WORKERS COMPENSATION CASE WATCH
On August 26, 2021, the Supreme Court of Virginia issued an Opinion in City of Charlottesville, et al. v. Sclafani, Record No. 200791 (Va. Aug. 26, 2021), which provides additional guidance regarding the Van Buren “injury by accident” line of cases.
After a series of appeals and remands, the Court of Appeals affirmed the Commission’s determination that Sclafani, a police officer, sustained a compensable injury by accident when he injured his left shoulder during a four-hour afternoon training session.* During that session, the claimant’s activities included being put on the ground and handcuffed, picked up, and moved away.
The Supreme Court disagreed with the reasoning of the Court of Appeals, noting that the Court of Appeals seems to establish a “bright line rule that a four hour time period is sufficiently temporally precise to establish a compensable injury under the Act.”
The Supreme Court found that asserting that an injury occurred over a four hour time period where multiple potential causative events occurred is not enough to establish