A Capehart Scatchard Blog

John H. Geaney

John H. Geaney, a shareholder and co-chair of Capehart Scatchard's Workers' Compensation department, began an email newsletter entitled Currents in Workers’ Compensation, ADA and FMLA in 2001 in order to keep clients and readers informed on leading developments in these three areas of law. Since that time he has written over 500 newsletter updates.

Mr. Geaney is the author of Geaney’s New Jersey Workers’ Compensation Manual for Practitioners, Adjusters & Employers. The manual is distributed by the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education (NJICLE). He also authored an ADA and FMLA manual as distributed by NJICLE. If you are interested in purchasing the manual, please contact NJICLE at 732-214-8500 or visit their website at www.njicle.com.

Mr. Geaney represents employers in the defense of workers’ compensation, ADA and FMLA matters. He is a Fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers of the American Bar Association and is certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a workers’ compensation law attorney. He is one of two firm representatives to the National Workers’ Compensation Defense Network. He has served on the Executive Committee of Capehart Scatchard for over ten (10) years.

A graduate of Holy Cross College summa cum laude, Mr. Geaney obtained his law degree from Boston College Law School. He has been named a “Super Lawyer” by his peers and Law and Politics. He serves as Vice President of the Friends of MEND, the fundraising arm of a local charitable organization devoted to promoting affordable housing.

Capehart Scatchard is a full service law firm with offices in Mt. Laurel and Trenton, New Jersey. The firm represents employers and businesses in a wide variety of areas, including workers’ compensation, civil litigation, labor, environmental, business, estates and governmental affairs.

Employee Of Property Management Company Can Sue Affiliated Mobile Home Park Where He Worked

By on September 9, 2011 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

Edwin Conk applied to work for Friendly Village (FV), a mobile home park in Toms River, N.J.  FV is a limited liability company, the managing member of which is PCI Redhen Corporation (PCI).  PCI owns 100% of the stock of Advanced Horizons Enterprises, Inc., (AHE).   AHE managed FV’s financial affairs andFriendlyVillage.  Conk’s employment contract was […]

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Company Manager Did Not Violate ADA’s Confidentiality Provisions In Telling Prospective Employer About Former Employee’s Health Condition

By on September 1, 2011 in ADA with 0 Comments

Sometimes the cases with the most simple fact patterns make the best ones to understand bright lines in the law.  The case of EEOC v. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, 2011 U.S.Dist. LEXIS 64042 (D. Wisc. 2011) provides some clear guidance on what employers can and cannot say about the health of employees. In this case, […]

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Judge Of Compensation After Full Trial Finds Medical Provider Was Properly Compensated In Burn Claim

By on August 29, 2011 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

There are thousands of medical reimbursement claims filed by medical providers in the New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation.  A comprehensive decision following a lengthy trial was recently handed down by the Honorable Virginia Dietrich, Administrative Supervisory Judge of Compensation.  To this practitioner’s knowledge, this is the first fully tried decision in the Division involving […]

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Appellate Division Holds That Division Of Workers’ Compensation Has Jurisdiction To Decide Coverage Issue

By on August 23, 2011 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

Robert Tutelais a member of Earthworks Limited Liability Company and also one of its employees.  Earthworks is in the business of landscape construction.  In 2008 Earthworks through Tutela filed an application with Sentinel Insurance Company for workers’ compensation coverage.  Representations were made that Earthworks hired independent contractors to perform tree work and that all of […]

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Calling In “Sick” Is Not Enough To Invoke The FMLA

By on August 17, 2011 in FMLA with 0 Comments

Employers are somewhat behind the eight ball in the FMLA because the employee need not specifically invoke the “FMLA” in order to obtain protection under the law.  Nor does the employee have to give detailed information about health; rather, the employer has to consider whether the FMLA applies based on what the employee says is […]

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Appellate Division Allows Medical Reimbursement Claim To Proceed In Civil Court While Comp Case Is Pending

By on August 11, 2011 in Controlling Costs with 0 Comments

Legal actions for reimbursement by medical providers have become very common in the New Jersey Division of Workers’ Compensation.  Now they are even more complex following the decision in The Valley Hospital v. LQ Management LLC, A-0831-10T1 (App. Div. August 8, 2011). The facts are straightforward.  An employee of LQ Management, LLC, was treated for […]

