Injured workers want prompt resolutions of their workers’ compensation claims. A recent Nebraska Supreme Court decision allows for faster resolution of workers’ compensation claims.
In the case of Jacobitz v. Aurora Cooperative, the employer disputed that Jacobitz was even hurt at work. The workers’ compensation court agreed to a hearing solely on the issue of whether Jacobitz was hurt at work. If the court agreed that Jacobitz was hurt at work, then the court was to schedule a trial on his entitlement to benefits. The workers’ compensation court agreed that Jacobitz was hurt at work, but the employer appealed the decision that Jacobitz was injured at work.
The Nebraska Supreme Court dismissed the appeal without getting to the substance of the employer’s appeal. The court’s reason for doing so was that allowing the employer to appeal solely on the issue of liability unfairly delayed payment of benefits to injured workers. In essence, the employer could appeal the issue of liability, and they could appeal the issue of benefits as well. Meanwhile, the employee isn’t receiving any workers’ compensation benefits during the appeals process.
Jacobitz was a good decision for Nebraska employees.