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Mill Street Church of Christ v. Hogan - 785 S.W.2d 263, 1990 Ky. App. LEXIS 32

Rule:

The employees covered under the Kentucky Workers' Compensation Act include every person, including a minor, whether lawfully or unlawfully employed, in the service of an employer under any contract of hire or apprenticeship, express or implied. Further, all helpers and assistants of employees whether paid by the employer or employee, if employed with the knowledge, actual or constructive of the employer are covered.

Facts:

Mill Street Church of Christ (“Mill Street”) hired a church member to paint its building, and during previous jobs, it allowed the member to employ his brother, Samuel J. Hogan, to assist him. Hogan was injured on the first day at work, and Mill Street paid the church member for the hours worked by Hogan prior to the injury. Hogan filed a claim for workers' compensation benefits, and the old board denied compensation. The new board later reversed that decision and remanded the case to an administrative law judge to determine the amount of compensation, and Mill Street appealed.

Issue:

Was Hogan considered an employee of Mill Street, and therefore, entitled to compensation benefits?

Answer:

Yes

Conclusion:

The Court affirmed the new board's reversal of the old board's decision denying benefits and held that because no facts were in dispute, the new board's consideration of employment status was a question of law, not of fact. The Court found that the workers' compensation statute specifically allowed recovery under both express and implied employment agreements, that it applied to all helpers and assistants of employees whether paid by the employer or employee, and that Hogan was an employee of Mill Street under the statute.

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