2020 Georgia Code
Title 34 - Labor and Industrial Relations
Chapter 9 - Workers' Compensation
Article 3 - Procedure
Part 2 - Hearing and Appeals
§ 34-9-103. Appeal of Decision; Remand; Reconsideration, Amendment, or Revision of Award

Universal Citation: GA Code § 34-9-103 (2020)
  1. Any party dissatisfied with a decision of an administrative law judge of the trial division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation may appeal that decision to the appellate division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation which shall have original appellate jurisdiction in all workers' compensation cases. An application for review shall be made to the appellate division within 20 days of issuance of notice of the award. The appellee may institute cross appeal by filing notice thereof within 30 days of the notice of the award. If a timely application for review, cross appeal, or both, is made to the appellate division, the appellate division shall review the evidence and shall then make an award with findings of fact and conclusions of law. A copy of the award so made on review shall immediately be sent to the parties and counsel of record at dispute at their addresses of record. Notice to counsel of record of a party shall constitute service of notice to the party, if a copy of the award was sent to the address of record of said party. Upon review, the appellate division may remand to an administrative law judge in the trial division any case before it for the purpose of reconsideration and correction of apparent errors and omissions and issuance of a new award, with or without the taking of additional evidence, or for the purpose of taking additional evidence for consideration by the appellate division in rendering any decision or award in the case. The findings of fact made by the administrative law judge in the trial division shall be accepted by the appellate division where such findings are supported by a preponderance of competent and credible evidence contained within the records.
  2. Within the time limit provided by subsection (a) of this Code section for review by the board of an award made in accordance with Code Section 34-9-102 or within the time limit provided by Code Section 34-9-105 for appeal to a superior court, upon or without the suggestion of a party to the proceedings and notwithstanding the filing of an application for review or appeal, the board or any of its members or administrative law judges issuing an award shall have authority to reconsider, amend, or revise the award to correct apparent errors and omissions. Should an amended or revised award be issued, the time period for filing an application for review of the amended or revised award under subsection (a) of this Code section or for filing appeal to a superior court under Code Section 34-9-105 shall commence upon the date of issuance of the amended or revised award.

(Ga. L. 1920, p. 167, § 58; Ga. L. 1925, p. 282, § 5; Code 1933, § 114-708; Ga. L. 1963, p. 141, § 14; Ga. L. 1975, p. 198, § 10; Ga. L. 1987, p. 806, § 2; Ga. L. 1988, p. 1679, § 19; Ga. L. 1994, p. 887, § 8; Ga. L. 1999, p. 817, § 1; Ga. L. 2009, p. 118, § 2/HB 330.)

Law reviews.

- For article surveying developments in Georgia workers' compensation law from mid-1980 through mid-1981, see 33 Mercer L. Rev. 323 (1981). For annual survey of workers' compensation, see 38 Mercer L. Rev. 431 (1986). For annual survey on workers' compensation, see 61 Mercer L. Rev. 399 (2009).

JUDICIAL DECISIONS

ANALYSIS

  • General Consideration
  • Jurisdiction
  • Procedure
  • Evidence
  • Findings of Fact
  • Correction of Apparent Errors
General Consideration

Board is not a court, but an administrative body which exercises judicial functions within the channels of the workers' compensation law (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1 et seq.). Continental Ins. Co. v. McDaniel, 118 Ga. App. 344, 163 S.E.2d 923 (1968).

Constitutionality.

- Standard of review in O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a) does not unconstitutionally shift any burden of proof to a party who prevailed before the administrative law judge and who did not have a burden of proof before the administrative law judge. Syntec Indus., Inc. v. Godfrey, 269 Ga. App. 170, 496 S.E.2d 905 (1998).

Decision of the board has same force and effect as judgment or decision of any other tribunal. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Webb, 109 Ga. App. 667, 137 S.E.2d 362 (1964).

Administration of the workers' compensation law (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1 et seq.) is vested in the Board of Workers' Compensation, which is expressly empowered to hear and determine claims arising under the law, and, as between the parties, the board's award has the same effect as a judgment rendered by a court of competent jurisdiction. Rourke v. U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co., 187 Ga. 636, 1 S.E.2d 728 (1939).

Board exceeded authority.

- State Board of Workers' Compensation exceeded its rule-making authority, as a matter of law, in creating an unpublished rule of appellate procedure that was inconsistent with O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b). MARTA v. Reid, 282 Ga. App. 877, 640 S.E.2d 300 (2006).

Board's authority broad.

- Superior court did not err in affirming the holding of the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation that the board was procedurally authorized to consider an employee's claim that an employer's notice to controvert was invalid under the Workers' Compensation Act, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-221, because the Act, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), authorized the Appellate Division to remand the employee's claim to the administrative law judge to consider whether the employer's notice to controvert was valid; the statutory authority given to the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation in § 34-9-103(a) is broad. Crossmark, Inc. v. Strickland, 310 Ga. App. 303, 713 S.E.2d 430 (2011).

Deference to findings of fact not properly given.

- Superior court did not give proper deference to the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation's factual findings concerning the purpose of the employee's presence in Augusta on the day the employee was injured as the evidence supported the Appellate Division's finding that the employee was not mandated to be in Augusta on Sunday, when the injury occurred, for any employment related reason, but was present there merely as a personal convenience. The Avrett Plumbing Company v. Castillo, 340 Ga. App. 671, 798 S.E.2d 268 (2017).

This section was applicable only to review by the full board of findings of fact and award of a single director. Ideal Mut. Ins. Co. v. Ray, 94 Ga. App. 785, 96 S.E.2d 377 (1956).

Participation of director making award in review.

- Since former Code 1933, § 114-707 (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103) made it possible for one director to make an award and former Code 1933, § 114-708 (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-105) provided for review thereof by all the directors, it necessarily followed that the proper construction of that section was that all the directors, including the director making the award in the first instance, shall review the award. Wiley v. Bituminous Cas. Co., 76 Ga. App. 862, 47 S.E.2d 652 (1948).

Remedy of appeal for dissatisfaction with award.

- When a hearing is held and an award is made in favor of the claimant, if the claimant is dissatisfied with the amount of the award, claimant's remedy is by way of appeal. When no appeal is taken, the award is conclusive and binding, and in the absence of fraud, accident, or mistake, claimant may not thereafter have the award increased, except upon a change in condition. Rourke v. U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co., 187 Ga. 636, 1 S.E.2d 728 (1939).

Right of either party to appeal.

- When there has been an award by a single commissioner (now administrative law judge), either party may apply for review by the entire board within the time specified, and the fact that the losing party in the hearing before the commissioner (now administrative law judge) makes an appeal to the superior court before the expiration of such trial will not subject such appeal to dismissal. American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Lindsey, 63 Ga. App. 658, 11 S.E.2d 512 (1940).

Appeal to court as waiver of right to appeal to board.

