Workers’ Compensation Heart & Hypertension Act Case Settled for $125,000
Claimant was a 60-year-old detective with a local police department. He successfully passed two pre-employment physical examinations that failed to reveal any evidence of hypertension or heart disease. Thereafter, he underwent annual physicals with the town doctor for 21 years and the examination findings were essentially normal. At his annual physical in 2001, the client was advised by the town doctor that he had hypertension (high blood pressure). This was the first time that he had ever been told that he had hypertension. A cardiologist subsequently confirmed this diagnosis, placed him on medication and found that he had a 40% permanent impairment of the heart. An independent doctor found a 30% disability rating. Our firm filed a Notice of Claim (Form 30C) under the Heart & Hypertension Act (C.G.S. Sec. 7-433c) with the town and the Workers’ Compensation Commission within one year of the date that the client was made aware of his hypertension condition, as required by Connecticut law. The town argued that the claim was filed too late because, at three prior exams, the officer’s blood pressure was slightly elevated. The case went to trial and the Commissioner found in favor of our client. The town appealed this decision to the Compensation Review Board and lost. A further appeal was taken by the town to the Appellate Court. While that appeal was pending, Tremont Sheldon P.C. successfully negotiated a partial settlement of the claim for $125,000.