The Claimant worked as a security guard. A nearby refinery released chemical fumes including naphthalene. The Claimant alleged an occupational exposure and sought medical care from two different facilities. He was diagnosed with unspecified chest pain and chemical pneumonitis. He produced in evidence a news report documenting the release of chemicals at the refinery. The Hearing Officer found the Claimant sustained a compensable injury in the course and scope of employment.
The Appeals Panel found the medical records did not contain an explanation of how an exposure to or inhalation of a substance the Claimant may have encountered in the course and scope of his employment caused damage or harm to the physical structure of the body. They noted the proof of causation may be difficult to obtain but such difficulty does not relieve the Claimant of the burden of proof. The Appeals Panel reversed and rendered the Hearing Officer's decision and order.
Disclaimer: WorkersCompensation.com publishes independently generated writings from a variety of workers' compensation industry stakeholders. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of WorkersCompensation.com.