- Appeal to the superior court before the expiration of the seven (now 20) days is a waiver of the right to appeal to the board, but does not otherwise affect the rights of the parties. American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Lindsey, 63 Ga. App. 658, 11 S.E.2d 512 (1940).

Appeal to board as waiver of direct appeal to court.

- Appeal from award of a single director to the full board within 20 days from the date of the award would be a waiver of the right of the appellant to appeal from such award directly to the superior court. Rose City Foods, Inc. v. Usry, 86 Ga. App. 307, 71 S.E.2d 649 (1952).

Finality of award absent appeal.

- Failure to appeal within the time specified makes the award of the single commissioner (now administrative law judge) final. American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Lindsey, 63 Ga. App. 658, 11 S.E.2d 512 (1940).

Res judicata.

- Approved award agreement, not appealed within the time provided by law, is res judicata as to matters determined therein. Jeffares v. Travelers Ins. Co., 138 Ga. App. 903, 228 S.E.2d 1 (1976).

Award of compensation is res judicata until it is changed in the manner prescribed by law. Yates v. Hall, 189 Ga. App. 885, 377 S.E.2d 887, cert. denied, 189 Ga. App. 914, 377 S.E.2d 887 (1989).

Issues waived by failure to appeal to board.

- Failure of the employer to appeal to the full board when all issues of law and fact which might have been asserted on the hearing before the deputy director could have been submitted and tried anew constituted waiver of its right to insist upon notice and opportunity to be heard, and such question could not be insisted upon for the first time on appeal to the superior court. Bailey-Lewis-Williams of Ga., Inc. v. Thomas, 103 Ga. App. 279, 119 S.E.2d 141 (1961).

If a claimant does not seek review by the full board or by the superior court of an issue within the time prescribed, the award becomes final as to that issue, and the claimant will not be entitled to a review by the Court of Appeals of the issue. Bryant v. J.C. Distribs., Inc., 108 Ga. App. 401, 133 S.E.2d 109 (1963).

Withdrawal of appeal without consent of adverse party ineffective.

- When employer and insurance carrier appealed from the award of a single director to the full board within 20 days from the date of the award and hearing on the appeal was set but before a hearing was held, the appeal was withdrawn by the appellants, without the claimant's consent, and another appeal was entered directly to the superior court, the judge of the superior court did not err in dismissing the appeal on motion of the claimant and remanding the case to be heard by the full board on the first appeal, as the attempt to dismiss or withdraw the first appeal without the consent of the adverse party was a nullity. Rose City Foods, Inc. v. Usry, 86 Ga. App. 307, 71 S.E.2d 649 (1952); Atlanta Family Restaurants, Inc. v. Perry, 209 Ga. App. 581, 434 S.E.2d 140 (1993).

Board's hearing on review is a de novo proceeding; it does not sit in the capacity of an appellate court. Complete Auto Transit, Inc. v. Davis, 106 Ga. App. 369, 126 S.E.2d 909 (1962).

Appeal to full board from award of a single director is a de novo proceeding. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952); Ideal Mut. Ins. Co. v. Ray, 92 Ga. App. 273, 88 S.E.2d 428 (1955); Gatrell v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 226 Ga. 688, 177 S.E.2d 77 (1970); National Union Fire Ins. Co. v. Johnston, 122 Ga. App. 332, 177 S.E.2d 125 (1970).

When deputy director is authorized to hear and determine claimant's application for compensation, and from the evidence heard by the director makes findings of fact and on such findings awards compensation to claimant, and employer and its insurance carrier appeal in due time to the board, such appeal opens the entire case for a de novo hearing before the board as a fact-finding body. Pacific Employers Ins. Co. v. West, 213 Ga. 296, 99 S.E.2d 89 (1957).

Mere affirmation not contemplated.

- Award by the board which affirmed the findings of a single director or deputy director is not such an award as was contemplated by this section, but is only an effort to pass on the case as if it had been appealed from a lower to a higher tribunal, and was not a trial de novo. Sweatman v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 96 Ga. App. 243, 99 S.E.2d 548 (1957).

Action only in appellate capacity reversible.

- When it appeared from the award entered that the board acted only in an appellate capacity, without deciding anew the issues raised, such action was illegal and the award would be reversed. American Cas. Co. v. Wilson, 99 Ga. App. 219, 108 S.E.2d 137 (1959).

Standard of review of O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), as amended in 1994, requiring the appellate division to accept findings of fact made by the administrative law judge when such findings are supported by the evidence, was inconsistent with the de novo consideration of all the evidence as applied by the appellate division. Clinical Arts v. Smith, 218 Ga. App. 681, 462 S.E.2d 757 (1995); Truckstops of Am., Inc. v. Engram, 220 Ga. App. 289, 469 S.E.2d 425 (1996).

Even though the 1994 amendment of O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a) became effective after the administrative law judge heard the case and rendered a decision, the appellate division erred by failing to apply the standard of review prescribed by the amended version since the statute is procedural. Additionally, there was no vested right in preserving appellate review of the decision under the prior version as the legislature did not express an intent that the amendment not be applied retroactively. Clinical Arts v. Smith, 218 Ga. App. 681, 462 S.E.2d 757 (1995); Truckstops of Am., Inc. v. Engram, 220 Ga. App. 289, 469 S.E.2d 425 (1996).

Even though the appellate division erroneously stated it was engaging in a de novo consideration of the evidence upon which the administrative law judge's findings were based, it in fact employed the proper standard of review when it substituted its findings for those of the ALJ to the extent it determined the ALJ's findings were unsupported by credible evidence. Harrell v. City of Albany Police Dep't, 219 Ga. App. 810, 466 S.E.2d 682 (1996).

In reviewing the testimony of medical experts, the appellate division was authorized to determine that the testimony of one was entitled to more credit and weight than that of the other and, even though there was evidence supporting the administrative law judge's finding, the award of the appellate division had to be affirmed. Bennett-Murray, Inc. v. Barnes, 222 Ga. App. 137, 473 S.E.2d 166 (1996).

Standard authorizes the appellate division to ensure that the administrative law judge's findings are supported by admissible evidence and to make determinations concerning the credibility of the evidence. Bennett-Murray, Inc. v. Barnes, 222 Ga. App. 137, 473 S.E.2d 166 (1996).

When the appellate division's award did not mention which standard it employed in vacating the administrative law judge's award, i.e., the amended version of O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a) or the de novo review applicable under the former version, the case would be remanded for review under the proper standard. AT & T v. Cotten, 222 Ga. App. 261, 474 S.E.2d 102 (1996).

O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), as amended in 1994, authorizes the appellate division to vacate the administrative law judge's findings of fact and conclusions of law as unsupported by a preponderance of the competent and credible evidence, and to substitute its own findings. Bankhead Enters. v. Beavers, 267 Ga. 506, 480 S.E.2d 840 (1997).

