Schutz v. SAIF Corp.

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Workers Compensation
  • Date Filed: 11-15-2012
  • Case #: A148840
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Hadlock, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Sercombe, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Under ORS 656.005(7)(a), even if an employee's primary motive for engaging in any social activities outside of the work environment was work related, the employee's choices to drink enough to be intoxicated and then drive home are not work related and thus any injury sustained did not arise from employment. Therefore, workers compensation will not be available for an injured worker in this situation.

Schutz appealed a denial of her workers' compensation claim by the Workers' Compensation Board (Board). Schutz was severely injured after getting into an accident while driving home from a restaurant intoxicated. Schutz claimed that she only went to the bar at the request of her supervisor, and therefore the accident was "work related." The Board held that the accident did not "arise" out of her employment, based on ORS 656.005(7)(a), and the Court of Appeals agreed. The Court held that even if her primary motive for going to the restaurant was work related, her intoxication and injuries that resulted did not arise from her employment. Thus, since ORS 656.005(7)(a) requires that an injury be compensable, one prong of the two-prong test was not met and the claim must fail. Affirmed.

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