Employee’s misrepresentation on pre-employment application does not preclude Workers’ Compensation – Nebraska
In a reversal of a 1979 state Supreme Court decision, Hilt Truck Lines Inc. vs. Rajean Jones, the Nebraska Supreme Court found that Workers’ Compensation benefits can’t be denied to a former hospital employee who did not disclose prior work injuries in a pre-employment screening. In a pre-employment questionnaire, the injured worker did not disclose a work-related back injury suffered in 2001, although she did disclose one incurred in 2000. She injured her back again 2008 and applied for Workers’ Compensation benefits, which were denied.
Upon appeal, the Nebraska Supreme Court said the state’s Workers’ Comp law contained a provision for not paying benefits because of an employee’s willful negligence. But in this case, the injured was not an employee, but an applicant, when she filled out the pre-existing injury information.
The Nebraska Supreme Court called its 1979 decision that linked nonpayment to what was listed on an application “erroneous.” The Supreme Court sent the case back to the review panel to determine whether the employee should get comp benefits without regard to any misrepresentation she may have made on her employment application.
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