Appeal from the Order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board, in the case of William J. Ulbrich v. Higgins Erectors, No. A-91000.
Paul D. Shafer, Jr., Shafer, Swick, Bailey, Irwin & Stack, for petitioner.
Michael A. Fetzner, with him, Richard E. Bordonaro, Knox, Graham, McLaughlin, Gornall & Sennett, Inc., for respondent.
Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Palladino.
[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 137]
William J. Ulbrich (Petitioner) petitions for review of an order of the Workmen's Compensation Appeal Board (Board) reversing a referee's grant of Petitioner's petition to set aside a final receipt. Section 434 of The Pennsylvania Workmen's Compensation Act (Act), Act of June 2, 1915, P.L. 736, as amended, 77 P.S. § 1001.
[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 138]
Petitioner suffered a work-related injury on August 5, 1982 when he fell from a crane while in the course of his employment with Higgins Erectors (Employer). Petitioner became totally disabled on November 4, 1982, when it was discovered that Petitioner had broken bones in his right arm as a result of the August 5, 1982 injury. N.T. at 9. Petitioner was paid workmen's compensation pursuant to a notice of compensation payable. Petitioner returned to work on June 6, 1983, and signed a final receipt in July of 1983. Although Petitioner had signed a final receipt, Employer continued to pay for Petitioner's treatment with a chiropractor, Dr. Jack V. VanDervort. Subsequently, Employer stopped paying for Petitioner's chiropractic treatments. On April 22, 1985, because Employer had stopped paying his medical bills, Petitioner filed a petition to set aside the final receipt. Following the presentation of evidence and testimony the referee made the following pertinent findings of fact:
FOUR: In support of his petition, the Claimant testified that the injuries he sustained were as a result of a fall of about five feet from a deck. Among the injuries he received were those to his back. He testified that if it were not for the services of his Chiropractor, he would not be able to continue working. Your Referee accepts his testimony as fact.
FIVE: In further support of his petition, the Claimant presented the testimony of Jack VanDervort, D.C. He diagnosed the claimant's condition as sublaxation complex of the cervical, dorsal and lumbar vertebra. He testified that the Claimant's condition developed due to a chronic problem necessitating weekly treatment. He had treated the Claimant for a prior back condition but this condition did not prevent the
[ 117 Pa. Commw. Page 139]
Claimant from working. He further testified that the treatment which he was giving the Claimant was necessary because of his August 5, 1982 fall. Your Referee accepts his testimony as fact.
SEVEN: Your Referee finds that the treatment which the claimant is undergoing is necessary and resulted from ...