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Brian P. McElreath

Partner

Charleston

p: 843-405-2240 f: 843-405-2240

Education

  • North Carolina State University, B.A.
  • University of North Carolina Asheville, B.A.
  • Charleston School of Law, J.D.

Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • South Carolina Court of Appeals
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • All Georgia state courts
  • Supreme Court of Georgia
  • Georgia Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina

Memberships

  • State Bar of South Carolina
  • State Bar of Georgia
  • State Bar of Virginia
  • Charleston County Bar Association
  • Savannah Bar Association
  • DOL - Joint Bar Association
  • The Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute

Recognition

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Brian is a Partner in the Charleston office of Lueder, Larkin & Hunter. His practice primarily focuses on Longshore, Defense Base Act and War Hazard Compensation Act claims and workers’ compensation and subrogation claims, and he also handles general liability and insurance coverage matters throughout Georgia and South Carolina. Brian represents a variety of employers, manufacturers, shipping companies, stevedoring companies, shipyards, and staffing companies both skilled and non-skilled, both self-insured and those with insurance carriers, group associations and third-party administrators. He has handled numerous cases in front of Federal Administrative Law Judges, the Department of Labor, the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs, Georgia Administrative Law Judges, South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commissioners, the South Carolina Full Commission Appellate Panel, and state and magistrate courts throughout South Carolina. Brian’s extensive experience handling Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation claims and workers’ compensation and subrogation matters enables him to aggressively defend clients against false or inflated claims during litigation, as well as work hand-in-hand with clients to develop policies and practices to help reduce work-related accidents. Brian handles workers’ compensation and subrogation claims throughout South Carolina and Georgia. Additionally, Brian handles Longshore, Defense Base Act and War Hazard Compensation Act claims with recent Longshore claims from South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Virginia, Louisiana, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Texas, Michigan, and Oregon. Brian litigates claims nationwide and enjoys an A.V. Preeminent peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell.  In its 2016 and 2017 editions, Best Lawyers® recognized Brian McElreath as among the leading attorneys in the country. The results were published in the 22nd and 23rd Editions of The Best Lawyers in America™ in the field of Workers’ Compensation Law – Employers.

Born and raised in Asheville, North Carolina, Brian came to Charleston to attend the Charleston School of Law, where he was a member of the Maritime Law Bulletin and obtained his J.D. after receiving a B.A. in monetary economics and finance in a joint degree program from North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Asheville. After receiving his J.D., Brian joined a Charleston based insurance defense firm in 2009. Brian joined the Charleston office of Lueder, Larkin & Hunter in 2015. Brian has presented seminars to employer and insurers throughout the Southeast on a wide array of topics ranging from the impact of the affordable care act on workers’ compensation, evidence based medicine, claim defenses and preparing your workers’ compensation case to Medicare Set-Asides.

Claimant failed to establish that incident involving the Employer's shuttle vehicle and driver resulted in the Claimant's alleged injuries. The Claimant was not entitled to invoke Section 920(a) presumption under the LHWCA -- Mr. McElreath tried this concurrent jurisdiction case before the United States Department of Labor Office of Administrative Law Judges Division of Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation. The Claimant alleged that a co-worker ran over his feet while driving the Employer's shuttle vehicle causing injuries to his left foot, right foot, back and head. The Claimant alleged that he was not at maximum medical improvement and sought compensation benefits and medical treatment for his feet, back, dizziness and headaches. The Administrative Law Judge ruled for the Employer/Carrier and found that the Claimant failed to establish that the incident involving the Employer's shuttle vehicle and driver resulted in the Claimant's alleged injuries. The Administrative Law Judge ruled that the Claimant was not entitled to invoke the Section 920(a) presumption. The Administrative Law Judge held: (1) that the Claimant was not entitled to temporary total disability for any period; (2) the Claimant was not entitled to temporary partial disability for any period; (3) the Claimant was not entitled to reasonable and necessary medical treatment relating to his feet, back, or head; and (4) the Claimant was not entitled to attorney's fees and/or legal cost from the Employer/Carrier.
Claimant was found to only have sustained an injury to his back, was not permanently and totally disabled, and was limited to the scheduled recovery for the back – Mr. McElreath tried this case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of Ameri-Force Craft Services and Commerce & Industry Insurance Company. The Claimant sustained an admitted back injury. The Claimant alleged additional injuries to the neck, shoulders, and head. The Claimant alleged that he was permanently and totally disabled. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant was limited to the remedy set forth in S.C. Code Section 42-9-30(21) and that remedy was further confined to the 25% impairment rating to the back as prescribed by the treating physician. The Commissioner also held that the Claimant did not sustain injuries to the neck, shoulders, and/or head and was not permanent and totally disabled.

Claimant did not suffer injuries to his left hand, left arm, and/or left shoulder. Claimant’s only injury was to his left ring finger and he was awarded 90% impairment rather than the 100% assigned by the treating physician – Mr. McElreath tried this case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission and the Appellate Panel of the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of International Paper Company and Sedgwick CMS. The Claimant sustained an admitted injury to his left ring finger. The Claimant alleged additional injuries to left hand, left arm, and left shoulder. The Claimant received a 100% impairment rating to the left ring finger from the treating physician. The Claimant did not attend a second opinion based on alleged lack of notice. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant did not suffer injuries to his left hand, left arm, and/or left shoulder. The Commissioner found that the Claimant was limited to the remedy set forth in S.C. Code Section 42-9-30(4) and the Commissioner awarded the Claimant 90% to the left ring finger, which was less than the 100% impairment rating to the left ring finger as prescribed by the treating physician. Additionally, the Commissioner held that notice to an agent was notice to the principal. On appeal this case was affirmed by the Appellate Panel of the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission.

