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Case Law Library

Case Name: Batton v. Alten Construction, Inc. 04/08/2013
Summary: Batton sued the general contractor, defendant Alten Construction, Inc. (Alten), for damages, asserting claims for negligence, negligence per se, and breach of contract (on a third party beneficiary theory). Alten contended Batton's negligence causes of action failed because Alten "owed no duty of care to [Batton] having contractually and impliedly delegated that duty to [Batton's] employer, [Galletti]. "As to the breach of contract cause of action, Alten argued Batton lacked standing to pursue third party beneficiary recovery. Batton submitted excerpts of deposition testimony by employees of Alten and Kwan Wo about the construction of the stairway and other matters. Batton agrees the stairway was not a latent hazardous condition of which Alten had a duty to warn Batton, and he does not seek to impose liability on that basis.
Note: The employee of an independent contractor hired to perform work on a construction project presented sufficient evidence that the contractor on the project retained control over the stairwell where the employee fell to preclude summary judgment under the Privette doctrine.
Citation: A135146
WCC Citation: WCC 39992013 CA
Case Name: Baur vs. WCAB and City of Stockton 08/21/2009
Summary: In this case, petitioner Lance Baur, a police officer employed by respondent City of Stockton (the city), was injured on the job during an altercation with suspect Richard Thomas Beck. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND Officer Baur was employed by the city in August 2003 when he was injured on the job by suspect Beck. As a result of Baur's injuries, the city provided Baur with $74,408. 79 in workers' compensation benefits. In settlement of the lawsuit, CIGA agreed to pay $50,000 to Baur, and the city agreed to release its lien. Baur objected to the credit, claiming the city has no credit rights in this matter for the same reasons .
Note: Municipality that paid workers' compensation benefits is entitled to a credit whether the tortfeasor's insurer was a solvent company or CIGA and whether the recovery was for general or special damages.
Citation: C061042
WCC Citation: WCC 35562009 CA
Case Name: Bautista v. State of California 12/06/2011
Summary: BAUTISTA v. STATE MARGARITA ALVAREZ BAUTISTA et al. , Plaintiffs and Appellants, v. STATE OF CALIFORNIA et al. , Defendants and Respondents. The complaint alleges there is a constitutional duty on the part of the state to create a workers' compensation system that adequately protects the safety of farm workers in California. DISCUSSION This appeal presents two constitutional issues affecting the viability of appellants' lawsuit against the state and the named state agencies. Labor Code section 3300, subdivision (a) of the Workers' Compensation Act defines employer as, among others, "[t]he State and every State agency. "The individual plaintiffs include Margarita Alvarez Bautista, Ana Rosa Bautista, Socorro Rivera, Mauricia Calvillo, and Natividad Carrillo.
Note: The 2nd District Court of Appeal issued a published decision affirming the dismissal of a lawsuit contending that the state of California failed to protect farm workers from heat-related illnesses.
Citation: B226102
WCC Citation: WCC 38302011 CA
Case Name: Bawaan v. Civil Service Commission of Los Angeles County 09/11/2012
Summary: JANET BAWAAN, Plaintiff and Appellant, v. CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY, Defendant and Respondent; COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES, Real Party in Interest and Respondent. The court concluded, based on its independent review of the evidence presented during appellant's three-day administrative hearing before the Los Angeles County Civil Service Commission (the Commission) that appellant was properly medically released from her position with the Department of Mental Health (the Department) for the County of Los Angeles (the County) in 2003 because the evidence demonstrated that she had been totally disabled and unable to work in any capacity since 1995. By letter dated October 31, 2003, the Department informed appellant that effective that date, she was medically released "without prejudice" under Los Angeles County Civil Service Rule 9. 08. The notice reiterated that appellant had been medically released without prejudice under Los Angeles County Civil Service Rule 9. 08, effective October 31, 2003, and reiterated the reasons expressed in the 2003 letters. Although the rules at issue are Civil Service Rules, promulgated by the County, the normal rules of statutory construction apply.
Note: A municipal employer could rely on competent medical and legal evidence to conclude that an employee with severe, long-standing and debilitating psychiatric conditions was unable to perform her regular duties or any alternate position, and was not required to await resolution of her workers' compensation claim before medically releasing her from employment.
Citation: B230200
WCC Citation: WCC 39312012 CA
Case Name: Baxter v. Riverside Community College District 04/03/2012
Summary: BAXTER v. RIVERSIDE COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT MARY BAXTER, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. RIVERSIDE COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT, Defendant and Appellant. INTRODUCTION Defendant Riverside Community College District (RCCD) appeals from judgment following the trial court's granting of the petition for writ of mandate filed by plaintiff Mary Baxter seeking reinstatement to her teaching position with RCCD. Baxter contends she believed she was a permanent employee with a right to return within 39 months. Baxter filed a petition for writ of mandate on June 9, 2008, requesting reinstatement and back pay to February 21, 2006. Where good cause exists, the District may request that an employee undergo a fitness-for-duty examination by a licensed physician, at District expense.
Note: A disabled college professor was not entitled to reinstatement after taking disability leave because she did not provide adequate notice of her ability to return to work.
