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Case Summaries

Workers' Comp

[05/11] SSA Terminals and Homeport Ins. Co. v. Carrion
In an action brought by a claimant seeking disability benefits under the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, an employer/insurer's petition for review of a decision by the Benefits Review Board is denied where: 1) the claimant timely filed his claim against his employer; 2) claimant's knee injury was a permanent, rather than a temporary, disability; and 3) the doctrines of exhaustion and waiver were inapplicable because claimant presented his claim of permanent disability well before the conclusion of the administrative process and neither the employer nor the agency was blindsided by the argument.

[05/02] Matthews v. Liberty Assignment Corp.
In a case dealing with the issue of whether a judgment, based on a structured settlement of an employee's workers' compensation claims against his employer and others, which was agreed upon by the parties and entered as an award in the workers' compensation proceeding, may be assigned by the injured employee, the trial court's denial of a motion for an order approving the assignment of plaintiff's structured settlement payment judgement is affirmed where the assignment was prohibited by statute.

[04/27] Guerra v. WCAB
In a Workers' Comp case in which claimant died from a pulmonary hemorrhage while taking out the garbage at work, the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board rejection of a doctor's opinion as speculative and ruling that it had not been shown that claimant's death arose out of and in the course of his employment, is annulled and remanded where the death arose out of and in the course of employment.

[04/22] Travelers Cas. & Surety Co. v. WCAB
In an insurer's action seeking seeks to set aside the decision of the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB) finding that a worker sustained a psychiatric injury resulting from a sudden and extraordinary employment condition within the meaning of Labor Code section 3208.3(d), the Board's decision is annulled where the accident was not extraordinary within the meaning of section 3208.3 and remanded with instructions to deny worker's claim for psychiatric injury.

[03/22] CA Ins. Guarantee Assoc. v. Workers' Comp. Appeals Bd.
In an action challenging the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board denial of a Legislatively-created insurance guarantee's motion to be dismissed from the underlying workers' compensation cases on the ground that it was authorized to pay only covered claims from which the Legislature expressly excluded any claim to the extent it is covered by any other insurance, Ins. Code sections 1063.1(c)(9) and 1063.2(a), the Board's decision is annulled where the underlying compromise and release agreement did not relieve the primary underlying insurer of its several liability for third party claims.

[01/05] King v. CompPartners, Inc.
In a suit arising out of plaintiff's injury at work, alleging professional negligence, negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligent infliction of emotional distress, and seeking general, special, exemplary, and punitive damages, the trial court's sustainment of defendants' demurrer without leave to amend is: 1) affirmed in part as to the demurrer, where the claims are preempted by the Workers Compensation Act (WCA) and the defendants did not owe plaintiffs a duty of care; but 2) reversed as to denial of leave to amend the complaint.

[11/06] Eastern Ass'n Coal Corp.v.Dir. Office of Workers' Comp. Programs
In a workers' compensation action challenging an administrative law judge (ALJ)'s grant of black lung benefits to Arvis R. Toler, the petition for review is denied where the ALJ did not contravene the Black Lung Benefits Act, 30 U.S.C. sections 901-945 or the principles of finality and separation of powers.

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