Mae Crumble v. Employment Services, et al.

Oct 17, 2016 | News, Workers' Compensation

By Courtney S. Paterson

Mae Crumble v. Express Employment Services, et al.

Docket No. 2016-07-0351

State File No. 99792-2015

Filed October 12, 2016


This is a case before the Appeals Board on an interlocutory appeal filed by the employer, and the dispute was whether the employer should be required to provide the employee with a panel of orthopedic specialists.


The employee alleged a right shoulder injury on November 14, 2015, when she was moving a heavy bar over her head in various directions. She stated she informed her supervisor immediately but did not seek medical attention. She then requested to be assigned a less strenuous position and the supervisor complied with the request. Her assignment with the employer was terminated on December 11, 2015, as they did not have a permanent position to offer her.

The employee sought treatment for her injuries on her own at the ER on December 16, 2015. After leaving the ER, the employee went to the employer’s office to discuss her alleged injury. During the meeting, the employee was provided with a panel of physicians that included two walk-in medical facilities and an occupational medicine physician. Thereafter, the employer denied the claim on the basis that the authorized physician had opined the injury was not work-related.

Following an expedited hearing, the trial court determined the employee was a credible witness and had provided proper notice of her injury. The trial court further determined the employee would likely prevail at a hearing on the merits but denied the employee’s request for temporary disability benefits. The employer appealed.

The appeals board determined that, because the appeal hinges upon issues not resolved by the trial court, specifically whether the doctor who examined the employee was an authorized treating physician and whether his causation opinion is entitled to a presumption of correctness, the appeals board vacated the trial court’s decision and remanded the case to resolve those issues.


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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