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Involvement in meth lab operations not work: Court

Posted On: May. 31, 2019 12:46 PM CST


The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York on Thursday ruled that insurers must continue to pay indemnity benefits to an injured worker who had been incarcerated for involvement in the production of methamphetamine.

The latest ruling in Robert Stone v. Saulsbury/Federal Signa et al., filed in the appellate court’s third division in Albany, affirmed the Workers’ Compensation Board’s finding that the man who had been collecting indemnity benefits over a compensable injury prior to his conviction and incarceration did not violate state workers compensation laws when he became involved in the production of illegal drugs.

“We are unpersuaded by the carrier's contention that claimant's criminal conduct constitutes work for purposes of Workers' Compensation Law,” the ruling states. “The elements of the crime do not require that any work be performed. Substantial evidence supports the Board's finding that the conviction alone is insufficient to establish any work activity by claimant or that he received any type of remuneration.”

The insurers and attorneys involved could not immediately be reached for comment.