Workers' Compensation: Appeal and Error. Pursuant to Neb.
Rev. Stat. § 48-185 (Cum. Supp. 2016), an appellate
court may modify, reverse, or set aside a decision from the
Workers' Compensation Court only when (1) the
compensation court acted without or in excess of its powers;
(2) the judgment, order, or award was procured by fraud; (3)
there is not sufficient evidence in the record to warrant the
making of the order, judgment, or award; or (4) the findings
of fact by the compensation court do not support the order or
In determining whether to affirm, modify, reverse, or set
aside a judgment of the Workers' Compensation Court, the
findings of fact of the trial judge will not be disturbed on
appeal unless clearly wrong.
__ . An appellate court is obligated in workers'
compensation cases to make its own determinations as to
questions of law.
Workers' Compensation: Evidence: Appeal and Error.
Admission of evidence is within the discretion of the
Workers' Compensation Court, whose determination in this
regard will not be reversed upon appeal absent an abuse of
Workers' Compensation: Rules of Evidence: Due Process.
The Workers' Compensation Court is not bound by the usual
common-law or statutory rules of evidence, but its discretion
to admit evidence is subject to the limits on constitutional
Workers' Compensation. Workers' Comp. Ct. R. of Proc.
42(E) (2015) specifically provides that the parties cannot
attempt to influence or control the meeting place, the
evaluation's outcome, or the vocational rehabilitation
counselor's recommendations, but that the employee can.
Neb.App. 416] 7. __ . Under the odd-lot doctrine, total
disability may be found in the case of workers who, while not
altogether incapacitated for work, are so handicapped that
they will not be employed regularly in any well-known branch
of the labor market. The essence of the test is the probable
dependability with which a claimant can sell his or her
services in a competitive labor market, undistorted by such
factors as business booms, sympathy of a particular employer
or friends, temporary good luck, or the superhuman efforts of
the claimant to rise above his or her crippling handicaps.
Workers' Compensation: Judgments: Appeal and Error.
Whether an employee is totally and permanently disabled is a
question of fact, and when testing the trial judge's
findings of fact, an appellate court considers the evidence
in the light most favorable to the successful party.
Trial: Witnesses. As the trier of fact, the trial judge
determines the credibility of the witnesses and the weight to
give their testimony.
Workers' Compensation: Words and Phrases. Total and
permanent disability contemplates the inability of the worker
to perform any work which he or she has the experience or
capacity to perform.
__ . Total disability does not mean a state of absolute
helplessness. It means that because of an injury, (1) a
worker cannot earn wages in the same kind of work, or work of
a similar nature, that he or she was trained for or
accustomed to perform or (2) the worker cannot earn wages for
any other kind of work which a person of his or her mentality
and attainments could do.
from the Workers' Compensation Court: Laureen K. Van
Norman, Judge. Affirmed.
Patrick J. Mack and Gregory D. Worth, of McAnany, Van Cleave
& Phillips, PA., for appellants.
Franklin E. Miner, of Miner, Scholz & Dike, PC, L.L.O.,
and Pirtle, Judges, and ...