The 1994 amendment to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a) did not change the standard of review to be applied by the superior court in reviewing the findings of the appellate division, i.e., the court may not substitute its findings for the division's findings of fact. The court is bound by the "any evidence" standard of review and is not authorized to substitute its judgment as to the weight of the evidence or credibility of the witnesses. Owens Brockway Packaging, Inc. v. Hathorn, 227 Ga. App. 110, 488 S.E.2d 495 (1997).

Equity proper forum for relief from erroneous award.

- Relief from workers' compensation award in which employer was apparently erroneously found to be uninsured should properly have been sought in a court of equity pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 9-11-60. Russell v. Fast Framers, Inc., 164 Ga. App. 771, 298 S.E.2d 303 (1982).

Reconsideration under subsection (b).

- O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b) is not analogous to the statutory grant of authority to entertain a motion for new trial, but only authorizes the full board to entertain a motion for reconsideration of its prior award on the existing record. Asplundh Tree Expert Co. v. Gibson, 204 Ga. App. 853, 420 S.E.2d 797 (1992).

Appellate division's substitution of findings.

- Workers' compensation appellate division is authorized to substitute its findings for those of a workers' compensation administrative law judge only when its alternative findings are supported by some evidence in the record. Chaparral Boats, Inc. v. Heath, 269 Ga. App. 339, 606 S.E.2d 567 (2004).

Superior court erred in reversing the decision of the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation to overrule an administrative law judge's (ALJ) finding that an employee sustained a catastrophic injury under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-200.1(g) because the Appellate Division performed the appropriate review pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), and the superior court erred in finding that the Appellate Division committed legal error by improperly applying a de novo standard of review to the ALJ's findings of fact; after weighing the evidence received by the ALJ, the Appellate Division concluded that the preponderance of the competent and credible evidence did not support the ALJ's catastrophic injury finding, and thus, the Appellate Division substituted the Division's own findings for those of the ALJ, as the Division was authorized to do. Bonus Stores, Inc. v. Hensley, 309 Ga. App. 129, 710 S.E.2d 201 (2011).

Appellate division properly substituted own fndings.

- Judgment setting aside the appellate division's decision was reversed because as to the medical benefits issue, the appellate division found that the ALJ's award did not meet the evidentiary standards of O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a) due to lack of evidence of disability, substituted the court's own alternative findings, and ruled that the claimant was not entitled to ongoing medical benefits, which findings could not be disturbed since there was evidence to support those findings. J&R Schugel Trucking, Inc. v. Logan, 336 Ga. App. 899, 785 S.E.2d 581 (2016).

Attorney fees properly awarded.

- Administrative law judge (ALJ) and the Georgia Workers' Compensation Board properly awarded an employer its attorney fees as: (1) the claimant did not appeal the ALJ's decision to require the claimant to submit to an examination, but simply defied it; (2) the blatant defiance of an ALJ order was evidence that the claimant defended the proceedings in part without reasonable grounds; (3) the claimant was not required to defy the order so as to present the claimant's justification for doing so; (4) the claimant had a chance to present the claimant's justification to the ALJ, and failed to reiterate the claimant's position on an appeal to the Board; and (5) the ALJ and the Board had some evidence upon which to base a finding that when the claimant contested the sanctions motion, the claimant did so without reasonable grounds. Goswick v. Murray County Bd. of Educ., 281 Ga. App. 442, 636 S.E.2d 133 (2006), cert. denied, 2007 Ga. LEXIS 102 (Ga. 2007).

Superior court erred in ruling that the Appellate Division of the State Board of Workers' Compensation committed a legal error in the manner in which it exercised its discretion in distributing the legal fees allotted in a settlement between an employee and an employer because the contingent fee contracts provided prima facie proof that 25 percent of the offer the employer made before the employee dismissed the first attorney would be a reasonable fee for that attorney and that 25 percent of the final settlement would be a reasonable fee for the second attorney; the Appellate Division considered evidence regarding the first attorney's typical hourly rate, the amount of time the attorney spent pursuing the employee's claim, and the result of those efforts, as well as the amount of time the second attorney spent pursuing the employee's claim, and the result of those efforts, and because the Board was limited to distributing a total of $162,875 in fees, it was required to exercise its discretion to determine the relative value of the attorneys' services. Flores v. Keener, 302 Ga. App. 275, 690 S.E.2d 903 (2010).

Cited in Home Accident Ins. Co. v. Williams, 33 Ga. App. 540, 126 S.E. 868 (1925); American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Hardy, 36 Ga. App. 487, 137 S.E. 113 (1927); Lumbermen's Mut. Cas. Co. v. Lattimore, 165 Ga. 501, 141 S.E. 195 (1928); Macon v. U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co., 41 Ga. App. 774, 154 S.E. 702 (1930); U.S. Cas. Co. v. Smith, 46 Ga. App. 330, 167 S.E. 771 (1933); Maryland Cas. Co. v. Sanders, 49 Ga. App. 600, 176 S.E. 104 (1934); Fralish v. Royal Indem. Co., 53 Ga. App. 557, 186 S.E. 567 (1936); Fluellen v. Campbell Coal Co., 54 Ga. App. 355, 188 S.E. 54 (1936); Merry Bros. Brick & Tile Co. v. Holmes, 57 Ga. App. 281, 195 S.E. 223 (1938); Glens Falls Indem. Co. v. Sockwell, 58 Ga. App. 111, 197 S.E. 647 (1938); Lumbermen's Mut. Cas. Co. v. Cook, 195 Ga. 397, 24 S.E.2d 309 (1943); Utica Mut. Ins. Co. v. Rolax, 87 Ga. App. 733, 75 S.E.2d 205 (1953); Sweatman v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 100 Ga. App. 734, 112 S.E.2d 440 (1959); Sears, Roebuck & Co. v. Wilson, 215 Ga. 746, 113 S.E.2d 611 (1960); Sweatman v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 101 Ga. App. 920, 115 S.E.2d 596 (1960); Dempsey v. Chevrolet Div., 102 Ga. App. 408, 116 S.E.2d 509 (1960); Garrett v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 105 Ga. App. 308, 124 S.E.2d 450 (1962); Firth v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 107 Ga. App. 285, 129 S.E.2d 812 (1963); Fidelity & Cas. Co. v. Ledford, 108 Ga. App. 326, 132 S.E.2d 858 (1963); Guess v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 219 Ga. 581, 134 S.E.2d 783 (1964); Gusler v. Aetna Cas. & Sur. Co., 118 Ga. App. 846, 165 S.E.2d 877 (1968); Snider v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 119 Ga. App. 118, 166 S.E.2d 379 (1969); Travelers Ins. Co. v. Lovins, 123 Ga. App. 113, 179 S.E.2d 539 (1970); Zurich Ins. Co. v. Robinson, 127 Ga. App. 113, 192 S.E.2d 533 (1972); Waters v. Travelers Ins. Co., 129 Ga. App. 761, 201 S.E.2d 176 (1973); Garner v. Owens-Illinois Glass Container, 134 Ga. App. 917, 216 S.E.2d 709 (1975); Kay v. Maryland Cas. Co., 135 Ga. App. 108, 217 S.E.2d 413 (1975); Fieldcrest Mills, Inc. v. Richard, 141 Ga. App. 702, 234 S.E.2d 345 (1977); Walker v. Continental Ins. Co., 142 Ga. App. 115, 235 S.E.2d 389 (1977); Wills v. St. Paul Fire & Marine Ins. Co., 143 Ga. App. 562, 239 S.E.2d 219 (1977); Favors v. Travelers Ins. Co., 150 Ga. App. 741, 258 S.E.2d 554 (1979); Transport Ins. Co. v. Ferguson, 156 Ga. App. 715, 275 S.E.2d 354 (1980); Seitzingers, Inc. v. Barnes, 161 Ga. App. 855, 289 S.E.2d 315 (1982); K-Mart Corp. v. Anderson, 163 Ga. App. 493, 295 S.E.2d 186 (1982); Hon Co. v. Dobbs, 165 Ga. App. 654, 302 S.E.2d 365 (1983); Dycol, Inc. v. Crump, 169 Ga. App. 930, 315 S.E.2d 460 (1984); Keenan v. Jackson & Keenan Constr. Co., 175 Ga. App. 730, 334 S.E.2d 329 (1985); Henderson v. Mrs. Smith's Frozen Foods, 182 Ga. App. 829, 357 S.E.2d 271 (1987); Owen of Ga., Inc. v. Waugaman, 185 Ga. App. 827, 366 S.E.2d 173 (1988); Gaddis v. Georgia Mt. Contractors, 213 Ga. App. 126, 443 S.E.2d 710 (1994); Textile Coating, Ltd. v. Ramirez, 223 Ga. App. 236, 477 S.E.2d 388 (1996); Logan v. St. Joseph Hosp., 227 Ga. App. 853, 490 S.E.2d 483 (1997); Greene v. Dep't of Cmty. Health, 293 Ga. App. 201, 666 S.E.2d 590 (2008); Harris v. Eastman Youth Dev. Ctr., 315 Ga. App. 643, 727 S.E.2d 254 (2012).

