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Protz II prompts Commonwealth Court to reverse a Workers’ Compensation Judge’s decision to modify benefits based on an IRE performed in 2005 using the Fifth Edition of the AMA Guides.

January 19, 2018
Debra Thompson v. WCAB (Exelon Corporation); No. 1227 C.D. 2016; filed Aug. 16, 2017; Judge Brobson

In her second appeal to the Commonwealth Court, the claimant argued that the Workers’ Compensation Judge erred in concluding that her benefits were modified based on an IRE performed using the Fifth Edition of the AMA Guides, which the Commonwealth Court declared unconstitutional in Protz v. WCAB (Derry Area School District), 124 A.3d 406, 416 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2015) (Protz I). The Commonwealth Court reversed the Appeal Board’s opinion, affirming modification of the claimant’s benefits from total to partial based on the Supreme Court’s holding in Protz II, 161 A.3d 827 (Pa. 2017). According to the court, in Protz II, the Supreme Court struck the entirety of Section 306 (A.2) of the Act as unconstitutional and, in effect, eliminated the entire IRE process from the Act.

 

Case Law Alerts, 1st Quarter, January 2018

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