CA: WCAB Provides Guidance on Petition to Reopen to Add Injury to New Body Parts

CA: WCAB Provides Guidance on Petition to Reopen to Add Injury to New Body Parts

Mark Hancock v. D&M Hancock, State Compensation Insurance Fund

WCAB Jurisdiction--Petitions to Reopen--Addition of New Body Part--WCAB, affirming WCJ's decision, held that WCAB had jurisdiction over applicant's claim for cumulative injury to his bilateral shoulders through 7/31/2001, when applicant claimed bilateral shoulder injury for first time in his 10/3/2005 petition to reopen prior Stipulated Award under which parties stipulated to low back, right knee, left knee, and bilateral carpal tunnel injuries, and WCAB found that (1) shoulder injury was a newly disclosed injury which AME had not commented upon at time parties entered Stipulated Award on 3/23/2005, thereby giving WCAB jurisdiction over claim for bilateral shoulders by amendment pursuant to Labor Code §§ 5803, 5804 and 5410, (2) applicant established good cause to reopen Stipulated Award based on bilateral shoulder injury which was unknown at time Award was made, (3) newly discovered injury need not be a compensable consequence an original injured body parts under previous Award in order to constitute good cause to reopen, and (4) even if bilateral shoulder injury had not been claimed in petition to reopen, applicant could have filed an Application for Adjudication of Claim alleging bilateral shoulder injury up until 1/2008, i.e. within one year of AME's report informing applicant of industrial nature of his shoulder problems. © Copyright 2010 LexisNexis. All rights reserved.

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Source: Calif. Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board