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Ex parte Trusswalk, Inc.

Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

March 29, 2019

EX PARTE TRUSSWALK, INC. (In re: Chesley Shawn Price
v.
Trusswalk, Inc.)

Page 40

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 41

          PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS (Marshall Circuit Court, CV-17-900072). F. Timothy Riley, Judge

         Joseph H. Driver, Donald B. Kirkpatrick, Chase S. Eley, and Stephen D. Palmer of Carr Allison, Birmingham, for petitioner.

         Jay E. Emerson, Jr., of Higgs & Emerson, Huntsville, for respondent.

         OPINION

         MOORE, Judge.

          Trusswalk, Inc. ("the employer"), petitions this court for a writ of mandamus directing the Marshall Circuit Court to vacate its order requiring the employer to refer Chesley Shawn Price ("the employee") to a pain-management specialist for medical treatment. We grant the petition and issue the writ.

          Background

         On February 16, 2018, the employee commenced in the circuit court a civil action against the employer; the employee alleged that he had suffered a lower-back injury in a work-related accident on November 7, 2016, and he sought benefits for that injury under the Alabama Workers’ Compensation Act ("the Act"), Ala. Code 1975, § 25-5-1 et seq. On September 18, 2018, the employee filed a "motion to compel medical treatment" in which he asserted, among other things, that he was suffering from "chronic debilitating pain" in his lower back as a result of the work-related injury, that his authorized treating physician was not treating that pain, and that he had requested and been denied a referral to "pain management." The employee moved the circuit court to order the employer to provide "appropriate medical treatment" for his condition. The employer responded that the motion should be denied because, it asserted, the employee’s authorized treating physician who was responsible for directing the course of the employee’s medical treatment had not referred the employee for pain management.[1]

         The circuit court held a hearing on the motion at which it received medical records and heard oral arguments of counsel.[2] On December 6, 2018, the circuit court entered an order in which it found that the employee was in "chronic moderate severe to severe pain" "due to and on account of his medical condition from the work-related accident and injury" of November 7, 2016, and that the employee "is not receiving necessary treatment for his chronic pain." The circuit court ordered the employer to "immediately refer [the employee] to a [p]ain [m]anagement [s]pecialist for treatment of his chronic pain condition

Page 42

...." The employer filed its petition for a writ of mandamus in this court on December 27, 2018. This court heard oral argument on the ...


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