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Workers' Compensation

Applicant Rebuts 16 Percent Scheduled Rating to Obtain Permanent Total Disability: Cal. Comp. Cases December Advanced Postings (12/16/2014)

Here’s the fourth batch of advanced postings for December 2014 issue of Cal. Comp. Cases.

Lexis.com and Lexis Advance subscribers can link to the cases to read the complete headnotes and summaries.

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Sutter Medical Foundation, PSI, adjusted by Sutter Health Workers' Compensation, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Kari Moulthrop, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Permanent Disability—Rating—Opioid Medications—WCAB held that there was sufficient evidence to support WCJ’s finding that applicant incurred permanent total disability in accordance with Labor Code § 4662 following industrial injuries to her lumbar spine, right knee, and left ankle, based on applicant’s testimony regarding her physical condition in conjunction with opinions of orthopedic agreed medical evaluator Jeffrey Holmes, M.D., pain management specialist and psychiatrist James Weiss, M.D., (applicant’s primary treating physician), and vocational expert Bob Rehm indicating that applicant’s reliance on high levels of narcotic pain medication, including Norco and Soma, caused strong and unpredictable side effects that would make applicant unable to compete in open labor market, and WCAB found that…

California Self-Insurers' Security Fund, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Golden State Health Centers, Inc., dba Sylmar Health and Rehabilitation Centers, PSI, Metro Risk Management, Samuel Tapia, Jr., Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Injury AOE/COE—Horseplay—WCAB, in split panel decision reversing WCJ, held that applicant’s claim for industrial injury was not barred based on applicant’s alleged participation in “horseplay” at time of injury, notwithstanding testimony of applicant’s co-workers that applicant willingly participated in “dog piling” incident that led to his injuries and WCJ’s finding that applicant lacked credibility, when panel majority reasoned that…

Technicolor, Zurich American Insurance Company, administered by Tristar Risk Management, Petitioners v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Michelle Minichiello-Smith, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Statute of Limitations—Cumulative Injuries—WCAB, in split panel decision, held that applicant/film technician’s claim for cumulative industrial injury to her neck, right shoulder, and bilateral hands and wrists filed more than one year from last date of work, was not barred by Labor Code § 5405 statute of limitations, when majority of WCAB panel, applying principles described in series of prior appellate cases, concluded that…

Tony Luna, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Marcelino Sanchez, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Employment Relationship—Presumption of Employee Status—WCAB held that applicant was employee of uninsured defendant/petitioner on date of applicant’s industrial injury, 8/2/2006, pursuant to presumption of employee status set forth in Labor Code § 3357, relying on …

Workers’ Compensation Judges—Bias—WCAB found no error by WCJ in advising pro per applicant to seek legal representation at time of trial, when…

Robert Dominguez, DDS, Zurich American Insurance Company, Petitioners v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Lisa Leong (Dec'd), Bryan Leong (Son), Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Removal to WCAB—WCAB Order for Further Development of Record—Medical Treatment—Home Health Care—WCAB denied defendants’ petition to remove case to itself under Labor Code § 5310, finding no substantial prejudice or irreparable harm if removal was not granted due to WCJ’s order vacating submission of record and ordering further development of record related to decedent’s son’s claim for reimbursement for home health care provided to his mother before her death from non-industrial cancer, contending that…

Mitchell A. Brim, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, Metro Goldwyn Mayer, Anita Sharp, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Sanctions—Bad Faith Tactics of Counsel—WCAB held that petitioner’s conduct was sanctionable and in bad faith and imposed sanctions, when WCAB found that petitioner was attorney for defendant at lien conference related to applicant’s workers’ compensation claim, that WCAB staff, including two WCJs, repeatedly warned petitioner to leave WCAB offices at Long Beach Division of Workers’ Compensation premises by closing time, that WCAB had…

Michael Ben Graves, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, MT Transportation, Ace American Insurance Company, administered by Broadspire, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Petitions for Writ for Review—WCAB Final Orders—Court of Appeal dismissed applicant’s petition for writ of review because applicant was appealing WCAB decision that was not final order or decision as required by Labor Code §§ 5900 and 5901, when applicant was appealing WCAB decision in which WCAB…

Rodolfo Figueroa Navarro, Petitioner v. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, North Bay Landscape Management, Inc., Cypress Insurance Company, c/o Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies, Respondents, (lexis.com) (Lexis Advance)

Injury AOE/COE—WCAB held that applicant landscaper sustained injury AOE/COE to back and hernia cumulatively ending 3/1/2010 and on 11/15/2010 but did not sustain injury AOE/COE on same two dates to psyche or internal system, based on opinions from two panel qualified medical evaluators, and WCAB also held…

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