Jurisdiction

No jurisdiction to review award without timely appeal.

- Full commission (now board) has no jurisdiction or authority to review final ruling granting an award when the application is not filed within the prescribed period. U.S. Cas. Co. v. Smith, 42 Ga. App. 774, 157 S.E. 351 (1931).

Award made by a sole commissioner (now administrative law judge) under former Code 1933, § 114-709 (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-104), conferring authority upon the commission (now board) to modify any prior award or settlement on ground of a change in condition, is, for the purpose of review by the full commission (now board), to be treated as any other award by a sole commissioner (now administrative law judge), and to obtain such review the application therefor must be made within the prescribed period. U.S. Cas. Co. v. Smith, 42 Ga. App. 774, 157 S.E. 351 (1931).

Commission (now board) has no authority, after a full hearing and rendition of an award denying compensation to a claimant, to which no appeal is entered, to entertain another application by claimant, filed after the time provided for entering an appeal; and when more than two years passed since rendition of an award denying compensation, review of such previous award on the ground that it was contrary to law and was procured by fraud was not available. Sutton v. Macon Gas Co., 46 Ga. App. 299, 167 S.E. 543 (1933).

Award of single director becomes final when there is no application for review filed with the full board within seven (now 20) days from the date of notice of award, and in such case the full board is without jurisdiction to review the award. Dempsey v. Chevrolet Div., 102 Ga. App. 408, 116 S.E.2d 509 (1960).

Since the provision that an application for review must be made within seven (now 20) days after notice of the award is jurisdictional, it cannot be waived. Dempsey v. Chevrolet Div., 102 Ga. App. 408, 116 S.E.2d 509 (1960).

State Board of Workers' Compensation may properly deny review of an application for benefits when an appeal to the full board is not marked filed until more than 30 (now 20) days after the original award decision. Argonaut Ins. Co. v. Hamilton, 146 Ga. App. 195, 245 S.E.2d 882 (1978).

Amended award must be issued within 20-day period.

- While the board made the decision to amend the original award within the 30-day (now 20-day) period, it had no authority to issue the amended award after that time limit. Aetna Cas. & Sur. Co. v. Barden, 179 Ga. App. 442, 346 S.E.2d 588 (1986).

Subject matter jurisdiction.

- Workers' Compensation Board's Appellate Division and the superior court had subject matter jurisdiction to consider whether an employee suffered a fictional new injury because under its modified scope of review set out in O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), the Appellate Division had subject matter jurisdiction to reconsider all of the administrative law judge's (ALJ) findings, and once it did so, upon a timely application, the superior court also had subject matter jurisdiction to consider the appeal; the issue before the Appellate Division was whether the ALJ properly ruled on the employee's injury date, which was an issue that arose from both the employee's argument and the employer's argument. Home Depot v. McCreary, 306 Ga. App. 805, 703 S.E.2d 392 (2010).

Appeal to superior court does not affect jurisdiction to amend award.

- Within the 20 days subsequent to the date that the board issues an award, it has authority to reconsider, amend, or revise that award for the limited purpose of correcting apparent errors and omissions. This authority exists notwithstanding the fact that an appeal to a superior court may already have been filed as to the original award during the same 20-day period. Travelers Ins. Co. v. Adkins, 200 Ga. App. 278, 407 S.E.2d 775 (1991).

Computation of time for applying for review.

- 30-day (now 20-day) period within which an application must be filed begins to run from the date that the legal requirement of giving notice has been satisfied. Favors v. Travelers Ins. Co., 150 Ga. App. 741, 258 S.E.2d 554 (1979).

Notice is effective upon proper posting; hence, the critical date from which the 30 (now 20) days begins to run is the date of such posting, not the date of actual receipt. Favors v. Travelers Ins. Co., 150 Ga. App. 741, 258 S.E.2d 554 (1979).

When the board effectuates notice by regular mail, the critical date is three days after the date of mailing to the correct address, and the 30-day (now 20-day) period for filing is computed from that date. Favors v. Travelers Ins. Co., 150 Ga. App. 741, 258 S.E.2d 554 (1979).

Objection to jurisdiction of board.

- If the commission (now board), on the filing of an application by an employer, causes written notice to be served upon the injured employee or the employee's dependents, the person so notified may object to the jurisdiction of the commission (now board) on any ground that will show an absence of authority to inquire into the matter. Ballenger v. Rock Run Iron Co., 166 Ga. 490, 143 S.E. 595 (1928).

Injunction not maintainable.

