Commission Awards Police Officer 10% Loss of Person as a Whole for SLAP Tear

Franklin v. City of East St. Louis, 06 WC 55274; 07 WC 20812; 16 IWCC 0857

Police officers in uniform

The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission awarded a police officer 10% loss of person as a whole for his SLAP tear and repair in Franklin v. City of East St. Louis, 06 WC 55274; 07 WC 20812; 16 IWCC 0857 IWCC PDF.

The police officer was chasing a suspect when his arm was caught on a wire fence. He immediately sought treatment for a laceration on his upper arm, but did not complain about his shoulder or seek shoulder treatment for several months.

The officer was later diagnosed with a SLAP tear – an injury to the labrum of the shoulder – for which he underwent surgical repair.

The arbitrator denied the SLAP tear claim on the basis of no causation because of the delay in treatment and the officer appealed to the Commission.

The Commission reversed the arbitrator, finding that the officer had no history of shoulder pain before the accident, both the treating physician and the employer’s independent medical examiner found that the description of the mechanism of injury was consistent with a SLAP tear, and that the officer testified credibly.

The officer was awarded 10% loss of person as a whole for the combined the combined SLAP tear and repair and laceration.

Further Reading:

Will County Forest Preserve District v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission, 2012 IL App (3d) 110077WC (finding that shoulder injuries should be compensated as a loss to the person as a whole rather than as a scheduled injury to the arm) Google Scholar.

This article does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney directly.