12-0008. JOSEPH S. LOTT v. EXCEL GYMNASTICS Uninsured and THE ALASKA WORKERS' COMPENSATION BENEFITS GUARANTY FUND Defendants.

Court:Alaska
 
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Alaska Workers Compensation Decisions 2012. Workers' Compensation Board 12-0008. JOSEPH S. LOTT v. EXCEL GYMNASTICS Uninsured and THE ALASKA WORKERS' COMPENSATION BENEFITS GUARANTY FUND Defendants Alaska Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission JOSEPH S. LOTT, Applicant, v. EXCEL GYMNASTICS, Uninsured, and THE ALASKA WORKERS' COMPENSATION BENEFITS GUARANTY FUND, Defendants.AWCB Decision No. 12-0008 Filed with AWCB Anchorage, Alaska on January 11, 2012AWCB Case No. 201012662INTERLOCUTORY DECISION AND ORDER Excel Gymnastics' (Excel) January 6, 2012 Emergency Petition for a Continuance was heard on the written record on January 10, 2012, in Anchorage, Alaska. Attorney Rene Gonzales represented Joseph Lott (Applicant). Attorney Burt Mason represented Excel, which was not insured for work-related injuries at the time of the injury giving rise to this claim. The record closed at the hearing's conclusion on January 10, 2012. ISSUE Excel contends its attorney has been seriously ill since December 11, 2011. It contends it cannot prepare properly for hearing as its representative has not had the stamina to perform the work needed to adequately defend against Applicant's claim. It seeks a continuance. Applicant and the Alaska Workers' Compensation Benefits Guaranty Fund (Fund) both submitted non-oppositions to Excel's petition. They have no objection to a continuance under these circumstances. Should the January 24, 2012 hearing be continued because of Excel's counsel's illness? FINDINGS OF FACT Evaluation of the hearing record as a whole establishes the following relevant facts and factual conclusions by a preponderance of the evidence: (1) On September 2, 2010, Applicant filed a claim against Excel for benefits under the Alaska Workers' Compensation Act (Claim, September 1, 2010). (2) As an alleged employer and a defendant to this claim, Excel is a party to this matter (observation). (3) On July 7, 2011, Applicant filed an Affidavit of Readiness for Hearing (Affidavit of Readiness for Hearing, July 6, 2011). (4) On September 8, 2011, the parties appeared at a prehearing conference and stipulated to an oral hearing on January 24, 2012 (Prehearing Conference Summary, September 8, 2011). (5) On January 6, 2012, Excel filed by facsimile an "emergency" petition requesting a continuance of the January 24, 2012 hearing. Excel attached an affidavit of...

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