Nov 082018
 

By Gerald

While reviewing case law I came across a decision by the Alberta Court of Appeal which I had to read several times. I always thought that when a worker filed a claim that WCB was the unbiased neutral party.  Apparently this is not so as explained in a decision by the Alberta Court of Appeal. Click on the following link and scroll down to paragraph 83 https://www.canlii.org/en/ab/abca/doc/2005/2005abca276/2005abca276.html?searchUrlHash=AAAAAQAGZGF2aWNrAAAAAAE&resultIndex=3

According to the court it is stated that;  As to the third and fourth factors, it should be noted that Klemke has a more limited interest in this process than the WCB or Mr. Davick. Here, the ultimate dispute is between the worker and the WCB, as any awarded benefits are paid from WCB coffers. The employer has an indirect financial interest only, through a possible increase in WCB premiums.

It would be fair to conclude that when a worker files a claim that WCB takes on the role of the defendant representing the employer who has only an indirect role in the claim and any dispute is between the worker and WCB This being the case, how then would this not give a reasonable apprehension of bias if the dispute is between a worker and WCB with no direct interest by the employer. This certainly is some bastardized part of the law which obviously is not a civil legal standard or any other legal standard.