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Clarke v. UTC/Sikorsky Aircraft

CASE NO. 1327 CRD-4-91-10

COMPENSATION REVIEW BOARD

WORKERS’ COMPENSATION COMMISSION

SEPTEMBER 2, 1993

MURIEL CLARKE

CLAIMANT-APPELLEE

v.

UTC/SIKORSKY AIRCRAFT

EMPLOYER

and

CIGNA INSURANCE COMPANY

INSURER

RESPONDENTS-APPELANTS

APPEARANCES:

The claimant was represented by Jamie L. Mills, Esq., Rosenblatt & Mills, 10 North Main Street, West Hartford, CT 06107 who appeared at oral argument but did not file a brief.

The respondents were represented by Jason Dodge, Esq. and Anne Kelly Zovas, Esq., Pomeranz, Drayton & Stabnick, 95 Glastonbury Blvd, Glastonbury, CT 06033.

This Petition for Review from the October 18, 1991 Finding and Award of the Commissioner for the Fourth District was heard October 30, 1992 before a Compensation Review Board panel consisting of Commission Chairman Jesse Frankl and Commissioners Angelo L. dos Santos and Donald H. Doyle, Jr.

OPINION

JESSE FRANKL, CHAIRMAN. The respondents petitioned for review from the Fourth District Commissioner’s October, 18, 1991 Finding and Award. The respondents challenge the trial commissioner’s conclusion that the claimant suffered a compensable injury to her low back on September 21, 1988 arising out of and in the course of her employment with the respondent employer.

On September 21, 1988, the claimant suffered an injury to her neck in the course of her employment with the respondent employer. The respondents acknowledged responsibility for the neck injury pursuant to a Voluntary Agreement approved by the commissioner on May 7, 1991.

In addition to the neck injury, the claimant alleged that she injured her back as a result of the September 21, 1988 workplace incident. The respondents deny that the claimant’s back complaints are causally related to the injury of September 21, 1988, and contend the claimant suffered a non-work trauma that caused her back injury. The sole issue before the commissioner was whether the claimant’s back injury was casually related to the September 21, 1988 incident. The commissioner found such a casual relationship and concluded that the back injury was therefore compensable. This appeal followed.

On appeal, the respondents contend that the commissioner’s findings are unreasonable and against the weight of the evidence. We disagree.

The conclusions of a trial commissioner “must stand unless they result from an incorrect application of the law to the subordinate facts or from an inference illegally or unreasonably drawn from them.” Fair v. People’s Savings Bank, 207 Conn. 535, 539 (1988), quoting Adzima v. UAC/Norden Division, 177 Conn. 107, 118 (1979). The conclusion reached below was dependent upon the weight and credibility accorded the evidence. We will not disturb conclusions which are so based. Tovish v. Gerber Electronics, 32 Conn. App. 595 (1993); Neal v. UTC/Pratt & Whitney, 10 Conn. Workers’ Comp. Rev. Op. 163, 1199 CRD-8-91-3 (1992). Because we do not retry the facts, it was within the province of the trial commissioner to resolve any alleged inconsistencies or contradictions in the evidence. See Miller v. Kirshner, 225 Conn. 185, 198-199 (1993); State v. Sherbacow, 21 Conn. App. 474, 479-80, cert. denied, 216 Conn. 808 (1990); State v. Sesler, 33 Conn. Sup. 747, 751, cert. denied, 172 Conn. 702 (1976). Even if the evidence below was in conflict, there was evidence presented to support the commissioner’s findings and his ultimate conclusion.

We, therefore, affirm the trial commissioner and deny the appeal.

Additionally, pursuant to Sec. 31-301c(b), we grant interest at the rate permitted by the statute on any amount remaining unpaid during the pending appeal.

Commissioners Angelo L. dos Santos and Donald H. Doyle, Jr, concur.

Workers’ Compensation Commission

Page last revised: January 28, 2016

Page URL: http://wcc.state.ct.us/crb/1993/1327crb.htm

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State of Connecticut Workers' Compensation Commission, John A. Mastropietro, Chairman
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