Avramovic v. R.C. Moore Transportation, Inc.

954 A.2d 449 (2008)

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Avramovic v. R.C. Moore Transportation, Inc.

Maine Supreme Judicial Court
954 A.2d 449 (2008)

Facts

In October and November 2003, Dragoslav Avramovic (plaintiff) was employed by R. C. Moore Transportation, Inc. (R. C. Moore) (defendant) as a truck driver when he suffered two back injuries. The injuries required surgery. In February 2004, Avramovic went back to work with restrictions, until he stopped working in March 2004. In July 2005, Avramovic was offered a part-time accounting job by R. C. Moore, requiring 30 hours per week. Because Avramovic’s physician restricted his work to 20 hours per week, he declined the offer. Avramovic was terminated in July 2006. Avramovic applied to 300 jobs and had 13 personal interviews, mostly for financial positions. He applied to about 50 jobs outside of finance. Expediter Corporation helped Avramovic in his search for employment, and he was offered a telephonic position with Information Direct, Inc. (IDI). Avramovic declined the offer. Avramovic filed a petition seeking total-incapacity benefits or 100 percent partial-incapacity benefits. The Workers’ Compensation Board hearing officer found that Avramovic suffered a single injury and could work 20 hours per week. The officer found Avramovic conducted a thorough search but did not meet his burden of proving unavailability of work in his local community, because he focused his efforts almost exclusively on financial positions. The officer awarded partial-incapacity benefits, not 100 percent, and found that the IDI offer was not a bona fide offer of employment. Avramovic appealed, arguing he should have been awarded 100 percent partial-incapacity benefits, and that the law was applied incorrectly in analyzing his work search. R. C. Moore cross-appealed, arguing Avramovic was not entitled to benefits, because he refused a bona fide offer of reasonable employment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Alexander, J.)

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