Aspen Highlands Skiing Corp. v. Apostolou
Colorado Supreme Court
866 P.2d 1384 (1994)
John Apostolou (plaintiff) worked for Aspen Highlands Skiing Corporation (Highlands) (defendant) as a part-time ski instructor. In January of 1990, Highlands sought ski instructors with cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) qualifications for Highlands’ ski patrol. Part-time ski-patrol members were not paid wages, but they each received a ski-free identification card from Highlands. As an instructor, Apostolou already had a ski-free card, so he negotiated to receive unlimited daily ski passes for his girlfriend. Apostolou would not have agreed to join the ski patrol if Highlands had not agreed to give him the passes. In February of 1990, Apostolou injured his knee while on ski-patrol duty and could not continue working as an instructor or ski-patrol member. Apostolou sought workers’-compensation benefits, but Highlands contested Apostolou’s claim, noting that Colorado’s legislature had recently amended the state workers’-compensation statute to exclude volunteer ski-patrol members from the statutory definition of employees entitled to benefits. Highlands argued that Apostolou was a volunteer and not an employee at the time of his injury because Apostolou was not paid wages for his ski-patrol work. An administrative-law judge (ALJ) concluded that Apostolou was an employee and awarded benefits, and an industrial claim appeals panel and the Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed. Highlands appealed to the Colorado Supreme Court.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Lohr, J.)
Dissent (Vollack, J.)
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