Willamette Law Online

Oregon Court of Appeals


Blank v. US Bank of Oregon

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 09-26-2012
Case #: A149267
Hadlock, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Sercombe, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A149267.pdf

Workers Compensation: A work related injury is not compensable if it is equally possible that work-related factors or idiopathic factors caused the injury.

Blank sought judicial review of the Workers’ Compensation Board’s (Board) order that her accidental fall at work was not compensable. Blank has Churg-Strauss Syndrome (CSS) which causes numbness in her foot and inner-ear problems that affect her balance. Blank testified that she did not know what caused the fall, and there was no evidence of any work-related factors contributing to her accident. After the fall, Dr. Sean Green (Green) conducted an Independent Medical Evaluation of Blank and testified that Blank’s CSS symptoms could not be ruled out as factors in her fall. The Court found that it was reasonable for the Board to rely on Green’s opinion, and held that Blank had not adequately eliminated the possibility that idiopathic factors contributed to her fall. Affirmed.