CCMPT wins appeal on behalf of California Major League Baseball Club, San Francisco Giants in a landmark holding finding there is no subject matter jurisdiction over former player’s cumulative trauma injury claim
The applicant in this matter was a Minor League baseball player who played exclusively for out-of-state minor league affiliates of the California-based MLB baseball club, San Francisco Giants. This matter proceeded to trial on the bifurcated issue of whether the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board had subject matter jurisdiction over Applicant’s cumulative trauma injuries alleged against the Giants. At trial, Defendant elicited favorable testimony that applicant was not hired in California, and never performed any of his job duties in California. The Trial Judge found subject matter jurisdiction over the claim based on the premise that the Giants had direction and control over Applicant’s job duties.
Attorney Bridget Harrison successfully argued on appeal the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board lacked subject matter jurisdiction over applicant’s cumulative trauma injury claim because applicant failed to point to any statutory authorization to bring his claim in the state of California, and failed to establish evidence that applicant met the requirements of Labor Code Section 5300, 5301, 5305, and/or 3600.5(a). Attorney Harrison successfully argued that the mere fact that the Giants were a California employer was insufficient to bring applicant’s injury claim in California.
The Workers’ Compensations Appeals Board issued their Opinion and Decision After Reconsideration in Defendant’s favor on April 29, 2020, finding there was no subject matter jurisdiction over Applicant’s claim pursuant to the arguments made in Defendant’s Petition for Reconsideration. Being newly aggrieved, Applicant filed a Petition for Reconsideration of the April 29, 2020 decision. After receiving Applicant’s Petition for Reconsideration, and Attorney Harrison’s Answer to same, the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board filed their Opinion and Order Denying Applicant’s Petition for Reconsideration on September 14, 2020, finding Applicant once again failed to point to a statute authorizing subject matter jurisdiction over Applicant’s cumulative trauma injury claim. This Opinion has now been published on LexisNexis under 2020 Cal. Wrk. Comp. P.D. Lexis 292.
Decision: Click here.
UPDATE: Following the WCAB decision on September 14, 2020 finding there is no subject matter jurisdiction over Farley’s California Workers’ Compensation claim, Applicant’s counsel filed a Petition for Writ of Review with the Fourth District California Court of Appeal requesting review and annulment of the WCAB decision. Attorney Harrison vehemently opposed Applicant’s Petition to the Court of Appeal. On December 2, 2020, the Court of Appeal denied Applicant’s Petition, upholding the WCAB decision there is no subject matter jurisdiction over Farley’s claim and therefore Farley could not proceed with his claim against the San Francisco Giants in California.