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Appellate Decision Renews Viability of "Course and Scope" Defense in Workers’ Compensation

Marshall Dennehey’s appellate and workers’ compensation team successfully defended a major Pennsylvania transportation authority in the four-year litigation of a claim petition arising out of an altercation between the claimant, a bus driver, and a bus patron. The claim was first brought before the Workers’ Compensation Judge and the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board, garnering a finding that the claimant was not in the course and scope of employment at the time of the altercation. Our appellate attorneys handled the appeal before the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, solidifying the holding that the claimant’s actions were so wholly foreign to his job duties as he was not in the course and scope of his employment at the time of the fisticuffs. This decision renews the viability of a "course and scope" defense as a distinct manner of relief separate from an analogous "violation of positive work order" defense in a workers’ compensation case.

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