Bourgoin v. Central Maine Cabinetry
Maine Employers' Mutual Insurance Company
December 14, 2018
Hand Vocational Rehabilitation Earning Capacity Change in Circumstances
Summary from the Troubh Heisler Attorneys
Mr. Bourgoin badly injured his right hand in 2015 and could not return to his prior job as a cabinetmaker, so he petitioned for employment rehabilitation services under §217. The rehabilitation plan called for CMCM to pay for a two-year training program in radiation technology, to begin in the fall of 2017. At some time before then, however, Mr. Bourgoin found a job at TD Bank paying him more than his pre-injury wage. The appellate decision does not indicate whether Mr. Bourgoin intended to leave the bank in the fall to pursue his prior rehabilitation plan.
CMCM filed a Petition for Review seeking to vacate the rehabilitation order in view of this change of circumstances, but Hearing Officer Dunn denied the petition, and CMCM appealed. The panel affirmed the denial, holding that §217 does not allow parties to seek subsequent review of an order granting rehabilitation services. The panel pointed out that §217 (2) expressly provides that, once the Board makes a “final” determination of the propriety of the employment rehabilitation services, the parties cannot appeal the decision nor change it subsequently, despite a change in circumstances.