Defense Prevails in Workers' Comp Litigation
Successfully defended a large Pennsylvania transportation authority in litigation surrounding a claimant's alleged lumbar spine disc aggravation injury that allegedly occurred during the course and scope of his employment. The claimant originally sustained a low back injury in 1999. He eventually returned to work to a lighter-duty cashier position and worked more than a decade before leaving work and collecting an employer-sponsored pension. Two years into his receipt of the pension, the claimant alleged a new workplace injury dating back to one of the last days he physically worked. The claimant presented a medical expert who opined that the claimant "aggravated" the 1999 low back condition by "sitting on a stool," among other things, at work, causing debilitating lumbar radiculopathy and worsened two pre-existing disc herniations. On cross-examination, the defense established that the "expert" medical opinions offered on direct were contrary to the opinions contained in the medical notes in the doctor's file. The claimant admitted on cross-examination that no new injury took place prior to his retirement and receipt of pension and the judge dismissed the claim petition summarily.