Duff Hotel Co. v. Ficara

Decision Date28 April 1942
Citation150 Fla. 442,7 So.2d 790
PartiesDUFF HOTEL CO. et al. v. FICARA et al.
CourtFlorida Supreme Court

Appeal from Circuit Court, Dade County; George E. Holt judge.

McKay Dixon & DeJarnette, of Miami, for appellants.

O. B White and Walter Kehoe, all of Miami, for appellee Michael Ficara.

Walter Rountree, of Tallahassee, for appellee Florida Industrial Commission.

TERRELL, Justice.

In November, 1940 while in the employment of Duff Hotel Company, Michael Ficara sustained an inguinal hernia. His employer feeling that his injury was not covered by the Workmen's Compensation Act, Acts 1935, c. 17481, declined to pay compensation or medical expenses. The Deputy Industrial Commissioner held that he was entitled to four weeks' compensation and his hospital and doctors' bills incurred in repairing the hernia. This finding was affirmed by the Florida Industrial Commission and its judgment was in turn affirmed by the circuit court on appeal. This appeal is from the latter judgment.

The question presented is whether or not Ficara's injury was such as entitled him to compensation under the Workmen's Compensation Act of Florida.

It is admitted that Ficara was acting within the scope of his employment, that his injury resulted from lifting a heavy pot of meat, that he had lifted the pot before and that lifting it was in the line of his duty. Appellant contends that since Ficara did not slip or fall or experience anything unusual in the way of an untoward accident in lifting the pot of meat, he is not within the protection of the Workmen's Compensation Act.

The applicable provision of the Workmen's Compensation Act is Section 15(f) as follows:

'Hernia: In all claims for compensation for hernia resulting from injury by an accident arising out of and in the course of his employment it must be definitely proved to the satisfaction of the Commission.

'1. That there was an injury resulting in hernia.

'2. That the hernia appeared suddenly.

'3. That it was accompanied by pain.

'4. That the hernia immediately followed an accident.

'5. That the hernia did not exist prior to the accident for which compensation is claimed.'

The question here turns on the interpretation of what is meant by hernia 'resulting from injury by an accident' or 'immediately followed an accident'. Appellant contends that the Florida Workmen's Compensation Act having been adopted from the Georgia Act, the Georgia decisions construing the latter were also adopted and said decisions hold that a hernia to be compensable must result from an injury by accident, that it (hernia) must immediately follow the accident; in other words, to recover in this case it must be shown that in lifting the pot of meat, Ficara must have slipped or stumbled and have fallen or sustained some other unexpected mishap from which the hernia resulted. Westbrook v. High View, Inc., 42 Ga.App. 834, 157 S.E. 362; and Royal Indemnity Co. v. Beckmann, Ga.App., 17 S.E.2d 910, are relied on to support this contention.

These cases are susceptible of the interpretation placed on them but there were other considerations not present in the instant case and we think it is too literal to be approved as a guide in all cases. Workmen's Compensation is a product of industrialism and proceeds on the theory that economic loss to the individual by injury in line of duty should be borne in part by the...

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23 cases
  • Zundell v. Dade County School Bd.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • December 15, 1992
    ...cause is unknown. See, e.g., Victor Wine, supra; Gray v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 64 So.2d 650 (Fla.1952); Duff Hotel Co. v. Ficara, 150 Fla. 442, 7 So.2d 790 (1942). The majority does not seriously dispute the proposition that claimant suffered an "accident," as thus defined. Likewis......
  • Gray v. Employers Mut. Liability Ins. Co.
    • United States
    • Florida Supreme Court
    • November 14, 1952
    ...his ordinary work in the usual manner, these decisions are hereby modified, and we re-affirm the rule laid down in Duff Hotel Co. v. Ficara, 150 Fla. 442, 7 So.2d 790, that an unexpected injury received in the ordinary performance of a duty in the usual manner is an injury 'by accident' wit......
  • Purity Biscuit Co. v. Industrial Commission
    • United States
    • Utah Supreme Court
    • January 17, 1949
    ... ... McCormick Lumber Co. v. Department of ... Labor , 7 Wash.2d 40, 108 P. 2d 807; Duff Hotel ... Co. v. Ficara , 150 Fla. 442, 7 So.2d 790; ... Hardware Mutual Casualty Co. v ... ...
  • Travelers Indem. Co. v. PCR INC.
    • United States
    • Florida Supreme Court
    • December 9, 2004
    ...events,' but also injuries or damage neither expected nor intended from the standpoint of the insured."); Duff Hotel Co. v. Ficara, 150 Fla. 442, 7 So.2d 790, 792 (1942) ("`Accident' is not a technical legal term with a well bounded meaning. In Workmen's Compensation it has been applied to ......
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