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Massachusetts Reviewing Board Recommits Workers’ Compensation Case Where Judge Failed to Issue Findings

In Hester v. City of Boston Public Health Commission, a Massachusetts worker appealed an administrative law judge’s decision denying her request for §§ 13 and 30 workers’ compensation benefits to the Department of Industrial Accidents Reviewing Board. According to the worker, although the judge issued an award for permanent and total incapacity benefits, his order denying the employee’s request for nursing assistance and housekeeping services was arbitrary and capricious because the judge failed to issue findings in support of his decision.

After examining the record, the Board stated the administrative judge’s failure to issue such findings made it impossible for it to determine whether he correctly applied Massachusetts law. In addition, the Board found that the worker submitted enough evidence to support her claim for such benefits. As a result, the Board agreed that the judge’s decision was arbitrary and capricious and recommitted the case for further findings. Additionally, the Board ruled that the worker may be entitled to recover the costs associated with her legal fees under § 13A(7). Because of this, the Board stated the employee’s attorney was authorized to submit a bill to the Board for its consideration.

An unexpected workplace accident can leave employees seriously injured or worse. The Massachusetts workers’ compensation system is a “no fault,” comprehensive program that requires employers to provide insurance designed to protect employees who suffered a disabling job-related injury or condition. It is designed to obviate the need to bring a personal injury claim against the employer so that the injured person can receive compensation more efficiently.

In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, employees who are unable to work for five days or more due to a workplace injury are authorized to receive a weekly financial benefit and any associated medical expenses. In certain situations, vocational retraining may be available to workers whose on-the-job injury prevents them from returning to a previous occupation. Workers’ compensation benefits are also available to the surviving spouse and any dependents of an individual who was killed as a result of a work-related accident or illness. A skilled Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyer can help.

Unfortunately, the Massachusetts workers’ compensation system can be difficult to navigate on your own. If you or someone you love suffered a serious injury in a Massachusetts workplace accident, you may be eligible to recover workers’ compensation benefits. The caring attorneys at Kantrovitz & Associates, P.C. are available to help you navigate the sometimes confusing process of filing your workers’ compensation benefits claim. To speak with a seasoned Massachusetts workers’ compensation lawyer about your rights today, you are advised to contact Kantrovitz & Associates, P.C. through our website or call us at 800-367-0871.

Additional Resources:

Hester v. City of Boston Public Health Commission, Department of Industrial Accidents Reviewing Board Decision No. 019633-00 (August 25, 2015)

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