Dillingham v. Great Northern Paper

Insurance Company

Sedgwick Claims Management Services

Date Decided

March 13, 2015

Panel Members

Timothy Collier

Elizabeth Elwin

Garry Greene


Board IME


IME§312 Clear and Convincing Evidence Shoulder Rotator cuff

File Size

172 KB


Summary from the Troubh Heisler Attorneys

In the absence of clear and convincing evidence to the contrary, the hearing officer must adopt the IME’s opinion regarding causation.

Dillingham injured his shoulder at work in 1999, and Dr. Graf’s IME found that he had 14% PI, including 5% attributable to the rotator cuff. H.O. Goodnough adopted these IME opinions in granting Dillingham’s Petition for Restoration and Petition to Determine PI.

Great Northern appealed, but the panel upheld the decision, holding that when a hearing officer adopts the IME’s opinion, it can be reversed only if the findings are not supported by any competent evidence or the record discloses no reasonable basis to support the decision. The panel found ample evidence in the record to support Dr. Graf’s finding that the rotator cuff syndrome was causally related to the original 1999 work injury.

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