Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Hamilton v. Pro-Football, Inc.

Court of Appeals of Virginia

February 12, 2019

RAYMOND J. HAMILTON
v.
PRO-FOOTBALL, INC., t/a THE WASHINGTON REDSKINS and GREAT DIVIDE INSURANCE COMPANY [1]

          FROM THE VIRGINIA WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMISSION

          Benjamin T. Boscolo (Chasen Boscolo, on brief), for appellant.

          Benjamin J. Trichilo (Eric J. Berghold; McCandlish Lillard, P.C., on brief), for appellees.

          Present: Chief Judge Decker, [*] Judge Malveaux and Senior Judge Haley Argued by teleconference

          OPINION

          MARLA GRAFF DECKER CHIEF JUDGE

         Raymond J. Hamilton (the claimant) appeals a decision of the Workers' Compensation Commission denying his claim for wage loss benefits for an injury that he sustained while on the practice squad of Pro-Football, Inc. (the employer), trading as the Washington Redskins. He contends that the Commission erroneously found that he failed to market his residual capacity and unfairly punished him for attempting to return to playing professional football after his injury instead of immediately seeking other employment. We hold that the evidence supports the Commission's decision. Consequently, we affirm the denial of benefits.

         I. BACKGROUND[2]

         The claimant sustained a compensable injury by accident on December 18, 2015, while working for the employer. He returned to work in a different field on October 3, 2016. He sought temporary total disability benefits for the period of December 18, 2015, through October 2, 2016.

         The evidence introduced at the hearing before the deputy commissioner establishes that the claimant fractured a bone in his right foot on December 18, 2015, while he was serving as a player on the practice squad of the employer's football team. The injury rendered him unable to play football.

         As a result of the injury, the claimant had two surgeries on his foot.[3] He also underwent rehabilitation at several locations during the nine months following the injury. The claimant initially had rehabilitation at the employer's training facility five to six days per week until mid-January 2016, when his practice squad contract expired. He then underwent rehabilitation with the employer's staff two to three days a week for the last two weeks of January. No evidence in the record indicates the length of these sessions.

         Beginning in February 2016, the claimant engaged in rehabilitation in Iowa, Michigan, and Texas.[4] While in Texas, the claimant underwent rehabilitation three days a week for one to two hours per day. Nothing in the record documents the frequency or duration of the claimant's rehabilitation sessions while in Iowa or Michigan. In mid-August 2016, the claimant began formal rehabilitation in Virginia. The physical therapy plan recommended rehabilitation two to three times a week for twelve weeks. The record reflects that the claimant participated in the lesser number of zero to two sessions per week, with each session lasting one hour, for six weeks in August and September 2016.

         In mid-September 2016, Dr. Robert Anderson "noted complete healing" at the site of the claimant's second surgery and authorized him to "increase . . . activity in regard to" his fracture.[5]Following that visit, the claimant continued physical therapy in Virginia through the end of September 2016.

         On October 3, 2016, the claimant began working as a sales representative for Derby Products and Services, a Florida company that distributes chemicals for automotive maintenance, which was operated by the family of a former teammate.

         The claimant submitted a claim to the Commission for wage loss benefits for the period between his injury on December 18, 2015, and the date on which he began working for Derby Products. In defending against the claim for benefits, the employer argued in part that the claimant failed to prove that he marketed his residual work capacity.

         At the hearing before the deputy commissioner, the parties introduced evidence pertaining to the claimant's education, football career, and attempts to obtain employment during his period of partial disability. That evidence established that the claimant graduated from the University of Iowa in 2015 with a bachelor's degree in communications and a certificate in entrepreneurship. While a student there, he played for the university's football ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.