Workers' Compensation

Recent Posts

Missouri: Uninsured Employer Faces Wrongful Death Suit After Comp Settlement
Posted on 15 Jun 2012 by Martin Klug

An uninsured employer could be sued for wrongful death because claimant's worker's compensation settlement against a statutory employer was not an election of remedies, according to the Missouri Supreme Court in Lewis, etal, v. Gilmore, etal,... Read More

Missouri: Smoking Pot May Support Disability Claim
Posted on 28 Nov 2012 by Martin Klug

The commission reversed a denial of benefits and awarded permanent total benefits against the Second Injury Fund and noted that a prior habit of smoking pot daily for twenty years might be regarded as a hindrance or obstacle to employment. Mandina v Glass... Read More

Missouri: Supreme Court Reverses Comp Benefits From Making Coffee
Posted on 31 May 2012 by Martin Klug

Claimant was injured in an office kitchen after making coffee and fell when she turned to put coffee grounds into the trash eventually resulting in surgery to her hip and pelvis. The Supreme Court in Johme v St. John's Mercy Healthcare, No. SC 92113... Read More

Missouri: A "Working" Claimant is Not a Total (sometimes)
Posted on 8 Dec 2011 by Martin Klug

Claimant's capacity to return to work for 1 1/2 years after her back injury defeated her SIF claim that she was permanently and totally disabled. Her duties such as data entry, answering phones or monitoring suicidal patients were considered a ‘real... Read More

Missouri: No Disability for Hunting Trip Accident
Posted on 22 Dec 2011 by Martin Klug

Claimant sustained catastrophic injuries from a single car pre-dawn accident in 2008 on a gravel country road when his car went off the road. The parties stipulated that the 30-year old claimant was unemployable but disputed whether his accident arose... Read More

Missouri: Court Dilutes Claimant’s Drug Cocktail
Posted on 15 Nov 2012 by Martin Klug

The Missouri court of appeals affirmed a decision to dilute a drug cocktail, but the decision came with a twist with a warning about attorney’s fees. In Noel v ABB Combustion Engineering , ED 98446 (Mo. App. 11-13-2012) the injured worker obtained... Read More

Missouri: Chasing Bad Guy Arises Out of Employment
Posted on 2 Mar 2012 by Martin Klug

A robber wearing a ski mask and carrying a box cutter demanded claimant turn over his employer's money. When the employer had only $1 on premises, the robber stole claimant's cell phone and fled. The robber dropped the cell phone but when claimant... Read More

MO: Supreme Court to Address "Equal Exposure" Defense
Posted on 26 Oct 2011 by Martin Klug

When is an accident not compensable because an injured worker was equally exposed to the hazard or risk outside of and unrelated to the employment? The issue will now go to the Missouri Supreme Court, based on a recent transfer by the Eastern District... Read More

MO: Police Chief Awarded Disability For Wiping Car Window
Posted on 19 Oct 2011 by Martin Klug

A police chief who describes acute neck pain after wiping the inside window of his unmarked police car performed "integral" police work under Missouri law. Whiteley v City of Poplar Bluff , No. SD 31287 (Mo. App. Oct. 11, 2011), affirmed an... Read More

MO: Cloudy Mind Keeps Nurse From Working
Posted on 23 Aug 2011 by Martin Klug

A nurse can never work again according to the Commission, affirming an award of permanent and total disability and open medical for a 49 year old R.N. in Jordan v. St. John's Mercy Health Systems , DOLIR 8-11-11. The Commission modified her compensation... Read More

Missouri: Court Declines to Compel Payment of Fund Award
Posted on 23 Jan 2013 by Martin Klug

An injured worker with an unpaid award of permanent total benefits could not compel the Fund to fully pay the award by a writ of mandamus, according to the court of appeals. Skirvin v Treasurer of the State of Mo. , 2013 Mo App. Lexis 84 (Jan 22, 2013... Read More

Missouri: No Death Benefits From Toe Fracture
Posted on 14 Feb 2012 by Martin Klug

Claimant died five years after he stubbed his toe while delivering pizzas. He fractured his toe and claims he also hurt his knee. The ALJ awarded death benefits. The parties disputed whether claimant's left knee symptoms, recurrent surgeries for a... Read More

Missouri Second Injury Fund: Is It Time to Re-Define Disability?
Posted on 25 Jan 2013 by Martin Klug

