Workers Comp Commissioners Jurisdiction to Review Third Party Settlements

The question of whether a commissioner has jurisdiction to determine the award and credits, including third party settlements, made pursuant to our workers' compensation scheme was previously determined in the affirmative by our Supreme Court in Love v. J. P. Stevens & Co., supra, 218 Conn. 46. In Love, our Supreme Court disagreed with the plaintiff's position "that even if an employer is entitled to a credit to the extent of a third party recovery, such credit must be established by the court and not by the workers' compensation commissioner because 31-293 . . . does not expressly permit the workers' compensation commissioner to establish the amount of the credit"; id., 50; and "that it is beyond the authority of the commissioner to make apportionments for future benefits after the third party action is over." Id. The Supreme Court held to the contrary that "the commissioner has the responsibility to calculate the credit for unknown future benefits, and that the act, in general, delegates this responsibility to the commissioner..."Id., 50-51.