On June 15, Matthiesen, Wickert & Lehrer, S.C. (MWL) announced the unveiling of its new website – a completely reworked, state-of-the-art, interactive, and encyclopedic subrogation tool which promises to make your subrogation responsibilities even easier and more effective. It has been two years in the making, and we are proud of the finished product – a huge functional and aesthetic improvement to the world’s most heavily-trafficked law firm website and the country’s most-utilized subrogation and training resource. The new website has many new and exciting features like increased functionality, more user-friendly features, easier-to-find helpful subrogation information, and a more streamlined and secure file referral portal. In this article, we will outline some of the new and improved features of our new website. Feel free to click on any of the links within this article to go directly to that feature or page on our new website.
INTERACTIVE MAP: LAWS BY STATE
The INTERACTIVE MAP: LAWS BY STATE feature has always been the most utilized feature of our website. The map allows the subrogation professional to click on any state and instantly have access to the subrogation law and other information which affects successful subrogation in that state, such as Statute of Limitations, contributory negligence/comparative fault, Med Pay/PIP subrogation, deductible reimbursement, Made Whole Doctrine, Economic Loss Doctrine, landlord/tenant subrogation, spoliation, parental liability, contribution, and the list goes on. This feature has been greatly improved. The topics have been categorized to make it easier to find what you are looking for and 20+ new topics have been added to each state’s list of topics. This feature can be accessed in a variety of ways. You can click on “Laws By State” in the top menu bar, the button in the left-hand sidebar, or through the RESOURCES tab drop down menu. You can also go further down the homepage and click on the interactive map. The areas of law detailed in this Laws By State feature are updated often and provide the subrogation professional with easy and free access to materials which significantly affect the handling of subrogation files. If you want a 50-state overview of a particular area of law – so you can compare how each state handles a similar issue, you can access this information on our REFERENCE CHARTS as well.
As a full-service subrogation law firm, we take seriously our responsibility of keeping you up to date on the latest developments and decisions affecting all lines of subrogation. In an effort to keep you advised, we recommend accessing our SUBROGATION BLOG feature. This feature will be a supplement to our very popular subrogation newsletter. In fact, our newsletter will now work hand-in-hand with this new Subrogation Blog feature. The newsletter will contain short summaries or “teasers” about relevant subrogation articles that when clicked on will bring you directly to our Subrogation Blog where you can read the entire article or view other articles of interest already posted on our Subrogation Blog. You can get to our Blog by clicking on the Blog tab on the main menu bar.
REFERRING FILES TO MWL JUST BECAME EASIER AND MORE SECURE THAN EVER
Referring a subrogation file to MWL is now as easy as 1–2–3 with our new SUBROGATION REFER A FILE feature. Utilizing MWL’s file referral forms are more than merely “convenient”. They ask the relevant questions and allow us to hit the ground running once we receive the file. To use this newly updated feature, just click on the “Refer A File” button in the homepage’s top menu bar or left-hand sidebar button. Referring a file can now be accomplished in three easy steps:
Step One: Select your loss type from the drop-down menu and provide your contact information.
Step Two: Provide as much information as possible on the file you are referring. This will assist MWL in evaluating your file in a prompt and efficient manner.
Step Three: This step allows you to attach your file, no matter the size, and submit it to MWL for evaluation. Just click the Browse button to select the documents from your system that you want to submit. Once you submit your file using this feature, you will receive an e-mail confirmation that will contain the information you entered into the File Referral Form and a list of the attachments, which can be saved to your computer to be memorialized in your activity log as part of your claim file. Submitting documents in this step is optional. If you prefer, you can submit the File Referral Form and then send the file under separate cover in whatever manner you choose. Rest assured that MWL has taken all precautions to ensure that all data that is transferred to MWL through this website feature is secure and encrypted so that it cannot be read or seen by anyone else.
For those who chose not to refer files via the new “Refer A File” feature, we still have our traditional PDF FILE REFERRAL FORMS, which have also been updated and are now more user-friendly. You can access our PDF File Referral Forms via our main Refer A File page. Once you get to our PDF File Referral Form page, you can click on the File Referral Form relating to the file type you are referring (e.g., Auto Subrogation, Health Subrogation, Med Pay/PIP Subrogation, Workers’ Compensation Subrogation, etc.), complete the form to the best of your ability by entering text in the fields provided, and then the form can be printed and/or saved to your computer, scanned or faxed. In whatever manner you choose, forward the completed File Referral Form, along with the file, to the address located at the top of the form. There is no need to send a cover letter when using our File Referral Forms. If you have questions regarding referring files to MWL, please go to our FAQ page – your answer may be there.
