XYZZX SJO2 Commutation Released (California) (California)

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XYZZX SJO2 Commutation Released (California) (California)

Postby davidd on Sun Apr 26, 2009 6:03 am

WorkCompCentral has released an updated version of its life pension/total permanent disability commutation calculator to provide data consistent with the recent WCAB panel opinion in XYZZX SJO2.

"While the panel opinion in XYZZX SJO2 is not citable, nor controlling law, we felt that the result was so significant that parties to litigation should be aware of the potential to claim value should this case, or its progeny, become controlling law," said David DePaolo, president of WorkCompCentral.

The panel in XYZZX SJO2 ruled that application of the state average weekly wage increase per Labor Code Section 4453 to life pensions starts the Jan. 1 following the date of injury, as opposed to the Jan. 1 following the start of the life pension (which in a 70% permanent disability case would be at least 433.25 weeks, or 8.33 years, after the start of permanent disability payments).

Commissioner Alfonso Moresi wrote in the decision: "In some cases there may be years of litigation before there is a determination that an employee is entitled to receive a life pension or a total permanent disability indemnity award. In the case of a life pension, the first payment will ordinarily be made years after the date of injury. Nonetheless, the injured worker will have been protected against any inflation that may have ensued between the date of injury and the date of first payment of the life pension or total permanent disability indemnity."

The difference can be hundreds of thousands of dollars in a lump-sum settlement situation, such as a compromise and release or commutation of attorney fees, said DePaolo.

Subscribers to WorkCompCentral can use the calculator, after logging in, by clicking on "Commutation PTD - Life Pension" in the Calculators section. Subscribers may read the XYZZX SJO2 opinion after conducting a WorkCompCentral search for XYZZX in either the News or WCAB Panel Opinions results.
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