- When the commission (now board) causes notice to be served on an injured employee or the employee's dependents of the filing of an application by the employer, the employee or the dependents having a remedy at law, by filing with the commission (now board) objections to the jurisdiction of that body, a court of equity will not entertain a petition by such injured employee or the employee's dependents, in which the only relief sought is an injunction to prevent the commission (now board) from taking and exercising jurisdiction in the matter. Ballenger v. Rock Run Iron Co., 166 Ga. 490, 143 S.E. 595 (1928).

Procedure

Sufficient to mail notice of award to parties.

- Under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103, there is no requirement that a notice of an administrative law judge's award be mailed to the parties' counsel, and notice mailed to the parties is sufficient to start the time period running for appealing an award. Forsyth County Bd. of Educ. v. Trusty, 187 Ga. App. 470, 370 S.E.2d 793 (1988).

Procedure on review.

- When a claim for compensation was heard and determined by a single director or a deputy director, and timely application was made to the board, it was the function and duty of the board to hold a de novo hearing in the manner provided in this section. The board shall consider the case on the evidence before it, taken as provided, make independent findings of fact of its own, and render an award in accordance with its own findings of fact and law. Sweatman v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 96 Ga. App. 243, 99 S.E.2d 548 (1957); S.S. Kresge Co. v. Bryant, 122 Ga. App. 103, 176 S.E.2d 286 (1970).

Scope of review.

- Appellate division was authorized after weighing the evidence and assessing credibility to resolve inconsistencies in evidence regarding causation or the extent of the plaintiff's injuries in the plaintiff's favor, unlike the administrative law judge. Because there was evidence supporting the appellate decision, the superior court erred in reversing it. Johnson v. Weyerhaeuser Co., 231 Ga. App. 627, 499 S.E.2d 916 (1998).

Board must apply the law to the findings of fact and apply that law correctly. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

Board bound by law as enacted.

- Department (now board) is bound by what the law actually is rather than by a stipulation between the parties as to what it was, and in adjudicating a case upon a legal stipulation, it is its duty, if a point of law is erroneously stipulated, to look beyond it to the law as enacted. Globe Indem. Co. v. Legien, 47 Ga. App. 539, 171 S.E. 185 (1933).

Burden of proof on claimant.

- On appeal in all workers' compensation cases, the burden of proof is on the claimant. Department of Revenue v. Graham, 102 Ga. App. 756, 117 S.E.2d 902 (1960).

When appeal is entered, award of deputy director is vacated, and a new one must be entered by the full board. This may be done by adoption of the deputy director's award, or by making an entirely different award, but whatever is done must appear in the full board's order. S.S. Kresge Co. v. Bryant, 122 Ga. App. 103, 176 S.E.2d 286 (1970).

Affirmation or reversal of director's award.

- On review of award of a single director, full board acts as a fact-finding body, and may affirm the award or may reverse it, if the evidence so authorizes. Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953); Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953).

Board bound if supported by any competent evidence.

- Upon review by the board of an award of a director or deputy director thereof, the board is a fact-finding body, and may render an award approving or disapproving the award of the deputy director, which is binding on the courts when supported by any competent evidence. American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Jenkins, 63 Ga. App. 777, 12 S.E.2d 80 (1940).

Director's award may be reversed even if supported by some evidence.

- On review of the award of a single director, the full board acts as a fact-finding body, and when authorized by the evidence, it may reverse the award of the single director even though there is some evidence to support the director's findings. Austin v. General Accident, Fire & Life Assurance Corp., 56 Ga. App. 481, 193 S.E. 86 (1937); Watkins v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 75 Ga. App. 462, 43 S.E.2d 549 (1947); Davis v. American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 89 Ga. App. 57, 78 S.E.2d 557 (1953).

Appeal from an award of compensation made by one director to the full board opens the entire case as a de novo proceeding, and the board may, on review of the case, render an award notwithstanding the award appealed from. Georgia Dep't of Revenue v. Hughes, 99 Ga. App. 127, 108 S.E.2d 184 (1959).

On review from an award to the full board the entire case is a de novo proceeding, and the board acting as a fact-finding body may reverse the award of the deputy director, either from the evidence taken by the deputy or from additional evidence taken by order of the full board. Travelers Ins. Co. v. Buice, 124 Ga. App. 626, 185 S.E.2d 549 (1971).

Award in favor of employer authorized even if only claimant appeals.

- Appeal from award of compensation made by one director to the full board opens the entire case as a de novo proceeding; and the board may, on review, render an award in favor of the employer and the insurance carrier denying compensation, notwithstanding the fact that the award appealed from awarded compensation to the claimant, who alone appealed on the ground that the amount awarded to claimant was insufficient as a matter of law. Burel v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 56 Ga. App. 716, 193 S.E. 791 (1937); Malone v. Fireman's Fund Ins. Co., 147 Ga. App. 264, 248 S.E.2d 544 (1978).

When evidence is sufficient to authorize but not to demand finding either way, on appeal from award of single director to the full board, the board is fully empowered to reverse the award on the ground that it considered the preponderance of the evidence to be in favor of the defendant, but it is not empowered to reverse on the ground that there is not sufficient evidence to support the award. Ideal Mut. Ins. Co. v. Ray, 92 Ga. App. 273, 88 S.E.2d 428 (1955).

Board's award conclusive if sustained by any evidence.

- Award made upon review by all the directors of the board, setting aside a previous award by a single director upon issues of fact, is conclusive as to those issues if there is any evidence to sustain it. Webb v. General Accident, Fire & Life Ins. Co., 72 Ga. App. 127, 33 S.E.2d 273 (1945).

Award made by a single director, affirmed by the full board, is conclusive as to issues of fact found, if there is any evidence to sustain it. Standard Accident Ins. Co. v. Handspike, 76 Ga. App. 67, 44 S.E.2d 704 (1947).

When, after considering the whole record, the Court of Appeals is convinced that there is sufficient competent evidence to sustain an award of the hearing director and the full board, that court is without authority to disturb the findings. Watkins v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 75 Ga. App. 462, 43 S.E.2d 549 (1947).

Award made upon review by all directors of the board, affirming a previous award by one director upon issues of fact, is conclusive as to those issues if there is any evidence to sustain it. General Accident, Fire & Life Assurance Corp. v. Rhodes, 83 Ga. App. 837, 65 S.E.2d 254 (1951); Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Braswell, 85 Ga. App. 487, 69 S.E.2d 385 (1952); Baynes v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 101 Ga. App. 85, 112 S.E.2d 826 (1960); Davis v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 110 Ga. App. 389, 138 S.E.2d 603 (1964).

Substantial evidence standard applied on review.

