Example Cases Louisiana Appellate Court Has Affirmed
The Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal addressed a jury award in favor of a plaintiff injured in a motor vehicle accident. The collision took place in an area under construction, and the jury found that the plaintiff was partially at fault for the accident. After the jury awarded damages and
reduced the plaintiff’s award according to her percentage of fault, the plaintiff appealed, on the ground that the jury had erred in their finding of fault, as well as the amount of their award for her pain and suffering, as well as her wage loss.
Appellate Court Holds that Employer Had Not Proffered Excluded Testimony as Required by Louisiana Law and Affirms Judgment in Favor of Injured Employee
In an appeal before the Louisiana Fifth Circuit, the court reviewed an award of supplemental earnings benefits in favor of an injured employee. The court analyzed evidentiary rules and specifically whether the Office of Workers’ Compensation had properly excluded a vocational rehabilitation expert from testifying as an expert and refused to admit her report into evidence.
A case before the Second Circuit Court of Appeal addressed allegations of insurance bad faith. This case stems from a car accident and an insurer’s denial of payment for claims. The plaintiffs, Mr. and Mrs. Steve, and Trace Ambrose, acknowledged their premium payment to the insurer, defendant Automobile Club Inter-Insurance Exchange, had been late, but they claimed that the insurer regularly and consistently accepted late payments. Mr. and Mrs. Ambrose claimed that their insurer acted in bad faith and was arbitrary, capricious, and lacking in probable cause. In their complaint, they asked for damages, penalties, and attorney fees.
Louisiana Appeals Court Affirms Injured Worker Performing Construction Work on Land is not a Maritime Employee under the Longshoreman & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act
A case before the Louisiana Third Circuit addressed the definitions of “situs” and “status” under the Longshoreman & Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA). In this case, the situs, or location, and the status of an injured employee determined his compensation. The plaintiff, Mr. Hernandez, was cutting timber for the construction of a boat ramp when he suffered an injury. The ramp was being built on Bayou Teche in Loreauville to launch boats in the waterway. Mr. Hernandez was injured while working in a grassy area, about 100 feet from the ramp.
In a case before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal, the court addressed the issue of borrowed employee status in the context of the Louisiana Workers’ Compensation Act. The plaintiff, Mr. Von Lastie, appealed a summary judgment in favor of the defendants, the City of Gretna and Ronnie Harris. Mr. Lastie had been employed by a staffing agency and assigned to work for the City of Gretna. He worked with a grass cutting crew and was transported in a van to a location for a grass-cutting assignment. Another City of Gretna employee failed to put the van in “park,” and the van rolled into traffic and was struck by a tractor-trailer. Mr. Lastie suffered personal injuries.
Louisiana Appellate Court Affirms Finding that Injured Airplane Mechanic Offered Credible Testimony of His Work-Related Accident and Suffered Compensable Injury
The Louisiana Second Circuit Court of Appeal addressed whether an employee can prove their unwitnessed work-related injury through their own testimony. The court, in this case, stated the rule that an employee can prove, through testifying, that an unwitnessed accident took place if there is no other evidence that discredits their version and if circumstances corroborate the testimony after the alleged incident, such as medical records. The court also emphasized that a fact-finder is required to accept as true a witness’ uncontradicted testimony, absent circumstances that cast suspicion on the reliability of the testimony.
Appeals Court Finds No Manifest Error in Louisiana Office of Workers’ Compensation Judgment Concerning Missed Benefit Payments and Medical Findings
In a recent First Circuit, Court of Appeal case, the court affirmed the Office of Workers’ Compensation judgment dismissing the allegations that an employee’s alleged pain issues were related to his work accident, that his employer should have authorized his choice of orthopedist, and that he was entitled to penalties for missed medical payments.
Workers’ compensation covers treatment for injuries sustained during the course of employment. Additionally, medical expenses may be reimbursed for attendant care if the nature of services is similar to that provided in a hospital or nursing home. A recent workers’ compensation case before the Third Circuit Court of Appeal examined a claim for reimbursement of caretaker services provided by an injured employee’s wife. This case also addresses the penalties awarded when the employer fails to pay the appropriate amount or pay in a timely manner.