A Capehart Scatchard Blog

House Cleaner Injured on First Day of Work Was an Independent Contractor Not Covered Under Comp

By on August 23, 2012 in Compensability with 0 Comments

Luz Lukasik agreed to provide house cleaning services for Marguerite Hollaway and two others.  Respondents contacted Lukasik after hearing about her from an acquaintance.  At that time she was cleaning five or six other houses and one office building on a regular basis.  Petitioner Lukasik and her daughter went to the home of respondents and […]

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Third Circuit Holds That Employer Can Terminate Employee on FMLA for Violation of Paid Sick Leave Policy by Traveling Far From Home During Leave Without Permission

By on August 16, 2012 in FMLA with 0 Comments

Someone who is on FMLA is still subject to other leave policies like call-in policies and paid sick leave policies prohibiting distant travel The case of Denise Pellegrino v. Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO, 2012 U.S. App. Lexis 7902 (3d. Circuit 2012) offers important guidance for employers who struggle to deal with the FMLA in […]

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New Jersey Supreme Court Rules That Injured Employee May Not Sue Workers’ Comp Carrier for Pain and Suffering Caused Allegedly by Carrier’s Delay in Paying for Medical Services

By on August 6, 2012 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

On August 1, 2012, the New Jersey Supreme Court weighed in on an issue that has important implications for all practitioners of workers’ compensation in this state.  The decision in Stancil v. ACE USA A-112-10, 06764 concerned a civil law suit stemming from the handling of a compensable work accident that occurred on May 14, […]

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Accident Crossing Busy Street To Work Site Is Compensable Where County Paid For Parking And Designated Parking Spot

By on July 30, 2012 in Compensability with 2 Comments

In Hersh v. County of Morris, A-1442-10T4 (App. Div. July 24, 2012), the Appellate Division affirmed an award for claimant,Cheryl Hersh, who worked for Morris County.  For the first two years she worked for the County beginning in 2002, the County paid for parking at a private lot located behind her work site at the […]

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Court Holds Employer Must Pay Total Disability for Complex Groin Injury Without Second Injury Fund and Could Not Offer Surveillance Tapes Done Post-Testimony

By on July 23, 2012 in Compensability with 0 Comments

In the case of Marra v. Ryder Transportation Resources, A-5724-10T4 (App. Div. July 2, 2012), the Appellate Division affirmed a holding that the employer was solely responsible for total disability stemming from a groin injury that occurred 15 years ago. The petitioner, Gerard Marra, originally injured himself at work lifting a loading gate.  On January […]

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Town Wins Workers’ Comp Case by Proving Employee Engaged in Fraud in not Revealing Prior Medical Condition

By on July 12, 2012 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

The Judge of Compensation and Appellate Division found that the employee was entitled to no benefits based on his violation of the New Jersey Fraud Act In Johnnie Jackson v. Township of Montclair, A-2212-11T2 (App. Div. July 5, 2012), the claimant injured his knee while moving large boxes of books at the Montclair Public Library on […]

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Appelate Division Disapproves Dual Capacity Doctrine

By on July 5, 2012 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

Danielle Fry worked as a cook for Palroll Inc., trading as the Lakeside Tavern in Branchville, N.J.  Palroll operated the tavern and also owned the building in which it was located.  The owners of Palroll were the Rohls. On April 13, an employee of a bottling company delivered fifteen canisters of soda and one CO2 […]

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New Jersey Supreme Court Nearly Bars the Door to Claims for Inentional Harm

By on July 3, 2012 in Compensability with 0 Comments

In Van Dunk v. Reckson Associates Realty Corporation, (A-69-10) (066949), the Supreme Court of New Jersey on June 26, 2012 reversed an appellate division decision that had promised to breathe life into suits against employers for intentional harm. Reckson Associates Realty Corporation and Reckson Construction contracted with James Construction Company to build a retention pond […]

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Court Rejects Occupational Stress Claim

By on June 27, 2012 in Claims with 1 Comment

Employee could not prove objectively verified stressful conditions  New Jersey has a sensible occupational stress standard, namely that the person claiming work stress as a cause for psychiatric illness must prove objectively that the work conditions were stressful.  Since all employees experience some degree of stress, this standard is not very easily met. In Knight […]

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No Legal Malpractice Where Plaintiff Did Not See Comp Attorney Until Two Years After She Knew of Her Stress Condition and Relationship to Work

By on June 18, 2012 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

New Jersey has a statute of limitations for both traumatic and occupational disease claims.  In Millar v. Darren J. Del Sardo, Esq. A-4388-10T1 (App. Div. April 27, 2012), both statutes of limitations came into play. Plaintiff Cynthia Millar began working for Cablevision in 1997 as an account executive.  She began treating with a psychologist for […]

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Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals Holds That Plaintiff Failed to Adequately Explain How He Receives SSD Benefits and Can Still Be Able to Work

By on June 11, 2012 in ADA with 0 Comments

EEOC could not explain how employee could claim ability to work with accommodation while getting SSDI payments. Michael Turner worked for Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) as a unit secretary since 1984.  In 2005, Turner was hospitalized for necrotizing fasciitis, which is a life-threatening condition.  He later suffered a stroke during the same year. Turner also […]

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Appellate Court Finds Petitioner to be a Casual Employee

By on June 1, 2012 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

The casual employee defense remains viable in New Jersey.  It is a difficult defense to make in certain lines of employment such as trucking, real estate agents, newspaper delivery persons and cab drivers, but it remains viable in situations involving home remodeling and home additions. A good illustration is the recent case of Cruz v. […]

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Must an Employer Reassign an Employee with a Disability to a Vacant Position Even if More Qualified Candidates Exist?

By on May 21, 2012 in ADA with 0 Comments

The question is an important one and comes down to this: is the reassignment process competitive? Courts are split on the issue with the most recent decision coming in EEOC v. United Airlines, Inc., 673 F.3d 543, 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 4713 (7th Cir. 2012).  The case involved United Airlines’ company policy, which does not automatically […]

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Township is not Responsible for Surgery Sought by Police Officer Where Work Accident was not Proven to be the Cause for Low Back Surgery

By on May 14, 2012 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

Hugh McNeil was a long-time police officer for the Township of South Brunswick.  On April 3, 2010, McNeil responded to an emergency call.  He was wearing his bulletproof vest and gun belt and said that he hurriedly exited his vehicle, feeling pain in his back.  He said he might have hit the steering wheel but […]

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Dyslexia and Learning Disability Do Not Provide Exemption From Two-Year Statute of Limitations

By on May 7, 2012 in Key Defenses with 0 Comments

The statute of limitations is jurisdictional and nothing, other than perhaps insanity, relieves a claimant from the rule All states have statutes of limitations for filing compensation claims.  But are these statutes flexible under certain circumstance? The answer in New Jersey is emphatically no. In Zito v. AIC, A-1070-10T2 (App. Div. September 26, 2011), petitioner began […]

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