- Employee's weekly amount of temporary total disability benefits was properly increased to the amount that reflected two-thirds of what was deemed the weekly wage, pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-261, and the employee failed to show entitlement to more than that amount; accordingly, pursuant to the standard of review of the State Board of Workers' Compensation's appellate division, pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), and the substantial evidence standard to be applied on judicial review, the wage amount required affirmance. Dallas v. Flying J, Inc., 279 Ga. App. 786, 632 S.E.2d 389 (2006).

Supported award cannot be set aside, absent fraud.

- Award made upon review by all the directors of the board, affirming an award by a single director upon issues of fact, is conclusive as to those issues, if there is any evidence to sustain it; and, in the absence of fraud, such award cannot be set aside. Reeves v. Royal Indem. Co., 73 Ga. App. 2, 35 S.E.2d 473 (1945); Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Davis, 73 Ga. App. 10, 35 S.E.2d 521 (1945).

When there is any competent evidence to support an award of the board, in the absence of fraud, the superior court and Court of Appeals are without authority to set it aside. Watkins v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 75 Ga. App. 462, 43 S.E.2d 549 (1947).

Award must be complied with until superseded.

- Fact that the employee has suffered an injury compensable under the workers' compensation law (see now O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1 et seq.) may be conclusively established by an agreement filed with and approved by the board, or by an award of the board after hearing evidence; regardless of which method is employed, it is a decision or judgment which must be complied with until it is superseded by a new award. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Webb, 109 Ga. App. 667, 137 S.E.2d 362 (1964); American Mut. Liab. Ins. Co. v. Chandler, 112 Ga. App. 574, 145 S.E.2d 816 (1965).

Original award is conclusive on both the employer and the employee as to the extent of disability of the employee, as found by the commission (now board), and as to the continuance thereof, until superseded by a new award. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Webb, 109 Ga. App. 667, 137 S.E.2d 362 (1964).

Newly discovered evidence.

- On appeal, a compensation case may not be remanded to the board for newly discovered evidence. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Snyder, 126 Ga. App. 31, 189 S.E.2d 919 (1972), overruled on other grounds, Sprayberry v. Commercial Union Ins. Co., 140 Ga. App. 758, 232 S.E.2d 111 (1976), overruled on other grounds, Brown Transp. Co. v. James, 243 Ga. 701, 257 S.E.2d 242 (1979).

Award affirmed by board and court not subject to further review.

- Board had no authority to review an award denying compensation to the claimant when the award had been affirmed by the full board and by the judge of the superior court and was not appealed from. Martin v. United States Fid. & Guar. Co., 58 Ga. App. 59, 197 S.E. 660 (1938).

Evidence

Fact-finding body.

- When a case was brought before the full board under this section, the board became a fact-finding body. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

On review, the full board acts as a fact-finding body. Atkinson v. Fairforest Co., 90 Ga. App. 425, 83 S.E.2d 243 (1954).

No right to demand retrial.

- On appeal to the full board, neither party as a matter of right can demand that the case be tried as though no hearing had been held. Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953).

Full board has authority to hear additional evidence when a case is before it on review, when this is deemed advisable by the board, but this does not mean that a party has the right to try their case over again as though it had not been tried, unless, in the discretion of the board, this is deemed advisable. Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953).

Party may offer evidence as well as move for exclusion of evidence.

- Party to appeal may offer evidence before the board and may act to have matter in the record that is not proper for consideration as evidence excluded or removed from consideration. Peters v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 113 Ga. App. 41, 147 S.E.2d 26 (1966).

Board may consider evidence heard by director, take additional testimony, or remand.

- Under this section, the board may make findings of fact and reach conclusions of law based thereon in the same manner as the single director; the board may take the evidence heard by the single director and make findings of fact therefrom, may take additional testimony, or may remand the case to the single director to take additional evidence. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

The full board may remand the case to a single director for the purpose of taking additional testimony. Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953).

Witnesses permitted.

- The full board may hear the parties at issue and their representatives and witnesses, if this is deemed advisable. Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953); Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953); Pacific Employers Ins. Co. v. West, 213 Ga. 296, 99 S.E.2d 89 (1957); Insurance Co. of N. Am. v. Dimaio, 120 Ga. App. 214, 170 S.E.2d 258 (1969); Travelers Ins. Co. v. Buice, 124 Ga. App. 626, 185 S.E.2d 549 (1971).

Appeal to the board is a de novo proceeding, when either party can raise any issue affecting the case, and the board may hear the parties and their representatives and witnesses. Peters v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 113 Ga. App. 41, 147 S.E.2d 26 (1966).

Taking additional evidence is discretionary.

- Full board is not obliged to take additional testimony when it is not deemed advisable to do so. Southeastern Express Co. v. Edmondson, 30 Ga. App. 697, 119 S.E. 39 (1923); Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953); Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953).

Hearing before the full board is de novo; the parties may offer additional evidence, and the board has discretion in hearing additional testimony. American Cas. Co. v. Wilson, 99 Ga. App. 219, 108 S.E.2d 137 (1959).

In hearing an appeal de novo from an award by a deputy director, the board has discretion as to whether it will hear additional testimony or pass anew upon the evidence introduced before the deputy director. Young v. American Ins. Co., 110 Ga. App. 269, 138 S.E.2d 385 (1964).

Board's power to order the taking of additional evidence on review is discretionary. Continental Ins. Co. v. McDaniel, 118 Ga. App. 344, 163 S.E.2d 923 (1968); Cameron v. American Can Co., 120 Ga. App. 236, 170 S.E.2d 267 (1969).

Guidance for exercise of discretion.

- Board, in exercising its power to take additional evidence on review, may properly be guided by principles applicable in the courts in passing on motions for new trial based on newly discovered evidence. Insurance Co. of N. Am. v. Dimaio, 120 Ga. App. 214, 170 S.E.2d 258 (1969); Binswanger Glass Co. v. Brooks, 160 Ga. App. 701, 288 S.E.2d 61 (1981).

Newly discovered evidence.

- While former Civil Code 1910, § 6086 (see now O.C.G.A. § 5-5-23), relating to newly discovered evidence as ground for new trial, was not part of workers' compensation law, upon an application for review the full commission (now board), in determining whether on account of newly discovered evidence it will rehear witnesses, may properly be guided by considerations similar to those referred to in that section. Southeastern Express Co. v. Edmondson, 30 Ga. App. 697, 119 S.E. 39 (1923).

Abuse of discretion.

- Under this section and the rules promulgated by the board, the board may or may not hear or order additional evidence taken, as in its discretion may be deemed advisable; the exercise of its discretion in such a matter may, in a proper case, be the subject of review by the courts. Adams v. Utica Mut. Ins. Co., 88 Ga. App. 386, 76 S.E.2d 709 (1953); Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953).

