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Man entitled to benefits for injuries sustained on the job

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Finding that a construction supervisor’s receipt of unemployment benefits didn’t preclude him from eligibility for temporary total disability benefits, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a total award of more than $61,000 to the injured worker.

Christopher Collings was injured while at work for Platinum Construction Group when a wall fell on him during the framing of a house. He was initially given $3,180 in temporary total disability benefits. When he was released by his doctor to full duty, those benefits ended. But at that time, Platinum laid off its employees and closed its doors. Collings attempted to find work at other construction companies and tried to start his own company, but was unable to earn more than $1,200 due to pain from his injuries.

He filed for unemployment benefits and later sought a second opinion on his injuries, which led a doctor to rate his permanent partial impairment at 18 percent. That’s when Collings filed for an adjustment of claim with the Indiana Worker’s Compensation Board. A hearing member awarded him $35,526 in additional TTD benefits, plus 26,210 in PPI benefits. The full board affirmed.

Platinum argued in Platinum Construction Group, LLC v. Christopher Collings, 93A02-1210-EX-882, that Collings couldn’t receive additional TTD benefits because he received unemployment benefits.

“Simply put, Collings was unable to perform work of the same kind and character due to the injuries that he suffered while working for Platinum. As a result, he met the statutory requirements to receive TTD benefits. After Dr. Yergler released him to full duty, he attempted to perform construction work but was unsuccessful. At the same time, he was willing, able, and available to work in a capacity that was less physically taxing, as required by the unemployment compensation statute,” Judge Terry Crone wrote. “Because the Board credited Platinum for the sums that Collings had received as unemployment benefits, Collings did not receive a windfall. Thus, his benefits cannot be characterized as duplicative. Under these facts, the Board did not err in concluding that Collings’s receipt of unemployment benefits did not preclude him from eligibility for TTD benefits.”

Platinum also challenged the sufficiency of the board’s findings support its order awarding Collings money for PPI, but it appeared that the company was challenging the relative credibility of the physicians who examined Collings. The Court of Appeals reminded Platinum that it may not reweigh evidence or judge witness credibility.


 

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  1. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  2. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  3. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  4. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

  5. I totally agree with John Smith.

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