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West Virginia: Robbery at Gunpoint Found Insufficient to Support PTSD Claim

March 07, 2021 (1 min read)

The Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia, construing W. Va. Code § 23-4-1f, pursuant to which mental injury claims are generally disqualified from coverage unless caused by physical means, affirmed the denial of a claim filed by a gaming parlor cashier who contended she suffered from PTSD following a robbery at gunpoint at her employer’s facility. The high court split 3-2, with the majority finding the facts of the case were distinguishable from those in UPS v. Hannah, 2013 W. Va. LEXIS 1165 (Oct. 25, 2013) (memorandum decision), which the claimant, who was unrepresented at the time she filed her claim, used as a "template" for her own claim. Using that template, the claimant alleged that after the robbery she had problems sleeping, eating, and leaving her house. The court said the facts in Hannah were much more egregious than those in the instant case.

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 Black v. Same Old Place, Inc., 2021 W. Va. LEXIS 54 (Feb. 19, 2021)

See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 56.04.

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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