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One of our goals is to provide timely news about our areas of practice.
To that end, I’d like to bring to your attention a recent New Mexico Court of Appeals opinion, Gregory Vialpando v. Ben’s Automotive Services and Redwood Fire & Casualty, N.M. , No. 32,920 (5/19/2014). This is a workers’ compensation case that addresses the question of whether or not medical treatment using medical marijuana must be paid for by the workers’ compensation insurer. In summary, the Court held that medical marijuana could be used to treat a workers’ injuries under New Mexico workers’ compensation law as long as there was adequate proof that the treatment was reasonable and necessary.
So, if your treating doctor has offered medical marijuana as part of your treatment, it is now possible to get it as long as your doctor can show the treatment is reasonable and necessary. Unfortunately, you may have to wait until a workers’ compensation judge decides that such treatment is reasonable and necessary in your case before the workers’ compensation insurer will pay for the treatment.
The Court of Appeals has not posted the opinion yet, but is should be on this site soon if you’d like to see it: http://www.nmcompcomm.us/nmcases/NMARYear.aspx?db=scr&y1=2014&y2=2014