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Workers' Compensation

Oregon: Stress Claim Fails Under State’s “Major Contributing Cause” Standard

Construing Oregon’s “clear and convincing evidence” standard, along with the state’s requirement that work conditions constitute the “major contributing cause” of the worker’s claimed condition, a state appellate court affirmed a determination by the state’s Workers’ Compensation Board that denied benefits for a worker’s mental disorder claim. Acknowledging that the worker established that she had been under some level of stress, the appellate court said the Board appropriately weighed the evidence and under the “major contributing cause” standard denied coverage. One factor that appeared to play a role was that the employee’s physician attributed her weight loss to the stress that she complained of at work. It appeared, however, that the employee was taking weight loss medication prescribed by another physician. It also appeared the employee did not disclose this fact to the doctor who made the mental injury diagnosis. The court added that disciplinary actions that the employee complained of were not to be included in the list of allowable factors that might cause a compensable mental injury.

Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the co-Editor-in-Chief and Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law(LexisNexis).

LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance.

See In re Comp. of King v. Gallagher Bassett Ins. Servs., 316 Or. App. 24, 2021 Ore. App. LEXIS 1681 (Dec. 1, 2021)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 56.06.

Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law

For a more detailed discussion of the case, see

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