Under South Carolina workers’ compensation law, a person who is hurt at work may be entitled to payment of certain benefits. These include medical care, temporary total disability, and permanent partial disability in many cases. If an employee disagrees with his or her award, there are steps that can be taken to appeal the administrative law judge’s ruling. On appeal, the employee has the burden of convincing the reviewing court that an error was made by the workers’ compensation commission.
Facts of the Case
In a recent unreported case, the plaintiff allegedly injured his left foot while working for the defendant, a temporary staffing agency. He filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits against the defendant and its workers’ compensation insurance carrier (also a defendant in his suit). Displeased with the holding of the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission regarding his claim, the plaintiff sought review from the appellate court.
The Court’s Ruling
In his appeal to the South Carolina Court of Appeals, the plaintiff argued some 19 issues, including averments that a single commissioner had violated his rights by failing to enforce certain subpoenas, failing to accept deposition testimony, and providing insufficient notice of the review hearing. After considering each of the issues raised by the plaintiff on appeal, the court affirmed the commission’s decision. With regard to four of the issues presented by the plaintiff, the court held that the appellate panel had not erred in reviewing only the specific issue that the appeal panel ordered to be remanded at the remand hearing. As to four other additional issues raised by the plaintiff, the court of appeals determined that such issues had not been properly preserved for review by an appellate court. The court also sided with the defendants on the issue of whether the appellate panel had acted properly in refusing to extend the time for oral arguments.