Board's power to order the taking of additional evidence on review is a discretionary one, and must not be disturbed except in cases in which it is manifestly abused. Insurance Co. of N. Am. v. Dimaio, 120 Ga. App. 214, 170 S.E.2d 258 (1969); Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Snyder, 126 Ga. App. 31, 189 S.E.2d 919 (1972), overruled on other grounds, Sprayberry v. Commercial Union Ins. Co., 140 Ga. App. 758, 232 S.E.2d 111 (1976), overruled on other grounds, Brown Transp. Co. v. James, 243 Ga. 701, 257 S.E.2d 242 (1979).

No discretion to refuse evidence erroneously rejected in first instance.

- While the full board has discretion as to whether or not it shall hear new evidence or review only the evidence before the deputy director, that discretion does not extend to cases in which evidence which was properly offered in the first instance and erroneously rejected is reoffered for consideration by the full board. American Cas. Co. v. Wilson, 99 Ga. App. 219, 108 S.E.2d 137 (1959).

Duty to consider all evidence properly before director.

- Upon a review by the full board of all the evidence which was before the single director, it is the duty of that body to consider all evidence properly before the single director, even though erroneously excluded and not considered by the director. American Cas. Co. v. Wilson, 99 Ga. App. 219, 108 S.E.2d 137 (1959).

Authority to order taking of testimony on own motion.

- If, for some reason, employer is estopped from making application to take additional testimony, it does not follow that the board itself, in its discretion and under its statutory authority, could not order it taken. Cameron v. American Can Co., 120 Ga. App. 236, 170 S.E.2d 267 (1969).

Order granting or denying additional testimony not required.

- There was no requirement in this section that the board enter an order formally and expressly granting or denying a party's application to have additional evidence taken. Insurance Co. of N. Am. v. Dimaio, 120 Ga. App. 214, 170 S.E.2d 258 (1969).

No abuse shown in refusal to take additional medical testimony.

- When three doctors examined the claimant, and their testimony was before the single director when findings and award in favor of claimant were made by the director and before the full board on review, it was not shown that the full board acted in excess of its powers or abused its discretion in refusing to reopen the hearing to take additional testimony on the question of whether corrective surgical treatment should be ordered. Butler v. Fidelity & Cas. Co., 88 Ga. App. 620, 76 S.E.2d 813 (1953).

Receipt of medical records evidence not authorized under section.

- While the full board does have discretion to hear additional testimony, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103 makes absolutely no provision for the receipt of medical records as evidence. Binswanger Glass Co. v. Brooks, 160 Ga. App. 701, 288 S.E.2d 61 (1981).

New findings unnecessary.

- Fact that the full board took additional testimony did not necessitate a new and distinct finding if full board did not see fit to change the award of the single director. Watkins v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 75 Ga. App. 462, 43 S.E.2d 549 (1947).

Consideration of admissible evidence only.

- Board or a single director thereof sits as a court, judging both the law and the facts, rather than as a jury, so that the board or a director thereof sifts out inadmissible evidence and considers only that which is admissible under the rules of evidence, whether actually ruled out or not. Atlanta Newspapers, Inc. v. Clements, 88 Ga. App. 648, 76 S.E.2d 830 (1953); U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co. v. Doyle, 96 Ga. App. 745, 101 S.E.2d 600 (1957).

Record held to show consideration of testimony taken.

- When the full board stated that after exhaustive and painstaking review of the entire record it unanimously affirmed the award of the single director, the record indicated that the board did take into account the additional testimony taken. Watkins v. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co., 75 Ga. App. 462, 43 S.E.2d 549 (1947).

Reference to all evidence not required.

- There is no requirement that specific reference be made to all the evidence, and the mere failure to refer to all the evidence in the findings of fact does not establish that the board did not consider the evidence in its review of the matter. Roberson v. Engelhard Corp., 190 Ga. App. 674, 379 S.E.2d 524, cert. denied, 190 Ga. App. 899, 379 S.E.2d 524 (1989).

Binding effect of stipulations by parties.

- Board erred in reversing administrative law judge's decision after considering evidence which conflicted with a stipulation made by the parties during the hearing, as the parties prepared their cases with the stipulation in mind and therefore did not have an opportunity to present evidence on the issue. Food Giant, Inc. v. Brown, 174 Ga. App. 485, 330 S.E.2d 183 (1985).

Board sole judge of credibility of witness.

- In acting upon a prior award, the full board as a fact-finding body is the sole judge of the credibility of witnesses. Travelers Ins. Co. v. Buice, 124 Ga. App. 626, 185 S.E.2d 549 (1971).

Expert opinions not conclusive.

- In determining award from the evidence, it is the duty of the board to consider all the surrounding facts and circumstances concerning the inquiry, together with the testimony of the witnesses; in this consideration the opinions of expert witnesses are not conclusive upon the board, but may be disregarded. Continental Cas. Co. v. Bennett, 69 Ga. App. 683, 26 S.E.2d 682 (1943).

Findings of Fact

Findings required.

- Board, on de novo hearing, is required to make findings of fact on which to base its decision. Pacific Employers Ins. Co. v. West, 213 Ga. 296, 99 S.E.2d 89 (1957).

Board not bound by director's findings and conclusions.

- Full board on review is not restricted by any of the findings of the single director as to the preliminary facts or the ultimate fact, and no conclusion of the single director, whether preliminary or ultimate, is binding on the full board. Peninsular Life Ins. Co. v. Brand, 57 Ga. App. 526, 196 S.E. 264 (1938).

Full board has the power and right to consider a claim entirely anew by hearing evidence, making findings of fact, and making findings of law, just as if the claim had not been heard before the single director, even though findings of fact of the single director are supported by some evidence. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

Adoption of findings or making of new findings by board.

- When the parties introduce no additional evidence at the hearing before the board, the board can adopt the deputy director's findings of fact as its own findings of fact or it can make independent and different findings of fact from evidence heard by the deputy director. Pacific Employers Ins. Co. v. West, 213 Ga. 296, 99 S.E.2d 89 (1957).

When no additional evidence is offered by the parties, the full board may adopt the deputy director's findings of fact as its own findings of fact, or it may make independent and different findings of fact from the evidence heard by the deputy director, but it must do one or the other. American Cas. Co. v. Wilson, 99 Ga. App. 219, 108 S.E.2d 137 (1959).

Appeal to the full board from the action of a deputy director invokes a de novo proceeding in the matter, which must result in the full board's own findings of fact and award. If, on appeal, the parties introduce no additional evidence, the full board may, based on the evidence heard by the deputy director, adopt the deputy director's findings of fact as its own or it may make additional findings or independent and different findings. Gatrell v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 121 Ga. App. 467, 174 S.E.2d 237, rev'd on other grounds, 226 Ga. 688, 177 S.E.2d 77 (1970).

When the award of the full board specifically states that the board reviewed the entire record and made the same findings as the deputy director, the award cannot be attacked as having made no independent findings of fact. Colbert v. American Fire & Cas. Co., 124 Ga. App. 808, 186 S.E.2d 432 (1971), aff'd sub nom. Colbert v. Apex Carpet Finishers, Inc., 229 Ga. 770, 194 S.E.2d 468 (1972).

