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Tennessee Supreme Court Throws Out Applicant's Workers' Compensation Retaliation Claim Against Prospective Employer

Executive Summary: On August 21, 2015, the Tennessee Supreme Court held that a job applicant does not have a cause of action under the Tennessee Workers' Compensation Act (TWCA) against a prospective employer for failure to hire based on the applicant's workers' compensation claim against a previous employer. Yardley v. Hospital Housekeeping Systems, LLC.

Job Applicant Cannot Sue for Failure to Hire under Tennessee Workers’ Compensation Act

Ruling on a question of law from a federal district court, the Tennessee Supreme Court has determined that a job applicant has no cause of action against a prospective employer in Tennessee if the prospective employer failed to hire the job applicant because the applicant had filed, or is likely to file, a workers’ compensation claim against a previous employer. Yardley v. Hospital Housekeeping Systems, LLC, No. M2014-01723-SC-R23-CV (Aug. 21, 2015).

Tennessee Supreme Court Extends Workers' Comp Coverage To Telecommuters.

The state’s highest court recently ruled that the Workers’ Compensation Act covers telecommuters injured while working from home, but only if the injury arises out of and occurs in the course of employment. The Tennessee Supreme Court went on to find that an employee who was attacked by a neighbor in her home office was not entitled to benefits because her injuries did not arise out of her employment. Moreover, according to the court, the “street risk” doctrine did not apply to this case because the employee’s injuries were not causally connected with the nature of the employment. Wait v. Travelers Indemnity Company of Illinois, No. M2007-00099-SC-R3-WC, Supreme Court of Tennessee (November 16, 2007).
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