92 F.Supp. 898 (N.D.Cal. 1950), 28735, United Engineering Co. v. Pillsbury

Docket Nº:28735, 28810, 29058, 29292.
Citation:92 F.Supp. 898
Party Name:UNITED ENGINEERING CO. et al. v. PILLSBURY, Deputy Commissioner. MATSON TERMINALS, Inc. et al. v. PILLSBURY, Deputy Commissioner. UNITED ENGINEERING CO. et al. v. CYR, Deputy Commissioner.
Case Date:May 10, 1950
Court:United States District Courts, 9th Circuit, Northern District of California
 
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Page 898

92 F.Supp. 898 (N.D.Cal. 1950)

UNITED ENGINEERING CO. et al.

v.

PILLSBURY, Deputy Commissioner.

MATSON TERMINALS, Inc. et al.

v.

PILLSBURY, Deputy Commissioner.

UNITED ENGINEERING CO. et al.

v.

CYR, Deputy Commissioner.

Nos. 28735, 28810, 29058, 29292.

United States District Court, N.D. California, Southern Division.

May 10, 1950

Page 899

John H. Black, Edward R. Kay, San Francisco, Cal., for plaintiffs.

Frank J. Hennessy, U.S. Atty, Edgar R. Bonsall, Asst. U.S. Atty., Macklin Fleming, Asst. U.S. Atty., all of San Francisco, Cal., for defendants.

GOODMAN, District Judge.

In these four consolidated actions, the plaintiff employers and their respective insurance carriers have asked this court to set aside and enjoin the enforcement of Compensation Orders and Awards made by the Deputy Commissioner pursuant to the Longshoremen's and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, 44 Stat. 1424, 33 U.S.C.A. § 901-950. The question presented is whether the Deputy Commissioner lacked jurisdiction to make the awards because the claims for compensation were not filed within a year after the claimants were injured as is allegedly required by Section 13(a) of the Act. The Deputy Commissioner has moved to dismiss the complaints on the ground that the claims were timely filed and that therefore the awards were proper.

Section 13(a) of the Act provides that 'The right to compensation for disability under this chapter shall be barred unless a claim therefore is filed within one year after the injury, and the right to compensation for death shall be barred unless a claim

Page 900

therefore is fil-d within one year after the death, except that if payment of compensation has been made without an award on account of such injury or death a claim may be filed within one year after the date of the last payment. Such claim shall be filed with the deputy commissioner in the compensation district in which such injury or such death occurred.' (Emphasis added.)

For a proper understanding of the issues presented, a brief account of the injuries suffered by the claimants and the events leading up to the compensation awards is here necessary.

Claimant Howard Johnson on May 12, 1947 struck his head on a cross-beam of the vessel Monterey while working as a leaderman welder. The muscles of his neck were severely strained and he was unable to continue to weld aboard ship. His employer transferred him to lighter work in the machine shop at no reduction in wages. Although his neck continued to trouble him, he continued to work regularly for more than a year until he...

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