Claimant had prior notice that he would continue to have shoulder problems if he continued in his current job; therefore, claimant did not suffer an injury by accident when he reinjured his shoulder – Mr. McElreath tried this case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of International Paper Company and Sedgwick CMS. The Claimant sustained a prior admitted injury to his shoulder and filed a claim for a subsequent injury to the same shoulder. The Employer and Carrier initially accepted the shoulder injury. During the course of discovery Mr. McElreath discovered medical evidence noting that the Claimant had been warned by his doctor during treatment for his prior shoulder injury that he would continue to have the same issues if he continued in the same line of work. The Employer and Carrier denied the subsequent injury on the basis that the Claimant did not suffer an accident as defined in S.C. Code Section 42-1-160. The Claimant admitted receiving notice from his doctor that his issues would continue. The Claimant also admitted that he did not request a transfer to a different job. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant did not suffer an accident as defined in S.C. Code Section 42-1-160 and was not entitled to any additional permanency for his new shoulder injury.

Claimant was not entitled to temporary total disability benefits because the Employer was accommodating his restrictions when he was terminated for cause - Mr. McElreath tried this case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of Detyens Shipyards, Inc. and Bailey Claims Management. The Claimant sustained an admitted injury to his shoulder and the Employer provided suitable alternative employment. During the course of discovery Mr. McElreath discovered medical evidence showing that the Claimant had suffered a prior injury to his shoulder that he had not disclosed on his post-hire medical questionnaire. Pursuant to company policy, the Employer terminated the Claimant’s employment. The Claimant requested a hearing based upon his denied request for indemnity benefits. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant was not entitled to indemnity benefits because he was terminated for cause while the Employer was accommodating his restrictions.

Claimant only sustained an injury to his back and not his neck and shoulder. Claimant was not permanently and totally disabled and was limited to the scheduled recovery for the back. Employer/Carrier was entitled to dollar-for-dollar credit for payments made pursuant to the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act – Mr. McElreath tried this concurrent jurisdiction case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of Ports America, Inc. and Ports Insurance Co. c/o Gallagher Bassett Services, Inc. The Claimant sustained an admitted back injury. The Claimant alleged additional injuries to the neck and shoulders. The Claimant alleged that he was not at maximum medical improvement and in the alternative that he was found at maximum medical improvement the Claimant contended that he was permanently and totally disabled. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant was at maximum medical improvement and was limited to the remedy set forth in S.C. Code Section 42-9-30(21) and that remedy was further confined to the 15% impairment rating to the back as prescribed by the treating physician. The Commissioner also held that the Claimant was not permanent and totally disabled. The Commissioner also found the Employer and Carrier were entitled to a dollar-for-dollar credit for the weekly compensation rate differential between the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act and the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act in the amount of $25,839.45.

Claimant only sustained an injury to his leg, his recovery was limited to the scheduled recovery for the leg, and the Employer/Carrier was entitled to dollar-for-dollar credit for payments made pursuant to the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act – Mr. McElreath tried this concurrent jurisdiction case before the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission on behalf of Contract Technical Resources and Crum & Forster. The Claimant sustained an admitted leg injury. The Claimant alleged additional injuries to his back and neck. The Claimant alleged that he was not at maximum medical improvement and in the alternative that he was found at maximum medical improvement the Claimant contended that he was permanently and totally disabled. The Commissioner ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant was at maximum medical improvement and was limited to the remedy set forth in S.C. Code Section 42-9-30(16) and that remedy was further confined to the 10% impairment rating to the leg as prescribed by the treating physician. The Commissioner also found the Employer and Carrier were entitled to a dollar-for-dollar credit for the weekly compensation rate differential between the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act and the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act

Claimant only sustained an injury to his back and not his neck and shoulder. Claimant was not permanently and totally disabled. Employer/Carrier was entitled to Section 903(e) credit for payments made pursuant to the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act (Case No. 2012-LHC-00447) – Mr. McElreath tried this concurrent jurisdiction case before the United States Department of Labor Office of Administrative Law Judges Division of Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation on behalf of Ports America, Inc. and Ports Insurance Company. The Claimant sustained an admitted back injury. The Claimant alleged additional injuries to the neck and shoulders. The Claimant alleged that he was not at maximum medical improvement and in the alternative that he was found at maximum medical improvement the Claimant contended that he was permanently and totally disabled. The Administrative Law Judge ruled for the Employer and Carrier and found that the Claimant was at maximum medical improvement and was not permanent and totally disabled. The Administrative Law Judge also found the Employer and Carrier were entitled to a dollar-for-dollar credit pursuant to 33 U.S.C. 903(e) for benefits paid under the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act in the amount of $34,138.86.

Education

  • North Carolina State University, B.A.
  • University of North Carolina Asheville, B.A.
  • Charleston School of Law, J.D.

Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • South Carolina Court of Appeals
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • All Georgia state courts
  • Supreme Court of Georgia
  • Georgia Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina

Memberships

  • State Bar of South Carolina
  • State Bar of Georgia
  • State Bar of Virginia
  • Charleston County Bar Association
  • Savannah Bar Association
  • DOL - Joint Bar Association
  • The Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute

Support Staff

Jenna McClain Litigation Paralegal (South Carolina Claims) 843-353-1987
Ansley DeVita Litigation Paralegal (Federal Claims) 843-405-2248