ENHANCED CYBERSECURITY AND PRIVACY
Cyber attackers have actively begun turning their sights on insurance companies and law firms and trial lawyers have responded with nine-figure class action lawsuits against some of the industry’s biggest players. Today’s digital and tech-controlled world is expanding at the speed of light and the issues of privacy, HIPAA compliance, and data security are rife with legal implications for the unwary insurance company or third-party adjusting firm. Companies have a legal duty to rise to meet the many challenges posed by a demanding modern digital marketplace, including protecting personal information, securing proprietary data, stopping cyberattacks, and managing electronic files. But they also have a practical obligation to do so; protecting themselves in the event of a breach. Even the most sophisticated insurance company spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on cybersecurity are only as secure as the weakest subrogation vendor or law firm they utilize. Today, it is as important to ascertain that a subrogation law firm is as secure and compliant as it is successful.
MWL is working tirelessly to make sure that not only our data, but also our clients’ and their insureds’ data and claim information are kept secure from all potentially phishing efforts, cyberattacks, and security breaches. The new website boasts a secure, new file referral procedure guaranteed to keep that data secure with a 256 Bit SSL connection, an RSA 2048 encryption for stored and transmitted data, and an NIST Cybersecurity Framework (CSF) which would be the envy of Microsoft itself. And once your file is securely in MWL’s server, we go to unprecedent lengths to protect you and your insured’s sensitive information. Our stance on cyber security is directly in line with the NIST Cyber Security Framework (CSF). An article entitled “What Do You Really Know About Your Subrogation Counsel’s Cybersecurity?” details the efforts we take to ensure cybersecurity and ten questions you should be asking your current subrogation vendor..
At the heart of our new website is the largest and most thorough collection of subrogation resources found anywhere, all of which can be accessed via our RESOURCES tab on our main menu bar. You can search a decade of NEWSLETTERS for articles on every subrogation subject imaginable or our numerous PUBLISHED ARTICLES on subrogation topics that have been published in national magazines and online insurance sites across the country. This feature has been improved as we added a category filter to make it easier to find the articles you are looking for.
Under the RESOURCES tab you will also find information on our PUBLISHED BOOKS, including a link to our publisher’s website where you will find general information about the books along with purchasing information. The books can be purchased in a hard cover or digital format. The five books we have authored and published are:
- WORKERS’ COMPENSATION SUBROGATION IN ALL 50 STATES
- ERISA AND HEALTH INSURANCE SUBROGATION IN ALL 50 STATES
- FUNDAMENTALS OF INSURANCE COVERAGE IN ALL 50 STATES
- AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE SUBROGATION IN ALL 50 STATES
- WHERE’S THE BEEF? Livestock/Vehicle Collision Subrogation In All 50 States
Also under our RESOURCES tab you will find our heavily-visited REFERENCE CHARTS, the most comprehensive anthology of 50-state subrogation laws to be found anywhere. Each of our subrogation charts have a permanent link, meaning if we update a chart, the link remains the same, so for those charts you use often, feel free to create a shortcut to your desktop or add them to your favorites list – your link to that chart will remain current. These reference charts have grown to 60+ charts and include topics such as:
- Med Pay/PIP Subrogation In All 50 States
- Contributory Negligence/Comparative Fault Laws In All 50 States
- Statute of Limitations In All 50 States
- Workers’ Compensation In All 50 States
- Made Whole Doctrine In All 50 States
- Deductible Reimbursement Laws In All 50 States
- Landlord/Tenant Subrogation In All 50 States
- Health and Disability Insurance Subrogation In All 50 States
- Economic Loss Doctrine In All 50 States
- Parental Responsibility Laws In All 50 States
- Dog Bite Laws In All 50 States
- Employee Leasing Subrogation Laws In All 50 States
- Spoliation Laws In All 50 States
- Diminution of Value Cases In All 50 States
- OCIP/CCIP Subrogation in Workers’ Compensation Construction Settings For All 50 States
- Documenting Workers’ Compensation Statutory Future Credits In All 50 States
- Contribution Actions In All 50 States
At MWL we strongly believe education is the key to a successful subrogation program and the more educated and well-trained our clients are, the more productive we can be in terms of our representation and the results we can produce. MWL’s Subrogation and Insurance Litigation College provides our clients an opportunity to receive the most up-to-date training that insurance professionals can receive. Our instructors are experienced insurance litigation and subrogation trial lawyers who make the complicated understandable and easily digestible. Our SUBROGATION WEBINARS can be found clicking on the Webinars tab on the main menu bar. This page contains information on the various insurance-related subrogation webinars and seminars we offer. All of the topics on this page are organized in categories by subject and are regularly presented to our clients across the country or at national insurance conferences. Simply click on the “Watch Now For Free”, which means exactly what it says – you can click on that button to access record versions of our webinars at no cost. These recorded webinars can be viewed by one person or a whole company at the same time. Once you click on the button to view a recorded webinar, you fill out a short registration form and, after doing so, you are immediately sent an e-mail that will contain a password to view the webinar. Once you have logged into the webinar using your password, you will be able to view the webinar and download the handout for it. You only need to register for our webinars once. After you have registered, you can view the webinar as many times as you want by logging in it with your password.
