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Pulcinella v. Prudential Insurance Company

CASE NO. 1236 CRD-6-91-5

COMPENSATION REVIEW BOARD/DIVISION

WORKERS’ COMPENSATION COMMISSION

JANUARY 11, 1993

FRANCES PULCINELLA

CLAIMANT-APPELLANT

v.

PRUDENTIAL INSURANCE COMPANY

EMPLOYER

and

TRAVELERS INSURANCE COMPANY

INSURER

RESPONDENTS-APPELLEES

APPEARANCES:

The claimant was represented by Brian T. Mahon, Esq. and A. Elaine Rogers Parsons, Esq., Weigand, Mahon, and Adelman, P.O. Box 2420, 636 Broad Street, Meriden, CT 06450.

The respondents were represented by Amado J. Vargas, Esq., and Christine Harrigan, Esq., Law Offices of Robert S. Cullen, P.O. Box 9802, New Haven, CT 06536-8877.

This Petition for Review from the May 14, 1991 Finding and Award of the Commissioner for the Sixth District was heard April 24, 1992 before a Compensation Review Division panel consisting of the then Commission Chairman, John Arcudi and Commissioners Robin Waller and Angelo dos Santos.

OPINION

JOHN ARCUDI, COMMISSIONER. Claimant’s appeal seeks to reverse a Sixth District ruling approving the employer’s Form 36 permitting the employer to discontinue temporary total disability benefits under Sec. 31-296. Claimant had sustained a compensable injury to her neck and lower back on April 19, 1983. Except for a short number of weeks when she attempted to return to work, she received temporary total disability benefits from the date of the injury until her Formal Hearing in May, 1990.

The respondent employer filed a Form 36 September 15, 1989 seeking to discontinue total disability benefits as there was medical evidence that she was not totally disabled. In opposing discontinuance, claimant cited the medical opinion of her treating psychiatrist, Dr. Earl Patterson, M.D., who testified that claimant was totally disabled due to chronic pain syndrome.

There was considerable other evidence before the commissioner that claimant had some work capacity. The respondent presented the opinions of the psychiatrist, Dr. Walter Borden, M.D., the orthopedist, Dr. Myron Shafer, M.D., and the physical medicine specialist, Dr. Philip Arnold, M.D., all concluding claimant was not totally disabled from work.

In cases such as this where medical testimony is in conflict, as long as there is evidence to support it, the trier’s conclusion must stand. We can only disturb his conclusions when they are without evidence, contrary to law or based on impermissible or unreasonable factual references. Fair v. People’s Savings Bank, 207 Conn. 535 (1988), Rivera v. Guida’s Dairy, 167 Conn. 524, (1975); Wheat v. Red Star Express Lines, 156 Conn. 245 (1968). As stated in Carmelo Deleon v. Dunkin Donuts, 10 Conn. Workers’ Comp. Rev. Op. 39, 42 1113 CRD-3-90-9 (1992), “[This tribunal’s] review is not a de novo review. While we may have reached an entirely different conclusion as to the issues raised... the conclusions reached are supported by the evidence and not contrary to law....”

Therefore, we affirm the Sixth District May 14, 1991 Finding and Award and dismiss claimant’s appeal.

Commissioners Angelo dos Santos and Robin Waller concur.

Workers’ Compensation Commission

Page last revised: April 20, 2018

Page URL: http://wcc.state.ct.us/crb/1993/1236crb.htm

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State of Connecticut Workers' Compensation Commission, Stephen M. Morelli, Chairman
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