The Washington Court of Appeals recently issued a decision favorable to self-insured employers with regard to post-pension treatment in Second Injury Fund pension cases. The issue in The Boeing Co. & Patricia Doss v. Dep’t of Labor and Indus., No. 69759-1, (WA Ct. of Appeals Div. 1, March 31, 2014) was: who pays for Department-authorized post-pension treatment in self-insured Second Injury Fund pensions?
Washington State adheres to the axiom that its workers’ compensation system provides coverage to a worker injured in the course of employments without consideration of fault. On occasion the “no-fault” system seems to trivialize personal responsibility. The recent decision of the Washington State Court of Appeals, however, is a refreshing reminder that claimants of benefits under the Industrial Insurance Act do have at least a modicum of responsibility for their own personal well-being.
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision on March 26, 2014, which found that university scholarship football athletes are “employees” under the National Labor Relations Act. In the decision, Regional Director Peter Sung Ohr, of Region 13 (Chicago), noted that the combination of the university’s restrictions on the activities that scholarship football athletes could engage in; the time requirements it placed on the athletes; recruitment of the athletes for solely their athletic abilities; payment to the athletes in the form of large scholarships; the athletes generate millions of dollars in revenue for the institution; and special rules governing the athletes beyond those applied to other students amounted to control over the athletes which fell within the definition of an employer-employee relationship.
A recent Washington Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals ruling may give Washington employers more direction in dealing with a claimant who has misrepresented their injuries.
Two recent Washington cases deal with the issue of penalties for delayed payments, one in the case of delayed payment of medical bills, and the other dealing with delayed payment of previously assessed penalties.