NCCI's Court Case Update: Looking Back at 2022


Since first published in 2018, NCCI’s Court Case Update has provided stakeholders with important and timely information on relevant workers compensation (WC) decisions that have impacted and shaped the system, reporting on over 200 cases. In 2022, NCCI’s Legal Division continued to report on the outcome of several cases that address different topics such as exclusive remedy, marijuana, air ambulance reimbursement, and COVID-19.

This report provides a high-level overview of the 46 cases reported on in 2022, grouped by topics.  

Exclusive Remedy

Court challenges to the constitutionality and scope of exclusive remedy—providing employer immunity from injured employee tort suits—continues to be a closely watched topic among WC stakeholders. In 2022, we reported on decisions addressing the applicability of and exceptions to exclusive remedy.

2022 Exclusive Remedy Decisions:


With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, NCCI began monitoring COVID-19-related cases with potential implications for WC insurance. Many of the cases to date have dealt with determinations of whether contraction of COVID-19 is work-related and therefore compensable, or the application of exclusive remedy where employees contract COVID-19 and sue their employers in tort. In 2022, we also saw courts consider the issue of whether an employer is liable in tort for injuries sustained by the spouse of an employee who allegedly contracted COVID-19 at work and spread it to the spouse at home.

2022 COVID-19 Decisions:

Marijuana Developments

Marijuana legalization has been a hot topic at the state and federal levels for some time and in 2022 courts actively reviewed marijuana-related issues in WC and the workplace, with varying outcomes across the states.

Marijuana in WC 2022 Decisions:

Marijuana and the Workplace 2022 Decisions:

Air Ambulance Reimbursement

Courts have continued to review cases addressing whether state WC laws limiting air ambulance billing rates are preempted by the federal Airline Deregulation Act of 1978 (ADA). In 2022, we reported on cases in two states, Texas and Kansas, addressing issues related to this topic.

2022 Air Ambulance Decisions:

Additional State and Federal Developments

Across the states and at the federal level, courts have continued to consider cases that could impact the WC system and its stakeholders. These cases address issues such as compensability, constitutional challenges to WC laws, benefits, and attorney fees, to mention a few.  

Federal Case

Northeastern Zone Cases  

Southeastern Zone Cases  

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