T.P. and Zoom and Psych Claims, Oh My!

Tuesday, June 9th 2020 at 02:00 PM Eastern Time

Produced by the National Workers' Compensation Defense Network,  in partnership with the WorkersCompensation.com Center for Education Excellence.

As we continue to gather evidence on the long-term effects, if any, of COVID-19 claims, there is increasing concern that the psychiatric elements of COVID-19 may present the greatest exposure for employers and insurers.  Without question, the collective anxiety of the nation is at a level not seen since World War II.  Unsurprisingly then, whether psychiatric impairments stem from actual COVID-19 diagnoses, or merely “fear of” claims, we can expect psychological issues to manifest in a significant percentage of claims.   Join our panel for a discussion of compensability of COVID-19 psychiatric claims, potential exposure for them, and best practices in defending against these claims. 


Bert Randall is the President of Franklin & Prokopik, a regional law firm with offices covering Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C., and he is based out of the Baltimore, Maryland office.

Bert’s marketing director adds that he is a former President of the National Workers’ Compensation Defense Network, is a fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers, serves on the Larson’s National Workers’ Comp Advisory Board, and has been recognized by Best Lawyers in the WC and Employment Law practice areas.   Additionally, she says that he has testified before the Maryland General Assembly and serves as General Counsel to some of Maryland’s largest trade associations.  She also says that he talks a lot.  

Bert, however, says he likes long walks on the beach, hates rude people, and has never inhaled.  He would also like to clarify that “talks a lot” means that he lectures extensively across the country and has been quoted in many legal and trade publications. 

Elizabeth Connellan Smith practices in the areas of workers’ compensation, labor, and employment law counseling and litigation.  Her articles on workers’ compensation law have appeared in various local and national publications and she regularly lectures on employment law topics.   Beth’s practice includes representing clients with diverse employment-related concerns, including in proceedings pending before the Maine Human Rights Commission, the Maine Unemployment Commission, the Maine Workers' Compensation Board, and the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. Beth was graduated cum laude from Bowdoin College in 1987, and was graduated in 1992 from the University of Maine School of Law.

Beth is the Maine member of the National Workers’ Compensation Defense Network, and is Board Secretary of that organization.  Beth is currently a conference planning member of the ABA Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section’s Workers’ Compensation Standing Committee and she is a Fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers.

Dill Battle is a Member at Spilman Thomas & Battle, and Chair of the firm's Workers' Compensation Practice Group. His primary areas of practice are workers' compensation, employment relations and counseling, product liability litigation, and commercial litigation. He regularly defends employers in workers' compensation claims related to workplace injuries, occupational disease, occupational pneumoconiosis and hearing loss. Mr. Battle defends employment discrimination claims in federal and state courts and advises employers on leave policies and other employment matters. Mr. Battle is a Fellow in the College of Workers' Compensation Lawyers. He is AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell and was nominated by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America in the area of Workers' Compensation Law - Employers. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia and his law degree from West Virginia University College of Law.



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