N e w s l e t t e r
June 2020
Meet the Pollart Miller Arizona Team! 
Arizona #034261
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Pollart Miller can handle your Workers Compensation and General Litigation needs in Arizona, and we continue serving our clients in Colorado, Utah, Nebraska, and Idaho.
Compensability and Withdrawing Admissions of Liability – Fraud – Respondents Proved that the Claimant Misrepresented Her Medical History and Reported Mechanism of Injury To Obtain Benefits - Claimant was a food preparation specialist for an airline. She reported a work injury on September 5, 2016. Specifically, the Claimant reported that the injury occurred when a wheel fell off a cart and she injured her shoulder ... [more]
Jurisdiction determined to be inappropriate with the Utah Labor Commission once Petitioner initiated the workers' compensation process in Colorado - The ALJ in this matter made findings that Petitioner was initially hired by Respondent, Atlas Van Lines in 1995 as a truck driver. In 2004, Petitioner became an owner operator for the same company ... [more]
TTD not payable when Claimant fails to attend a demand appointment after being ordered to attend, and setting demand appointments is not dictating medical care - Claimant had an accepted injury to his right shoulder in 2015. After appropriate treatment, he was placed at MMI by his orthopedic treater on July 11, 2019. The treater noted that Claimant was stable for ... [more]
Petitioner's testimony is insufficient to prove a medical controversy in Order to assign a Medical Panel - The Order in the Quorp matter shows the importance of arguing a lack of medical controversy should Petitioner’s proceed to hearing without clear medical documentation rebutting Respondents’ IME opinion. The Order also shows that with the right facts, the Judge’s will by-pass the medical panel ... [more]
Compensability—The quality of expert opinions outweighs quantity - Claimant was a police officer for the City of Glenwood Springs who claimed he sustained a compensable head injury when he hit his head attempting to arrest a suspect. On the night of the incident claimant and four other officers wrote incident reports detailing the incident as well as injuries sustained by the officers involved in the altercation ... [more]
Insurance coverage denied where employer materially misrepresents the scope of its work in its application for insurance, and fails to provide notice of its work in a state not endorsed for primary coverage - Claimant’s employer was a subcontractor on a large construction project. The employer applied for worker’s compensation coverage and in the application for the policy, confirmed no work was done at heights on exterior buildings above two stories ... [more]
Compensability and Withdrawing Admissions of Liability – Fraud – Respondents Demonstrated that the Claimant Lied about the Details of an Alleged Work Injury To Obtain Benefits -
Claimant was a cook for a fast food restaurant. He reported a work injury on November 28, 2014. Specifically, the Claimant reported that he was randomly assaulted by several men when taking out the trash. Due to the fact that Claimant ... [more]
Arizona Workers' Compensation
For cancer to be presumptively work-related in a firefighter, specific statutory criteria must be met - In Forbach , the applicant worked the City of Flagstaff as both a paramedic and a firefighter. As a teenager, the applicant was diagnosed with right side testicular cancer and it was surgically removed... [more]

An ALJ is not required to specifically address every witnesses’ credibility - In Baier , the applicant sustained an admitted work-related injury to his lumbar spine when he was attempting to pull open a steel gate that was stuck. The applicant had severe pain and underwent physical therapy, medications, and injections... [more]
Colorado Workers' Compensation
Once an employer or insurer overcomes the DIME, an ALJ has the authority to determine claimant’s MMI status and permanent impairment rating as questions of fact  - In Destination Maternity , the Colorado Supreme Court considered whether the Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ)” had authority to place a claimant at maximum medical improvement (“MMI”) after concluding the employer had overcome the findings of the Division Independent Medical Examination (“DIME”) physician that the claimant had not reached MMI... [more]

Calculating the average weekly wage: No need to include the cost of health insurance premiums if coverage is available and the claimant is still employed
- The claimant appealed an order of an Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) who denied his request to increase his average weekly wage (“AWW”) by the cost of the health insurance premiums paid by the claimant and his employer. The Industrial Claims Appeals Office (“the Panel”) affirmed... [more]

Independent Contractor Analysis - The Colorado Workers’ Compensation Act (“the Act”) excludes independent contractors from presenting compensable claims. However, in some cases, it may be difficult to determine whether a claimant should be considered an employee or an independent contractor. In Holsinger Drywall Inc. v. ICAO ,... [more]

Injuries Resultant of Reasonable Treatment - In a workers’ compensation claim, an employer “shall furnish such medical, surgical, dental, nursing, and hospital treatment…as may be reasonably needed at the time of injury or occupational disease and thereafter during the disability to cure and relieve the employee from the effects of the injury.” The issue addressed by the Industrial Claims Appeals Office (“the Panel”) in Marcella v. Teltech... [more]

Compensable Risks per City of Brighton Case   - It is well-known that compensability relies on whether an injury arose from either employment risk or neutral risk categories as defined by City of Brighton v. Rodriguez , 318 P.3d 496 (Colo. 2014). If an injury arises out of a purely personal risk, such an injury will not be compensable under workers’ compensation...[ more]

Incident v. Injury - It is a standard and reinforced concept in workers’ compensation that claims may be compensable when injuries arise out of employment risks or neutral risks. In Washburn v. City Market , the Industrial Claims Appeals Office (“the Panel”) decided whether the ALJ erred in finding that this workplace incident did not rise to the level of being considered a compensable work injury,...[ more]

Scope of Employee’s Duties – Workplace Assault - In Stanfield v. Maru , The court was tasked with determining whether the ALJ erred in finding that Claimant sustained a compensable injury while engaging in a non-traditional work duty... [more]

Premises Liability - Under the “coming and going rule,” workers’ compensation claims are not compensable if a claimant is injured while going to or coming from work. Such travel is not considered to be “performance of services arising out of the course of employment.”... [more]
2020 Legislative Session
The 2020 session reconvened on May 26, 2020 after the historic break due to COVID-19. Because there are strict rules regarding how long the session can be and what bills must be passed (i.e. budget), the focus was the State Budget and the School Finance Act. The end of the 2020 session’s end date is June 15, 2020.. [more]
Family Law Update
Not a Valid Excuse to Deny Parenting Time in Colorado - Covid-19 has changed many things; how we shop, how we work, how our children learn and how we interact with others, to name a few. It has even changed how attorneys present cases in a court of law. Many individuals have reached out to inquire how Covid-19 impacts their parenting time order, if at all. In Colorado, the Courts have been clear that the Covid-19 pandemic is does not excuse a lack of compliance with court ordered parenting time...[ more]