Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board Awards Attorney Fees at Expedited Hearing. 

By: Connor Sestak

Recently, the Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (“Appeals Board”) in David Thompson v. Comcast Corporation, et al., awarded the employee attorneys’ fees due to the employer’s failure to authorize the recommended treatment for pain management. This is the first decision of the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board awarding attorney fees since the statutory provision was implemented in July 2016.

High Court: No Reimbursement to Employers for Overturned Attorney Fee Awards

By Emily Brill

Three years after Howard Parker’s death at the age of 88, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has settled a nine-year dispute between his attorney and employer over a $14,750 fee.

The ruling handed down Thursday overturned the Commonwealth Court and settles once and for all that claimants’ attorneys don’t have to repay employers for unreasonable contest attorney fees that are later overturned.

The decision in County of Allegheny v. WCAB (Parker) also hinted that the Supreme Court may be inclined to second-guess another Commonwealth Court opinion related to the Supersedeas Fund, which reimburses employers for benefit overpayments, if a proper challenge comes before it.

Supreme Court finds injury arose in the course and scope of employment after Employee quit job.

By: Connor Sestak

In a case of first impression, the Tennessee Supreme Court Special Workers Compensation Panel (“Panel”) in Duck v. Cox Oil Co.,  2017 Tenn. LEXIS 734 (June 19, 2017), found that Employee’ injury, which occurred immediately after she announced that she was quitting, arose in the course and scope of her employment.

Motion for Summary Judgment: An Arrow Back in the Defense’s Quiver?

By: Patricia J. Baxter and Nate R. Bohlander

Is the motion for summary judgment arrow back in the defense bar’s quiver for defect and failure to warn claims?  The Pennsylvania products liability law landscape has been in constant flux since the seminal Tincher v. Omega Flex, Inc., 628 Pa. 296 (Pa. 2014) decision.  One of the starkest changes was the supposed death of the motion for summary judgment as an exit strategy.