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Decision Timothy Payton v. Saint Gobain Norton Co.

Date: 12/19/2007
Organization: Department of Industrial Accidents
Docket Number: DIA Board No. 028613-01
Location: Boston
  • Employee: Timothy Payton
  • Employer: Saint Gobain Norton Co.
  • Insurer: Pacific Employers Insurance

McCARTHY, J. The employee appeals from an administrative judge’s decision finding he failed to meet his burden of proving that racially harassing incidents at work were the predominant cause of his emotional disability. See G. L. c. 152, § 1(7A).1 Because we agree with the employee that the judge erred by substituting his opinion on causation for the prima facie medical opinion of the § 11A examiner, we reverse the decision and recommit the case to the administrative judge for a determination of when the employee’s permanent and total incapacity began.

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1  G. L. c. 152, § 1(7A), provides, in relevant part:

Personal injuries shall include mental or emotional disabilities only where the predominant contributing cause of such disability is an event or series of events occurring within any employment. . . . No mental or emotional disability arising principally out of a bona fide, personnel action including a transfer, promotion, demotion, or termination except such action which is the intentional infliction of emotional harm shall be deemed to be a personal injury within the meaning of this chapter.