The following represent a sampling of the subject areas in which we provide educational opportunities for our clients:
- Automobile Subrogation
- Health Insurance Subrogation
- Insurance Defense and Coverage
- Property Subrogation
- Subrogation Basics
- Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
Each of the above categories contains a syllabus of classes offered and a thorough description of the contents of the courses presented. For example, within the WORKERS’ COMPENSATION SUBROGATION subject area alone the following courses are contained:
- WC-0101 Introduction to Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-0201 Advanced Concepts of Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-0301 Subrogating Workers’ Compensation Across State Lines
- WC-0401 Subrogation Investigation In Workers’ Compensation Claims
- WC-0501 Documenting Future Workers’ Compensation Credits
- WC-0601 Iowa Workers’ Compensation Subrogation: Steps To Avoid Subrogation Traps
- WC-0701 Illinois Workers’ Compensation and Employer Contribution
- WC-0801 Challenges and Trends in Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-0901 Longshore & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-1101 Introduction to California Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-1102 Advanced Concepts of California Workers’ Compensation Subrogation
- WC-1103 Which Workers’ Compensation Benefits Can Be Subrogated?
MWL presents live Texas CE-accredited webinars every other month. Information on our upcoming webinars can be found on our UPCOMING EVENTS page which you can access by clicking on the Upcoming Events button on our homepage’s upper menu bar or left-hand sidebar. These live webinars are complimentary, and anyone is welcome to attend. While it is beyond our control, the Texas Department of Insurance will not provide Texas CE credits for viewing our recorded webinars – only our live webinars. For questions regarding our webinars or seminars, please see our FAQ page, your answer may be there.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION (FAQ)
We have a FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION (FAQ) page that can be accessed via our CONTACT tab on the homepage main menu bar. On this page you will find answers to questions you might have about utilizing the subrogation services of MWL, fee arrangements, file referral, such as what contents of the claim’s file should be forwarded for evaluation, our webinars, and so much more.
ASK A SUBROGATION QUESTION
We have made significant improvements to our SUBROGATION ASK A QUESTION feature. This feature can be accessed by clicking on “Ask A Question” button found in homepage’s upper menu bar and left-hand sidebar, as well as our CONTACT tab on the main menu bar. It allows MWL’s clients and friends to submit a subrogation question and receive fast and accurate answers to even the most challenging subrogation issues. We currently receive an average of 25 questions daily, and we strive to fully answer each question which lends itself to a quick e-mail answer. This has always been a popular feature of our website.
Subrogation in multiple jurisdictions remains one of the most daunting challenges in our industry, and this website feature helps you make sense of the over-lapping web of 51 different jurisdictions. It is rare, but if a submitted question requires additional information, significant research, or does not lend itself to a quick, accurate answer, we will notify you and suggest possible means of resolving the issue. Subrogation law at its essence, often boils down to legal opinions and there are many areas of subrogation law which have not yet been thoroughly developed. The subrogation industry has not always been known for investing in cases in order to establish good law and precedent. Therefore, often an answer to a question will amount to an informed opinion – rather than a black and white answer. We will let you know if that is the case.
In summary, our new website is like none other – it is a subrogation resource center with resource tools you will use on a daily basis. Links to our website appear on the desktops of thousands of insurance professionals around the world, and our research and charts are relied on throughout the industry. They will make your job as claims professionals more efficient. This is a website of the future and it’s now at your disposal – it is dedicated to our clients. We are certain you will want to bookmark this incredible, new website or save it to your desktop. Take it for a test drive. It is the one-stop-shop for answers to your questions or solutions to your subrogation needs – all made simple, secure, and accessible.