Citation: E052406
WCC Citation: WCC 38822012 CA
Case Name: Bazzini v. Technicolor, Inc. 01/21/2010
Summary: INTRODUCTION In this lawsuit, plaintiff and appellant Terry Bazzini and his wife, plaintiff and appellant Phyllis Bazzini, sued Mr. Bazzini's ex- employer, defendant and respondent Technicolor, Inc. , for personal injuries. Technicolor did not provide Mr. Bazzini with protective devises that would have prevented the chemicals from touching Mr. Bazzini's skin and Technicolor did not refer Mr. Bazzini to a physician. Additionally, plaintiffs allege Ms. Bazzini developed severe illnesses and injuries, including urinary infections and red spots on her bladder wall through secondary exposure to the chemicals Mr. Bazzini brought home on his body and clothes. With regard to Mr. Bazzini, Technicolor argued any redress was limited to workers' compensation as it did not fraudulently conceal from Mr. Bazzini any work-related injury or illness. Since the trial court properly granted summary judgment to Technicolor with regard to Mr. Bazzini, it also properly granted summary judgment with regard to Ms. Bazzini.
Note: Workers' compensation is the only redress for an employee who contracted cancer from chemical exposure at work because he submitted no proof that his employer concealed the danger and caused an aggravation of his injury.
Citation: B205947
WCC Citation: WCC 35932010 CA
Case Name: Beaida v. WCAB 06/17/1968
Summary: JOSEPH BEAIDA, Petitioner, v. WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEALS BOARD, PLACER COUNTY HOSPITAL et al. , Respondents. In summary, WCAB takes the position that Dr. Cummings' September 26 letter was not entitled to recognition as a pleading or petition, since the claimant still had an attorney of record; that the attorney, not the doctor, was the claimant's spokesman in the WCAB proceedings. It vests WCAB with jurisdiction to make the award if the injured employee institutes proceedings within five years of the injury date. A broader proceeding is available under sections 5803 and 5804, which authorize WCAB to amend an award upon a good cause where the disability has recurred or increased. The response of WCAB and the oral argument in this court discussed section 5803 as well.
Note: Doctor's letter to WCAB asking for adjustment in disability rating was valid petition for review, timely filed.
Citation: 263 Cal.App.2d 204, 33 CCC 345
WCC Citation: WCC 26421968 CA
Case Name: Becerra v. Eastside Reservior Proj., et. al. 07/17/1997
Summary: Ramon Becerra, Applicant v. Eastside Reservoir Project/Advanco Constructors, Hartford Accident & Indemnity Company, Defendants. WCAB No. AHM 51304 CCC 937 July 17, 1997 The Order Granting Reconsideration is vacated and defendant's petition for reconsideration is dismissed. When their petition for dismissal was not granted, defendants filed a Petition for Reconsideration. We have completed our study and, as explained below, we will vacate the order granting reconsideration, grant removal, and dismiss the Application. Defendants filed a petition for reconsideration arguing that the workers' compensation referee (WCR) erred in refusing to grant their petition for dismissal of the Application.
Note: Proper procedure to follow involving 3201.5 cases.
Citation: 62 CCC 937
WCC Citation: WCC 3941997 CA
Case Name: Bed, Bath & Beyond v. WCAB 12/13/2007
Summary: IN THE COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA SIXTH APPELLATE DISTRICT BED, BATH & BEYOND, Petitioner, v. WORKERS' COMPENSATION APPEALS BOARD and KIM COSTA, Respondents. Bed, Bath & Beyond petitions for review of the WCAB's decision, contending that the WCJ should have applied the 2005 permanent disability rating schedule. Bed, Bath & Beyond petitioned the WCAB for reconsideration of the permanent disability award, arguing that the WCJ should have applied the 2005 permanent disability rating schedule to calculate Costa's permanent disability, pursuant to section 4660, subdivision (d). Standard of Review The appellate courts are authorized to review WCAB decisions and to issue a writ of review pursuant to section 5950. The WCAB panel relied on the en banc decision in Pendergrass I, supra, 72 Cal. Comp. Cases at page 98, where the WCAB stated that "for purposes of section 4660 .
Note: [Unpublished] An employer is not required to provide a notice of permanent disability benefits until the last temporary disability payment is made or has become due.
Citation: H031400
WCC Citation: WCC 32882007 CA
Case Name: Bekins Moving & Storage Company v. WCAB 11/23/1982
Summary: BEKINS MOVING & STORAGE COMPANY, Petitioner, v. WORKERS' COMPENSATION APPEALS BOARD and GEORGE HANSEN, Respondents. Applicant George Hansen injured his back on January 20, 1975, while employed by Bekins Moving & Storage Company (hereafter Bekins) as a furniture mover. Before the hearing, Hansen returned to work with Bekins, but he left in 1976 to form his own furniture moving business in Santa Cruz, California. Bekins concluded upon review of the reports and analysis that Mr. Hansen was not in need of rehabilitation. The Bureau disagreed and ordered Bekins to refer Mr. Hansen to a qualified rehabilitation specialist and to pay the applicant temporary disability benefits while rehabilitation was underway.
Note: There is a five year statute of limitations for requests for rehabilitation.
Citation: 137 Cal.App.3d 665, 47 CCC 1260
WCC Citation: WCC 25031982 CA
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