CHICAGO – Neal Strom of Strom & Associates, recently prosecuted a workers’ compensation claim regarding the consumption of alcohol at a company-sponsored activity. On June 7, 1999, while participating in a business-related golf outing, John Mizwicki fell from a golf cart and suffered a fatal head injury.
Mizwicki’s employer, Tube City, claimed that Mizwicki’s death was not related to his employment obligations because he had consumed several alcoholic beverages before the accident.
Neal Strom summarizes his case, “Mizwicki was not present at Tuckaway Golf Course for any non-business purpose and was acting in a reasonable and foreseeable manner, and the issue of alcohol is of no importance to his claim.”
John Mizwicki was hired by Tube City as site manager of Acme Steel. His job description states that he was to entertain and socialize with Acme employees in order to forge a close business relationships between the companies. Just as he had done many times before, Mizwicki would include the cost of alcohol along with other entertainment expenses when billing Tube City.
Strom brought key experts who testified on Mizwicki’s behalf. Mizwicki’s golf partners reiterated there were no signs of intoxication and an expert doctor’s testimony stated, “the limited number of beers Mr. Mizwicki consumed (three to four over the course of the evening) might well result in no impairment whatsoever.”
Alcohol-related injuries have been long-disputed in Illinois workers’ compensation cases. With a victory in the Mizwicki vs. Tube City case, Neal Strom was able to set a precedent making employers responsible for the environment in which their employee’s work, regardless of where it is located or what activities took place.
ABOUT STROM & ASSOCIATES The Chicago law firm of Strom & Associates represents individuals injured in a work environment who are seeking to enforce their rights under workers’ compensation laws. The firm also represents the victims of personal injury. The law firm combines over 50 years of experience working in personal injury and workers’ compensation. For more information, visit www.stromandassociates.com.
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