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JONES & LAUGHLIN STEEL CORP. v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (06/05/78)

decided: June 5, 1978.

JONES & LAUGHLIN STEEL CORP., PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, WORKMEN'S COMPENSATION APPEAL BOARD, MIKE GLEMZUA AND COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, RESPONDENTS



Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of Mike Glemzua v. Jones & Laughlin Steel Corp. and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, No. A-72113.

COUNSEL

Raymond F. Keisling, with him Will & Keisling, for appellant.

Sandra S. Christianson, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee, Commonwealth.

Benjamin L. Costello, for appellee, Glemzua.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Rogers and DiSalle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 35 Pa. Commw. Page 611]

Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation (Appellant) appeals the decision of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) awarding benefits to Mike Glemzua (Claimant) for disability caused by coal miner's pneumoconiosis. Claimant worked in the mines in various capacities for 36 years ending on July 5, 1973. On June 25, 1973, he was awarded Federal Black Lung benefits commencing in May of 1972. On January 17, 1975, Claimant was informed by his doctor that he was totally and permanently disabled by pneumoconiosis

[ 35 Pa. Commw. Page 612]

    caused by his cumulative exposure to coal dust in the mines and on February 19, 1975, he applied for benefits concurrently giving notice to Appellant of his disability.

Appellant avers that Claimant failed to give it timely notice of his disability; that the finding that Claimant's disability was caused in part by exposure to occupational hazards after June 30, 1973, was unsupported by the evidence; and that the Board erred in requiring Appellant to pay 50% of the compensation awarded.

We cannot agree and hence affirm the Board's decision.

Appellant's argument that Claimant failed to give timely notice of his disability is based upon the fact that Claimant had commenced Federal Black Lung benefits in May of 1972 and did not give his employer notice of his disability until February of 1975.*fn1 Appellant claims that Claimant should be charged with knowledge of his disability from the time he commenced receiving black lung benefits. Claimant, however, testified that it was not until January 17, 1975, that he was informed that he was totally and permanently disabled by coal ...


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