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THORN v. STRAWBRIDGE & CLOTHIER ET AL. (11/11/59)

November 11, 1959

THORN
v.
STRAWBRIDGE & CLOTHIER ET AL., APPELLANTS.



Appeal, No. 366, Oct. T., 1959, from judgment of Court of Common Pleas No. 4 of Philadelphia County, Sept. T., 1958, No. 2535, in case of Anthony O. Thorn v. Strawbridge & Clothier et al. Judgment affirmed.

COUNSEL

Frank R. Ambler, for appellants.

William F. Quinlan, for appellee.

Before Rhodes, P.j., Hirt, Wright, Woodside, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ. (gunther, J., absent).

Author: Woodside

[ 191 Pa. Super. Page 60]

OPINION BY WOODSIDE, J.

The claimant in this Workmen's Compensation case was injured in a compensable accident on March 9, 1951, and filed no claim petition until June 9, 1953. The question is whether his petition should be dismissed for having been tardily filed.

While employed as a carpenter for Strawbridge & Clothier, in Philadelphia, the claimant was unloading fixtures from an elevator when its door closed, striking him across the shoulder and elbow. He obtained immediate medical attention, and lost three days employment.

[ 191 Pa. Super. Page 61]

When he returned to work, he was suffering continuous pain, and he could not raise his arm or close his fingers. His physical condition did not improve, but he continued his employment until July 9, 1952. By that time his physical condition had deteriorated to the place where he required hospital treatment. Since then he has been totally disabled. Most of his medical bills were paid, but he received no workmen's compensation payments. He filed a claim petition on June 9, 1953.

The referee found in his favor and awarded compensation. Upon appeal to the board, the case was remanded to the referee to make findings on whether the claimant was barred for tardy filing of his claim. After taking additional evidence, the referee found that the claimant "was lulled into a sense of security that his claim would be taken care of and for that reason did not file the claim petition within the statutory period," and again awarded compensation. Upon appeal to the board, it affirmed the referee's findings, conclusions and award. The court below affirmed the board.

Section 315 of the Workmen's Compensation Act of June 2, 1915, P.L. 736, as amended, 77 PS ยง 602, when applicable to this case, provided:*fn1 "In cases of personal injury all claims for compensation shall be forever barred, unless, within one year after the accident, the parties shall have agreed upon the compensation payable under this article; or unless, within one year after the accident, one of the parties shall have filed a petition as provided in article four hereof."

The legislature made the filing of the claim petition within the specified time an express condition of the right to obtain an ...


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