Bell v. Vecellio & Grogan, Inc

In Bell v. Vecellio & Grogan, Inc., 197 W. Va. 138, 475 S.E.2d 138 (1996), the Court was asked to examine a conflicts of law question where an employee of a West Virginia employer alleged that he had been deliberately and intentionally injured by his employer in Maryland. In Bell, the Court ruled that a deliberate intention cause of action is a right held by each employee subject to the West Virginia Workers' Compensation Act. The Court concluded that the Legislature's enactment of W.Va. Code, 23-4-2 "represents the wholesale abandonment of the common law tort concept of a deliberate intention cause of action by an employee against an employer, to be replaced by a statutory direct cause of action by an employee against an employer expressed within the workers' compensation system." Syllabus Point 2, Bell. The Court subsequently held that the employee, who was subject to West Virginia's workers' compensation laws, could pursue his action under West Virginia law.