By Courtney S. Paterson
Clarence Bass v. The Home Depot U.S.A., Inc., et al.
Docket No. 2016-06-1038
State File No. 59924-2014
Filed May 26, 2017
This is a case before the Appeals Board on an interlocutory appeal filed by the employee, and the dispute was whether the employer should be required to provide medical benefits.
The employee, Clarence Bass, alleged suffering an injury to his right wrist on August 1, 2014, while collecting shopping carts in the employer’s parking lot. Although Mr. Bass initially declined medical care, he ultimately received a panel and chose Dr. Philip Coogan. Dr. Coogan recommended carpal tunnel surgery but noted that the procedure should be performed outside the workers’ compensation system, as it was not related to the work injury.
Thereafter, the employer, The Home Depot U.S.A., Inc., denied the claim. Mr. Bass was then examined by another orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Robert Landsberg, who opined that the need for surgery was causally related to the work injury. The trial court found that Mr. Bass had not established by a preponderance of the evidence that his need for medical treatment arose primarily out of his employment and denied his request for benefits.
The Appeals Board affirmed the decision of the trial court, finding that the evidence is insufficient to rebut the presumption of correctness afforded the authorized treating physician.
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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