A blog by a retired Colorado attorney on legal news, views and tips on Colorado Workers Compensation and Social Security Disability. Written from the point of view of the injured or disabled worker.
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Pinnacol Privatization Again in the News
The Denver Post is reporting that business groups and others are upset with Pinnacol's ads touting the benefits of privatizing Pinnacol Assurance. It is asserted the ads violated an agreement not to lobby on the issue while the matter is under review by a task force. What the article points out is that Pinnacol is the state's insurer of last resort for high risk businesses. That is why Pinnacol was originally set up by the state of Colorado and then has grown to be the largest insurer in Colorado of workers compensation claims. This effort to privatize is not surprising. Pinnacol is large, apparently thriving, with ample funds available that in the past the state was interested in obtaining. My experience tells me that when a nonprofit becomes quite successful the entity wants to move out on its own. I saw that with Blue Cross Blue Shield when it became Anthem. There can be interest in expansion beyond the state borders and Pinnacol executives can operate unfettered by state oversight. In theory the state gets an investment apparently worth $340 million and a dividend every year. Of course Pinnacol's offers seem to vary which is, I suspect, just part of the negotiating. The real question I have is whether privatization might impair the very purpose for the state's interest which was to insure high risk ventures. The construction trades have many injuries and are costly to insure. Without state involvement might this endanger state businesses? Private insurers certainly have more freedom to operate than an entity with state oversight. Of course my other concern is valuation but that is negotiable.
"...this is the cause of my life, new hope that we will break the old gridlock and guarantee that every American -- north, south, east, west, young, old -- will have decent, quality health care as a fundamental right and not a privilege." Ted Kennedy Aug 26, 2008 (Update: June 28, 2012 the US Supreme Court upholds Obamacare)
Do We Pass the Test?
"It was once said that the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the aged; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped."
I've been living in beautiful Colorado and practicing law for over 35 years. It's been a great place to raise a family. Originally from New York I settled here, married here and raised two daughters, Jenny and Mary. I practiced near downtown Colorado Springs but now consider myself "retired" so I am not taking any more legal matters, clients or cases but I appreciate being able to help as many clients as I could for so many years. Now I especially enjoy my retirement time with family including 4 special ones...a grandson, Max, twin granddaughters, Penny and Cici and last but not least grandson Eliot. You can contact me at my email address which is email@example.com.
In the past we offered free consultations in cases but we are not taking any more legal matters or cases as retirement calls. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We've been protecting injured workers for many years and truly went the distance for many people. We made a difference for most of them and stood up for right not might. If you need an attorney I suggest you find someone where you live who offers free consultations. Also I urge you to discuss your case with an attorney if at all possible. This field is technical and complex. I would even call it tricky so seek advice from an attorney. If that is not possible call the Colorado Division of Workers Compensation customer service section for helpful information.
The information in this blog is intended to represent my personal views and opinions. It is not intended to be specific or personal legal advice which should only be obtained by a consultation with an experienced attorney. All this blog provides is general information I consider important to me. It may be of interest to others but for any advice or advisory statements consult with an attorney not a blog.
Special Personal News on Cici, our grandaughter (September 2011)
Nearly 3 years ago our grandaughter Cici had a serious medical problem. Her survival was at risk and she was deprived of oxygen because of a tragic choking/swallowing problem. It is known as an anoxic brain injury. The recovery has been challenging and slow but some progress has been made. We are thankful to be part of her recovery. I remain truly grateful for the prayers and touching support provided by so many people to my daughter and the family. We are actively committed to Cici's recovery and to her loved one's for as long as it takes. You can follow this difficult but amazing journey on my daughter's and husband Matt's Blog. Where there is life there is hope. We've had tough times but we have also seen courage and love in action for her and also for others. For examples look below.