Facts

Respondent sustained injuries while working for the Petitioner.  In 1999 the respondent filed the original claim with the Worker’s Compensation Commission.  Then in 2006 through 2009 the respondent filed three new sets of issues under the original claim.

Procedural History

Following the rulings, the respondent filed an appeal to the Circuit Court and the Court of Special Appeals.  The Respondent filed his first claim in 2006, and then appealed the Circuit Court ruling to the Court of Special Appeals.  Then the respondent proceeded to file his second claim in 2008.  The respondent then filed for an appeal to the Court of Special Appeals for the second claim.  While the second claim was pending before the Court of Special Appeals, the Court of Appeals granted certiorari on the first claim.  Then in 2009 the respondent filed a third claim, and also appealed this claim to the Court of Special Appeals.   When the Court of Appeals ruled on the first claim, the Court of Special Appeals then claimed that the two cases were moot.  The Court of Appeals then granted certiorari.

Issue

Will the Worker’s Compensation Commission lose jurisdiction to decide a worker’s additional request for relief when a previous order is being appealed.

Holding/Rationale

The Worker’s Compensation retains jurisdiction to hear new issues while other issues in the same claim are pending on appeal, so long as no evidence was taken or decision made on the new issues in the hearing from which the appeal was taken.

The new issues that were brought up were to be consider independent and distinct from the issues pending on appeal.  Thus the respondent was aloud to bring new issues because they did not conflict with the issues that were being appealed.

The Court also held that there was a difference between the two jurisdictions that are laid out in section 9-742 and 9-736 of the Labor and Employment article of the Maryland Code.  The differences are that under 9-736 jurisdiction is retained only if the matter is independent and distinct form he issues on appeal, while such a condition is not imposed on jurisdiction retained under 9-742.  The Court felt that this would limit the possibility of inconsistent verdicts because it will ensure that the new issues are also not being argued on appeal.

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