Lien claimants have the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence and may be sanctioned for frivolous actions

This is an EN BANC decision of the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB)

This is a very significant case for workers’ compensation principles.

The applicant suffered compensable injuries to his spine and lower extremities in 2002 and 2003. The defendant settled the case by compromise and release in 2005.

In 2009 the lien claimant filed a notice of appearance. In 2010 lien claimant filed an original lien claim. In 2011 at a lien conference the lien claimant listed as its exhibits a health insurance claim form and two MRI reports.

At the trial the parties stipulated that applicant “claimed” injuries. No witnesses testified. Lien claimant submitted an insurance form that listed dates of service, procedure codes and treatment charges. The Workers’ Compensation Judge (WCJ) found lien claimant failed to carry its burden of proof and issued a take nothing.

On appeal the WCAB reviewed prior cases and Labor Code Sections 3202.5 and 5705. They determined the lien claimant must prove by a preponderance of the evidence the validity of their lien. If not they may be sanctioned under Labor Code Section 5813.

Case: Torres v AJC Sandblasting

Harvey Brown
3501 Jamboree Rd. Suite 602
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Newsletter Sign up

Workers Compensation Feed

Recent Newsletters