A worker who said she injured her fingers just hours into her first day of work and was then sued for negligence is barred from pursuing her claim by the exclusive measure in the Louisiana Workers' Compensation Act.
In Bourque v Tony Chachere & # 39; s Creole Foods of Opelousas Inc ., Louisiana Court of Appeals, the third district of Lake Charles on Wednesday overturned a district court decision allowing the worker to proceed and dismissed her claim. .
Crystal Bourque had been hired by FC Staffing Inc. to work in Tony Chacher's Creole Foods warehouse. On her first day of work, less than two hours after the shift, she claimed she injured her hand when the leg of a plastic table was closed on top of her fingers. She sought medical attention and claimed that her supervisor had made inappropriate comments to her. However, she completed her shift and work week. The following week, she called several times to request a modified duty, and then applied for and received workers' disability compensation based on the alleged hand injury.
She also filed a lawsuit against Tony Chachere & # 39 ;s Creole Foods, claiming that the company was negligent. and responsible for the actions of her supervisor. The company advocated a summary judgment, claiming that it was protected from liability by the provisions of the Workers' Compensation Act. among other issues. Creole Foods appealed and the Court of Appeal reversed the decision of the Court of Justice and dismissed the case.
The court found that Creole Foods presented sufficient evidence that Bourque was a loan employee under state statutes and noted that it had staffing agreements with FC Bemanning where it controlled the work, set schedules, set hours, provided equipment and had the right to dismiss workers. . Although Mrs Bourque claimed that she had not "accepted" the job required by the statue to find a loaned employment status, the court did not agree and noted that she participated in a briefing at Creole Foods, knew that the facility would be her assignment and did not ask FC Staffing to place her elsewhere.