Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board in case of George F. Campbell v. M. Glosser & Sons, No. A-82035.
Stephen L. Dugas, Glass, Glass & Dugas, for petitioner.
Eugene F. Scanlon, Jr., for respondents.
Judges Williams, Jr., Craig and Blatt, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Blatt.
[ 80 Pa. Commw. Page 149]
George F. Campbell (claimant) appeals here an order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) reversing a referee's award of benefits pursuant to Section 306(c)(22) of The Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act (Act), Act of June 2, 1915, P.L. 736, as amended, 77 P.S. § 513(22) (serious and permanent disfigurement of the head, neck and face).
The facts in this case are not in dispute. While employed at M. Glosser & Sons (employer), the claimant suffered an injury to his right eye when it was struck by the end of a coil of wire. As a result of this injury, he received disability benefits for 8 3/7 weeks after which time he executed a Final Receipt stating that he had returned to his former employment without a loss of earnings. He then filed a second claim petition, however, in which he sought benefits under Section 306(c)(22) of the Act, 77 P.S. § 513(22) for the permanent disfigurement of his right eye.*fn1
Treating the claimant's petition as one to set aside a Final Receipt, the referee found that the accident had resulted in a permanent and unsightly disfigurement of the pupil of the claimant's right eye and that,
[ 80 Pa. Commw. Page 150]
although the claimant had lost some vision in his right eye, the damage did not yet constitute the loss of his right eye as covered in Section 306(c)(7) of the Act, 77 P.S. § 513(7).*fn2 Compensation benefits, therefore, were awarded under Section 306(c)(22) for an additional period of 25 weeks for the permanent and unsightly disfigurement of the right eye. The order included a proviso which read that, if the claimant were ever successfully to seek benefits for the loss of his right eye under Section 306(c)(7) of the Act, the award for disfigurement would be credited against any further benefits awarded.
The Board held on appeal, as a matter of law, that Section 306(c) provides for compensation for either the loss or disfigurement/scarring of specific portions of the body and that, inasmuch as Section 306(c)(7) specifically awards benefits for the loss of the eye and not for the scarring of the eye, there is no provision in the Act which would allow an award for the disfigurement of the eyeball. The Board also expressed concern that a present award for disfigurement might result in a double recovery for the claimant if he, at some time in the future, collected benefits as well for the loss of his eye. The present appeal followed.
As both parties and the Board have noted, the sole issue before this Court is a question of law. And, of course, our scope of review in a workmen's compensation case includes all questions of law. Section 704 of ...