2020 Supreme Court Panel Opinions in Review

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Thanks for reading this final installment of my three-part series on appellate opinions issued last year. As the title suggests, this article revisits decisions from Supreme Court Panels. Please read them; don’t rely just on my cursory analyses. Thanks. I’ll begin with a case from the Claims Commission. In … Continue reading 2020 Supreme Court Panel Opinions in Review

A Look Back at 2020 Appeals Board Opinions, part one

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville What a year! The memes abound about 2020, most of which contain language or images unsuitable for this forum. (Here are a few from Reader’s Digest that are less likely to offend.) But regardless of last year’s tragedies, disruptions of our work and personal activities, and social and political … Continue reading A Look Back at 2020 Appeals Board Opinions, part one

Board Modifies Rating to Reject Non-work-related Condition

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville A trial court can’t award permanent partial disability benefits for an impairment rating where part of that rating is attributable to a non-work-related condition. So held the Appeals Board last week, modifying the trial court’s order to reflect a lower rating. The case was argued last month. In Hart … Continue reading Board Modifies Rating to Reject Non-work-related Condition

Employer Can’t be Ordered to pay Attorney’s Fees on Unpaid Medicals

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Last week, the Appeals Board held that, under section 50-6-226(a)(1), an employer can't be liable for attorney’s fees based on the amount of medical expenses a court orders it to pay. In September 2016, Nicole Bowlin was injured in a motor vehicle accident while working for Servall. She was … Continue reading Employer Can’t be Ordered to pay Attorney’s Fees on Unpaid Medicals

Appeals Board Releases Two Opinions from October Oral Arguments

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Earlier this week, the Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board affirmed a pair of trial court rulings about an employer’s right to a medical examination and the exclusion of expert testimony when an attorney didn’t comply with a scheduling deadline. The Board held oral argument in both cases last month. … Continue reading Appeals Board Releases Two Opinions from October Oral Arguments

Board Clarifies Date of Injury in Mental Injury Claim for Jurisdictional Purposes

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Last week, the Appeals Board ruled on an issue of first impression that the date of injury in mental injury claims for jurisdictional purposes is the date of the identifiable work-related event or events resulting in a sudden or unusual stimulus. The ruling rejected an injured worker’s contention that … Continue reading Board Clarifies Date of Injury in Mental Injury Claim for Jurisdictional Purposes

Board Releases Opinion Allowing MIRR Evaluation to Proceed

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville When a party requests an evaluation from the Bureau’s Medical Impairment Rating Registry, the opposing party can’t object on the basis that the party manufactured a dispute over the rating by hiring an expert to perform a records review. The Appeals Board announced this legal principle yesterday in Gray … Continue reading Board Releases Opinion Allowing MIRR Evaluation to Proceed

Board Reverses Causation Decision in Complex Occupational Disease Case

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Last week, the Appeals Board reversed a trial court determination finding medical causation in a case where the employee alleged liver, kidney and cardiac conditions as occupational diseases. According to the Board, the lower court should’ve accepted the employer’s experts’ opinions because they were better qualified and didn’t rely … Continue reading Board Reverses Causation Decision in Complex Occupational Disease Case

Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction Precludes an Election of Remedies

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville The Supreme Court Special Workers’ Compensation Appeals Panel revived a case earlier this week, holding that an injured worker didn’t elect to pursue his claim in Georgia when that state’s tribunal found he didn’t have subject matter jurisdiction. The ruling reinstates the decision of Tennessee Court of Workers’ Compensation … Continue reading Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction Precludes an Election of Remedies

Appeals Board reaffirms Direct and Natural Consequence Rule

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville The Appeals Board released two opinions last Friday, deciding cases they heard at oral argument on March 24. In the first opinion, Hudgins v. Global Personnel Solutions, Natacha Hudgins injured her knee in 2016 while working at a battery manufacturing plant. Global, a temporary employment agency, accepted the claim … Continue reading Appeals Board reaffirms Direct and Natural Consequence Rule

Board Releases Opinion on Panels, Medical Causation

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville The Appeals Board released another opinion from its March 24 oral arguments last week. Barnes v. Jack Cooper Transport, a review of an expedited hearing order, offers guidance on improper panels and medical causation. William Barnes, a truck driver, reported to Jack Cooper Transport that his left knee gave … Continue reading Board Releases Opinion on Panels, Medical Causation

Board affirms in Ibarra v. Amazon Fulfillment Services

By Jane Salem, staff attorney, Nashville Yesterday, the Appeals Board released its first opinion from the cases on oral argument last week. In Ibarra v. Amazon Fulfillment Services, the Board resolved three issues. The first was notice. The Workers’ Compensation Law requires written notice of a work-related injury unless an employer has actual notice. Amazon … Continue reading Board affirms in Ibarra v. Amazon Fulfillment Services

More oral arguments

By Jane Salem, staff atorney, Nashville Last Tuesday, the Appeals Board held telephonic oral arguments in six cases. I previously wrote about the morning cases. The following summarizes the afternoon’s cases, which all involved review of expedited hearings and medical causation issues. In Barnes v. Jack Cooper Transportation Co., the employer appealed an order for … Continue reading More oral arguments