No case highlights the financial crisis of Missouri’s second injury better than the recent case of Skirvin v Treasurer of State of Mo. WD 75441 (Mo. App. 2013), 2013 Mo App. Lexis 84 , which describes the Fund’s incapacity to pay millions... Read More

Missouri: Commission Douses ‘Pants on Fire’ Defense
Posted on 28 Sep 2012 by Martin Klug

Claimant “routinely exaggerated the nature and extent of his conditions and disabilities, and was less than fully truthful regarding his low back problems,” according to the administrative law judge, but the Commission reversed a denial of... Read More

Missouri: Commission Guts Benefits to Sex Assault Victim
Posted on 10 May 2012 by Martin Klug

When there is no other evidence on the issue of rate, the statutory minimum rate of $40 a week applies. The claimant has the burden to prove rate. Boilerplate pleading asserting the "maximum" rate on a claim did not entitle claimant to the statutory... Read More

  • Blog Post: Tornado Victims Injured or Killed in the Workplace: A Focus on Missouri Case Law

    The general rule stated by Professor Larson is that injury due to Acts of God arises out of the employment if the employment increases the risk of this kind of harm. It is difficult to prove increased risk in tornado cases, though. Some exceptions would include showing that the location of employment...
  • Blog Post: MO: Cloudy Mind Keeps Nurse From Working

    A nurse can never work again according to the Commission, affirming an award of permanent and total disability and open medical for a 49 year old R.N. in Jordan v. St. John's Mercy Health Systems , DOLIR 8-11-11. The Commission modified her compensation rate. The claimant had a sporadic attendance...
  • Blog Post: MO: Police Chief Awarded Disability For Wiping Car Window

    A police chief who describes acute neck pain after wiping the inside window of his unmarked police car performed "integral" police work under Missouri law. Whiteley v City of Poplar Bluff , No. SD 31287 (Mo. App. Oct. 11, 2011), affirmed an award of medical and PPD benefits from the Commission...
  • Blog Post: MO: Claimant Loses Permanent Total Claim When Her Vocational Expert Concedes She Can Be Trained As Cashier

    The court of appeals rejected claimant's PTD claim against the second injury fund based on inconsistent opinions of her vocational expert. Carkeek v Treasurer of the State of Mo. , WD 73377 (Mo. App. Oct. 11, 2011) (Free Download), affirmed an award of PPD but a denial of PTD benefits awarded by...
  • Blog Post: MO: Supreme Court to Address "Equal Exposure" Defense

    When is an accident not compensable because an injured worker was equally exposed to the hazard or risk outside of and unrelated to the employment? The issue will now go to the Missouri Supreme Court, based on a recent transfer by the Eastern District in Sandy Johme v St. John's Mercy Healthcare...
  • Blog Post: MO: Working Doesn't Stop PTD Benefits for Claimant

    A permanently and totally disabled claimant with a traumatic brain injury did not lose benefits because he was working, according to the Missouri Court of Appeals, when the employer failed to show a change in physical condition. The case is Pavia v Smitty's Supermarkets , No. 31275 (Mo. App. SD 2012...
  • Blog Post: Missouri: Claimant’s Death Did Not Unravel Settlement Offer

    The court of appeals found a ‘deal was a deal’ and the employer was stuck with its offer to settle a case for $181,434 representing future disability payments, even though claimant died the day the joint motion for commutation of a permanent total award was submitted to the Commission for...
  • Blog Post: Missouri: Polio Renders Worker Totally Disabled

    Claimant fell hundreds of times before in his life, but in 2008 he slipped on a slick floor in his employer’s bathroom, lost control of his crutches, and injured his neck. He never returned to work after two neck surgeries. The Commission affirmed an award for permanent total tried solely against...
  • Blog Post: Missouri: Court Declines to Compel Payment of Fund Award

    An injured worker with an unpaid award of permanent total benefits could not compel the Fund to fully pay the award by a writ of mandamus, according to the court of appeals. Skirvin v Treasurer of the State of Mo. , 2013 Mo App. Lexis 84 (Jan 22, 2013) The court of appeals vacated a writ of mandamus...
  • Blog Post: Missouri Second Injury Fund: Is It Time to Re-Define Disability?

    No case highlights the financial crisis of Missouri’s second injury better than the recent case of Skirvin v Treasurer of State of Mo. WD 75441 (Mo. App. 2013), 2013 Mo App. Lexis 84 , which describes the Fund’s incapacity to pay millions of dollars in awarded benefits. One issue underlying...