If a claimant suffers a permanent impairment from a previous industrial or non-industrial condition, a self-insured employer or insurance carrier may ask the treating physician giving a permanent impairment rating to apportion between the preexisting condition and the current industrial injury. For injuries prior to July 1, 2008 (Section 8-42-104(2) (C.R.S.), if an apportionment can be made, the self-insured employer or insurance carrier will only pay for that portion of the permanent partial impairment rating which is due to the admitted industrial accident. For injuries on or after to July 1, 2008,  when the prior impairment is due to industrial causes, the prior impairment must be documented.    If the prior condition was non-industrial, the condition must have been  identified, treated, and was independently disabling. See Section 8-42-104(2) to 6), C.R.S. (eff. 7/1/08).  Apportionment is available in permanent total disability cases if the prior injury or condition is non-industrial.  See Section 8-46-105, C.R.S.  In occupational disease cases, a rule of law announced in Anderson v. Brinkhoff, 859 P.2d 819 (Colo. 1993),  allows for apportionment of all benefits if a claimant’s disability is due to a combination of industrial and non-industrial conditions. Apportionment of benefits is a complex but important part of a physician’s and Administrative Law Judge’s job.

 

 

Cairns & Associates, P.C.

3900 E. Mexico Avenue
Suite 300
Denver, CO 80210

Phone (303) 481-6345
Fax (866) 277-0355

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