Ludwig v. State ex rel. Wyoming Workers' Safety and Compensation

In Ludwig v. State ex rel. Wyoming Workers' Safety and Compensation, 2004 WY 34, 86 P.3d 875 (Wyo. 2004), the Court considered the question of whether an employee actively sought suitable work within the meaning of 27-14-405(h)(iii) so as to qualify for permanent partial disability benefits. After sustaining a work injury in 1999 and receiving an impairment rating in 2000, Ms. Ludwig applied for a permanent partial disability award. The evidence showed that she contacted six potential employers in 2000, but only submitted four applications, contacted two employers in 2001, but submitted no applications, and contacted six employers in 2002 just days before applying for permanent partial disability, but again submitted no actual job applications. Ms. Ludwig also testified that to the best of her knowledge she signed up with job service but did not contact them on a regular basis. Evidence was also presented that potential alternative positions were available that took into account Ms. Ludwig's limitations. The Court held the hearing examiner's conclusion that Ms. Ludwig failed to prove that she actively sought suitable employment was supported by substantial evidence.