Lindeman-Cibelli v. Maine Medical Center
December 11, 2014
CategoriesBoard IME Board IME Total Incapacity
IME§312 Clear and Convincing Evidence Arm Upper Back Multiple Injuries Total Incapacity
Summary from the Troubh Heisler Attorneys
The hearing officer can accept the finding of one IME doctor, and can reject the contrary findings of another IME doctor, provided clear and convincing evidence to the contrary.
Lindeman-Cibelli injured her arms in 1997 and her upper back in 2000, including mental sequela from both injuries. A 2006 Board decree awarded her total incapacity benefits, and thereafter MMC filed Petitions for Review and PI, claiming changed circumstances. Dr. Barkin’s IME found her had vastly improved, but Dr. Woelflein’s IME found that she had not improved. H.O. Collier adopted Dr. Woelflein’s opinion, discounted Dr. Barkin’s opinion, and denied MMC’s petitions. MMC appealed, but the Appellate Division affirmed the decision, holding that H.O. Collier could reasonably have been persuaded by Ms. Lindeman-Cibelli’s testimony that Dr. Barkin was wrong, and that she remained totally disabled from work even though she engaged in skiing, biking, walking, skating, gardening, stretching, exercising, and volunteering.