Hood v. Maine Department of Corrections, 012921 MEWC, 21-5

Docket Nº:Decision 21-5
Case Date:January 29, 2021
Court:Maine
NED E. HOOD (Appellant)
v.
MAINE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS (Appellee)
and
STATE OF MAINE WORKERS’ COMPENSATION DIVISION (Insurer)
Decision No. 21-5
No. A.D. 18-0018
Maine Workers Compensation Decisions
State of Maine Workers’ Compensation Board
January 29, 2021
          Argued: December 13, 2018.           Attorney for Appellant: Benjamin K. Grant, Esq., McTEAGUE HIGBEE           Attorneys for Appellee: Anne-Marie Storey, Esq., John K. Hamer, Esq., RUDMAN & WINCHELL.           PANEL MEMBERS: Administrative Law Judges Pelletier, Hirtle, and Stovall.           Pelletier, Administrative Law Judge.          [¶1] Ned Hood appeals from a decision of a Workers’ Compensation Board administrative law judge (Elwin, ALJ), issued after a remand from the Appellate Division, denying his Petition for Payment of Medical and Related Services and granting his Petition for Award in part. Mr. Hood contends that even after remand, the ALJ’s findings are not supported by competent evidence and that the ALJ’s application of the law to the facts is arbitrary or without rational foundation. Additionally, Mr. Hood argues that the record compels a finding of ongoing causation from the date of the injury to the present. We disagree and affirm the ALJ’s decision.          I. BACKGROUND          [¶2] In 2016, Mr. Hood appealed from an ALJ decision dated November 17, 2016. The Appellate Division affirmed that decision in part and remanded in part for further findings of fact and conclusions of law on the sole issue of whether the record contained clear and convincing evidence contrary to the medical findings of an independent medical examiner (IME), appointed pursuant to 39-A M.R.S.A. § 312 (Pamph. 2020). The IME had opined that the effects of Mr. Hood’s compensable respiratory injury had ended by September 23, 2009. See Hood v. Maine Dep’t of Corr., Me. W.C.B. No. 18-5 (App. Div. 2018).          [¶3] The Appellate Division’s mandate included a direction that the ALJ issue additional findings addressing the IME’s specific expertise with toxic exposure cases when compared to other expert medical opinions in the case...

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