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Dahl overturned by the Court

The Court of Appeal has overturned the WCAB’s decision and concluded:

In sum, we find WCAB’s approach in this case flies in the face of Ogilvie and the 2004 amendments to the workers’ compensation scheme. Under the 2004 amendments, a claimant’s scheduled rating is presumptively correct. Ogilvie confirmed the Legislature meant what it said, and that claimants may not rebut their disability rating merely by offering an alternative calculation of their diminished future earning capacity. While Ogilvie found the 2004 amendments did not overthrow certain long-held approaches to calculating earning capacity, it clearly did not intend those approaches to be construed so broadly as to return us to the ad-hoc decision making that prevailed prior to 2004. Following the WCAB’s approach in this case would do just that. Claimants could rebut their presumptively correct disability rating merely by presenting an analysis that shows a greater diminished future earning capacity than that determined by applying the Schedule. As Ogilvie makes clear, this approach is no longer permissible.


The decision of the WCAB is annulled. We remand for further proceedings consistent with this decision.

You can find the case here: Contra Costa Co. V WCAB (Dahl)



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