Herb's Welding, Inc. v. Gray

470 U.S. 414, 105 S.Ct. 1421, 84 L.Ed.2d 406, 1985 AMC 1700 (1985)

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Herb’s Welding, Inc. v. Gray

United States Supreme Court
470 U.S. 414, 105 S.Ct. 1421, 84 L.Ed.2d 406, 1985 AMC 1700 (1985)

Facts

Robert Gray (plaintiff) was a welder who worked for Herb’s Welding, Inc. (defendant), a company that provided welding services for offshore drilling platforms. Gray worked exclusively as a welder on the platforms, building and repairing pipelines and doing other maintenance work. Gray was working on a gas line on a fixed platform when an explosion occurred, and he injured his knee as he was running away from the area. Gray filed a Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) claim for benefits. The administrative-law judge denied coverage, holding that Gray was not entitled to coverage because his work lacked a significant maritime connection. The Benefits Review Board reversed the decision, holding that Gray was entitled to coverage under the act. Herb’s Welding appealed, and the court of appeals affirmed the decision granting Gray benefits coverage, holding that the nature and location of Gray’s work satisfied the requirements of the act because offshore drilling was itself maritime commerce. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (White, J.)

Dissent (Marshall, J.)

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