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Teacher Found Still In Employment When Injured After Picking Up Child At School Where Teacher Worked

By on August 4, 2011 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

Workers’ compensation issues often arise in the context of civil litigation.  That is what happened in the case of High v. Rose, A-2539-09T1 (App. Div. July 26, 2011).  Toni Lee High worked as a nurse at Montclair Kimberley Academy.  On the day of the accident High was supervising children entering school buses at the Academy […]

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Employee’s Failure to Respond To Request for More Information Regarding Leave Request Doomed FMLA Claim

By on July 25, 2011 in FMLA with 1 Comment

Robert Righi worked as a sales rep for SMC Corporation of America.  On several occasions Righi would request vacation time to care for his mother.  He would email his manager, Louis  King, for prior approval.  The company policy was to require employees to obtain prior approval from a supervisor before taking leave. The policy further provided […]

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Federal Court Holds That Employee With Renal Cancer In Remission Is Covered Under The ADA

By on July 18, 2011 in ADA with 0 Comments

Michael Norton worked for defendant ALC in May 2008.  The company operated 200 facilities in twenty states involving assisted living services to the elderly.  Plaintiff worked at the Sulphur Springs, Texas location as a “Residence Sales Manager.” Norton was diagnosed with renal cancer in April 2009.  He went on medical leave and underwent surgery on […]

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Disclosure By Employer Of Medical Information That Was Voluntarily Offered By Employee Does Not Violate ADA

By on July 11, 2011 in ADA with 4 Comments

Many employers struggle with situations that develop when an employee voluntarily reveals certain confidential medical information.  In Watson v. C.R. England, Inc., 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 8971, (10th Cir. 2011), the plaintiff worked as a truck driver for C.R. England.  In the course of his employment, he informed C.R. England’s Human Resources Director that he […]

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Appellate Division Holds Truck Driver Sleeping On Dana Transport Property Was An Employee And Cannot Sue Dana Transport In Civil Action

By on July 8, 2011 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

The independent contractor defense in New Jersey is not generally a strong defense, but it can be sometimes advantageous to employers to invoke it when they are sued civilly.  The case of Fugatt v. Dennison Graine and Dana Transport, Inc., A-5353-09T3 (App. Div. July 5, 2011) presents a fascinating situation where the injured worker did […]

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Light Duty – Harbatuk v. S&S Furniture Systems Insulation

By on July 7, 2011 in Compensability with 0 Comments

In addition to terminating temporary disability benefits on maximal medical improvement, an employer can terminate such benefits when the employee can return to work light or modified duty under Harbatuk v. S & S Furniture Systems Insulation, 211 N.J. Super. 614 (App. Div. 1986). The basic rule which emerges from Harbatuk is this:  the employer has […]

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Intentional Harm – Millison v. E.I. duPont deNemours & Co.

By on July 7, 2011 in Compensability with 0 Comments

In New Jersey it is very difficult to get past the exclusive remedy provision.  The leading case on proving an intentional harm claim sufficient to get beyond the exclusive remedy is Millison v. E.I. duPont de Nemours & Co., 101 N.J. 161 (1985) in which plaintiffs had shown intentional wrong by respondent in deliberately concealing […]

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Heart Case – Hellwig v. J.F. Rast & Co., Inc.

By on July 7, 2011 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

In a traumatic heart claim, New Jersey requires a comparison between work and non-work effort. The Central Issue Is:  Does A Claimant Have To Prove That The Work Effort Was Greater Than Both What He Usually Did At Work And What He Did Outside Of Work? The answer came in one of the most important […]

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One Strike You’re Out, Says The Ninth Circuit

By on June 28, 2011 in ADA with 0 Comments

The Pacific Maritime Association had a “one-strike” rule which screened out any applicant who tested positive for drug or alcohol use during the preemployment process.  Santiago Lopez, who was addicted to drugs and alcohol, tested positive for marijuana during his preemployment process in 1997 and was therefore disqualified from further consideration. In 2002 Lopez began […]

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