contacts the lawyer; what issues may arise during litigation; and how to handle non-English speaking clients and interpreters during legal proceedings.
I recently wrote a post about immigration status and workers compensation. You can read that post here.
I will present on opioids in workers’ compensation. I plan on spending some time discussing opioid addiction as a work-related medical condition and some of the factual and legal challenges that come with opioid use in a workers’ compensation case. I will also address digestive and bowel issues that arise with opioid use and how those injuries can be covered by workers’ compensation.
Opioid addiction is a major public health and even political issue. Drug formularies are being pushed as a way to combat addiction by reducing the prescription of opioids in workers’ compensation cases. I plan on discussing why drug formularies should raise serious concerns not just from doctors, but from employees and employers. You can read my blog posts about formularies here, here and here.
Rod Rehm will be presenting on the topic of deposition preparation for plaintiffs in workers’ compensation cases. Rod is a Fellow in the College of Workers’ Compensation and has prepared hundreds of injured workers for their depositions in his long legal career. Earlier in his career Rod worked both as a prosecutor and criminal defense lawyer so he can draw on 40 plus years of litigation experience when it comes to witness preparation.
Shareholder Jon Rehm will present on whistleblower and retaliation law
Firm shareholder Jon Rehm will present on whistleblower and retaliation law to about 40 other employment lawyers at the annual Nebraska State Bar Association’s annual Labor and Employment Law Seminar. Rehm will present on this topic with Mark Fahleson, a prominent and respected employment defense attorney.
However, employees who fail to file a charge or complaint within 300 days may have a legal way to address retaliation as well.
“Nebraska courts have held that certain activities, like filing a workers’ compensation claim or opposing some criminal activities, give employees the right to sue their employer for wrongful termination. This is called the public policy exception to employment at will. These cases have a four-year statute of limitations. You can’t win attorney fees or front pay in these cases, but you can win emotional distress damages and economic damages as well. “
Though the public policy exception cases may not allow employees to collect as much in damages, sometimes they are the only remedy available for a worker, Rehm said.
“The Nebraska Fair Employment Practices Act only applies to employers with more than 15 employees. So if you work for a small employer, you can’t bring a case under that act, but you can bring it under the public policy exception. The Nebraska Fair Employment Practices Act also only applies if you oppose the illegal or unlawful conduct of your employer, not your co-workers. Under the public policy exception, you can actually bring a case for opposing the illegal or unlawful conduct of your co-workers.
“The other lesson that became evident for me in preparing for this presentation is how retaliation can seem straightforward on the surface but can be incredibly complicated. Preparing for this seminar has given me the chance to reflect on over 10 years of representing employees in retaliation cases.”
Rehm, Bennett & Moore, P.C., L.L.O., is proud to announce that Jon Rehm has become a shareholder in the firm. He has specialized in the areas of workers’ compensation, employment and personal injury law since 2005. Rehm represents employees and individuals in state and federal court as well as in front of administrative agencies.
He frequently speaks at continuing education events and has presented on workers’ compensation and employment law topics for the American Bar Association, the American Association of Justice (AAJ), the Nebraska Association of Trial Attorneys, and at the University Of Nebraska College Of Law. Rehm is active in many lawyers’ groups and was recently named to the Board of Governors for AAJ. He is also vice chair of the AAJ Workplace Injury section and serves on the Workers’ Injury Law & Advocacy Group’s Board of Directors.
Rehm currently serves as a commissioner for the Lincoln Commission on Human Rights. In the recent past, he also volunteered on the board for Houses of Hope, Inc. and as 2nd Associate Chair of the Lancaster County Democratic Party.
He is married to Abby Rehm, who teaches eighth grade English at Culler Middle School in Lincoln. They have a 6-month-old son, Russel, who makes them very happy.
Rehm, Bennett & Moore, P.C., L.L.O., represents plaintiffs in workers’ compensation, personal injury claims, Social Security disability claims, and employment law claims from offices in Omaha and Lincoln. The firm’s five lawyers have more than 90 years of combined experience, and serve clients in Nebraska, Iowa and other states with Nebraska and Iowa jurisdiction.