By Courtney S. Paterson

Douglas Lee Bolden v. Lowe’s Home Centers, Inc., et al. 

Docket No. 2016-05-1033

State File No. 50919-2016

Filed April 21, 2017

Posture

This is a case before the Appeals Board on interlocutory appeal filed by the employee, and the dispute was whether the employer should be required to provide the employee additional medical benefits.

Douglas Lee Bolden, the employee, alleged injuries to his left ankle and knee on July 1, 2016. His employer, Lowe’s Home Centers, Inc., et al., accepted the claim as compensable and provided him benefits. Mr. Bolden chose Dr. John Salyer as his authorized treating physician. Dr. Salyer diagnosed him with a ligament sprain. When he returned to Dr. Salyer on September 1, 2016, for a follow-up, he reported that, while he was on vacation, he “pushed off a rock with his left leg” and was “having pain in his left ankle again.”

His employer then denied the claim, asserting that his current complaints were due to an independent intervening incident unrelated to his work activities. Mr. Bolden filed a petition for benefit determination and request for expedited hearing. At the hearing, the trial court concluded that he failed to exercise due case for his work-related injury while on vacation and denied his request for additional workers’ compensation benefits.

The appeals board affirmed the trial court’s decision that the employee’s actions constituted an independent intervening cause that severed the chain of causation.

 

An associate with Spicer Rudstrom since 2009, Courtney focuses her practice on automobile liability, insurance coverage litigation, insurance defense litigation, insurance subrogation, premises liability, products liability and workers’ compensation. She is admitted to practice in all trial and appellate state courts in Tennessee, as well as the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee.

 

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