CHARLES THOMPSON v. ACE AMERICAN INSURANCE CO.
After Thompson, an employee at Brock Maintenance ("Brock"), sought workers’ compensation benefits from Ace for an alleged injury that he sustained at work, Ace denied his claim. Subsequently, on November 7, 2007, a hearing officer at the DWC conducted a contested case hearing to decide the following issues:
1. Did [Thompson] sustain a compensable injury?
2. Does [Thompson] have disability resulting from the claimed injury, and if so, for what periods?
3. What is the date of injury?
The DWC hearing officer issued a decision, finding that Thompson had ―sustained a compensable injury on March 18, 2007‖ and he ―had disability for the period beginning April 3, 2007, and continuing through the date of this hearing and at no other times.‖ The hearing officer’s order contained findings of fact and conclusions of law, including a finding that Thompson had ―sustained damage or harm to the physical structure of his body while in the course and scope of his employment on March 18, 2007‖ and a conclusion that Thompson had ―sustained a compensable injury on March 18, 2007."
Ace appealed the hearing officer’s decision to the DWC Appeals Panel, which upheld the hearing officer’s decision. The notice of the DWC Appeals Panel’s decision listed a date of injury of March 19, 2007.2 Ace then filed the instant suit, seeking review of the DWC Appeals Panel decision in which it found that Thompson had sustained a compensable injury and he had disability beginning on April 3, 2007. In its original petition, Ace asserted that it preserved for appeal all issues presented to the DWC Appeals Panel, including, but not limited to:
(1) "Did [Thompson] sustain a compensable injury?
(2) Did [Thompson] have resulting [disability] from the claimed injury, and if so, for what periods?"
Attached to Ace’s petition was the DWC Appeals Panel notice of its decision in which it stated that the ―Hearing Officer’s decision and Order signed on November 12, 2007 became final‖ on February 21, 2008."