Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of Frances M. McKeown v. L & A Products and Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, Insurance Carrier, No. A-63150.
Roger B. Wood, with him Joseph R. Thompson, for appellants.
Albert Ring, with him Don F. D'Agui and D'Augi & Del Collo, for appellee.
Judges Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.
This substantively routine workmen's compensation case took, at the last moment, an unusual turn.
The claimant, Frances M. McKeown, contends that she injured her back in the furtherance of the work of her employer, L & A Products, when on June 26, 1967 she either slipped, tripped, stumbled, or lost her balance
causing injury to her back. The employer denied an accident and a referee dismissed the claim petition on the ground of no accident on July 8, 1970. The claimant's appeal was heard by the Workmen's Compensation Board on October 7, 1970.
On December 31, 1971, all of the members of the Workmen's Compensation Board were removed from office by the Governor and three new Commissioners took office on January 3, 1972. In late January 1972 counsel for the parties received written notice from the Board that the case had not been disposed of by the predecessor Board and that they might have reargument. Reargument was conducted on March 22, 1972, and by decision dated July 21, 1972 the Board sustained the claimant's appeal from the referee, found that an accident had occurred and that the claimant was totally disabled.
A timely appeal from the order of July 31, 1972 was taken to this court and our certificate commanding the Board to certify to us "[t]he entire Record as before you they now remain . . ." duly issued. The record certified to us included an opinion and order of the predecessor Board bearing what appears to be the signature of all three of the former Commissioners and, in typing at the end, the notation "11-3-71-Em." This opinion and order affirmed the referee's finding that no accident had occurred and concluded that the unusual pathological result doctrine was not of application because the claimant had a pre-existing back ailment.
The former Board's order was not docketed by the Department of Labor and Industry, no notices thereof were sent to the parties and its existence was unknown to either party until the employer's counsel was asked by his ...