Duty to make new findings when director's findings not approved.

- It is the duty of the board to make new findings of fact, if they deem it necessary and do not approve the findings of the single director; this the board may do by taking additional evidence or by using the evidence before the single director. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

Acceptance of findings with different application of law.

- Full board may accept the findings of fact made by a single director while ruling that the director did not apply the correct law to such facts. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

Findings of administrative law judge superseded.

- Finding by the full board supersedes a finding by a director or deputy director, when supported by the evidence. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co. v. Williams, 129 Ga. App. 354, 199 S.E.2d 673 (1973).

When the administrative law judge and the full board have articulated the same facts and have reached a different conclusion based on those facts, the findings and conclusions of the full board supersede those of the administrative law judge. Assurance Co. of Am. v. Shepherd, 155 Ga. App. 36, 270 S.E.2d 268 (1980).

Board's findings binding.

- Upon appeal to the superior court from any final award or any other final decision of the board, findings of fact made by the board within its power are, in the absence of fraud, conclusive and binding upon all the courts. Redd v. U.S. Cas. Co., 83 Ga. App. 838, 65 S.E.2d 255 (1951).

Director on hearing acts in lieu of and for the board, and the director's findings of fact are conclusive unless set aside. When the board does not set such findings aside but approves them and bases an improper ruling of law thereon, a superior court, in holding that the board made an erroneous ruling of law, is nevertheless bound by the facts as found by the single director and adopted by the board. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. of Am. v. Rucker, 87 Ga. App. 375, 73 S.E.2d 609 (1952).

Full board may review the evidence taken before a single director and, based thereon, reverse the award in whole or in part. Its findings of fact, when supported by any competent evidence, are binding upon the courts. Burnett v. King, 88 Ga. App. 771, 77 S.E.2d 772 (1953).

Properly supported findings of fact of the board are binding upon the courts, and when the findings support an award the courts cannot disturb it. Garrett v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 105 Ga. App. 308, 124 S.E.2d 450 (1962).

Because a decision rendered by the Georgia Board of Workers' Compensation that an employee was no longer entitled to benefits for a work-related injury was supported by some evidence, the superior court exceeded its authority in reversing the decision. Bibb County Bd. of Educ. v. Bembry, 286 Ga. App. 878, 650 S.E.2d 427 (2007).

Superior court may not vacate and set aside a corrected award of Workers' Compensation Board as being null and void and of no effect whatsoever. Denton v. U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co., 158 Ga. App. 849, 282 S.E.2d 350 (1981).

Remand of order for lack of findings.

- Order of the board which neither sets forth findings of fact nor adopts those of the director must be remanded to the board, even though the board adopted the award of the director with an amendment which added certain findings of fact. Gatrell v. Employers Mut. Liab. Ins. Co., 121 Ga. App. 467, 174 S.E.2d 237, rev'd on other grounds, 226 Ga. 688, 177 S.E.2d 77 (1970).

Remand for findings unnecessary when facts undisputed.

- While in a proceeding before the commission (now board) the award must be accompanied with a statement of the findings of fact upon which it is made, which contemplates a concise but comprehensive statement of the cause and circumstances of the accident as the commission (now board) shall find it in truth to have occurred, it is not necessary, even when no such finding of fact accompanies the award, to remand a case to the commission (now board) in order that findings of fact be stated in a case in which the facts as disclosed by the record are undisputed. Employers' Liab. Assurance Corp. v. Montgomery, 45 Ga. App. 634, 165 S.E. 903 (1932).

Support of judgment from findings.

- On appeal, one or two facts found by the full board may be sufficient to authorize the order or judgment, or it may take finding of all the facts to authorize the order or judgment. Moreover, merely because the evidence fails to support one or more findings of fact, reversal is not necessarily required if the evidence supports a sufficient number of findings of fact, all of which taken together support the judgment or order. Peninsular Life Ins. Co. v. Brand, 57 Ga. App. 526, 196 S.E. 264 (1938).

Superior court erred in reversing an award of the Appellate Division of the Georgia State Board of Workers' Compensation based upon the court's determination that an administrative law judge's findings were supported by a preponderance of the evidence because, pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(a), there was record evidence to support the Board's award. Master Craft Flooring v. Dunham, 308 Ga. App. 430, 708 S.E.2d 36 (2011), cert. denied, No. S11C1045, 2011 Ga. LEXIS 496 (Ga. 2011).

Correction of Apparent Errors

Under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103, board may correct the award as to apparent errors or omissions "within the time limit provided" in which to appeal the board's order. Denton v. U.S. Fid. & Guar. Co., 158 Ga. App. 849, 282 S.E.2d 350 (1981).

Authority to amend awards.

- 1975 amendment to this section, which added subsection (b), gave the board authority to amend its awards to correct obvious errors. Cotton States Ins. Co. v. Bates, 140 Ga. App. 428, 231 S.E.2d 445 (1976).

In revising its initial award on a motion for reconsideration, the board acted within its authority when it confined itself to the existing record and certain facts it erroneously omitted in its initial consideration. Gibson v. Lindale Mfg. Co., 218 Ga. App. 163, 460 S.E.2d 543 (1995).

O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b) only permits amendment to correct obvious errors and was not intended to open the case for a de novo hearing. Scott v. Tremco, Inc., 199 Ga. App. 606, 405 S.E.2d 347, cert. denied, 199 Ga. App. 907, 405 S.E.2d 347 (1991).

O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b) gives the full board authority to amend its awards to correct obvious errors. This is to allow the full board to correct mistakes in an award which appear in the record of the case. The intent of subsection (b) is not to open the case for a de novo hearing in regard to whether compensation is payable. Asplundh Tree Expert Co. v. Gibson, 204 Ga. App. 853, 420 S.E.2d 797 (1992).

Correction of mistakes appearing in record.

- The intent of the 1975 amendment to this section, adding subsection (b), was to allow the board to correct mistakes in an award which appear in the record of the case. Cotton States Ins. Co. v. Bates, 140 Ga. App. 428, 231 S.E.2d 445 (1976).

The intent of the 1975 amendment to this section, adding subsection (b), was not to open the case for a de novo hearing in regard to whether compensation was payable. Cotton States Ins. Co. v. Bates, 140 Ga. App. 428, 231 S.E.2d 445 (1976).

The purpose of the statute permitting amendment of an award within the period for seeking appellate review, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103, is only to permit correction of mistakes which appear in the record. It was not intended to open the case for a de novo hearing. McGinty v. Alfred L. Simpson & Co., 188 Ga. App. 718, 374 S.E.2d 217 (1988).

When award may be amended or revised.

- Original award must be amended or revised "within" the applicable 30-day (now 20-day) period; it cannot be "reconsidered" during the 30-day (now 20-day) period and then subsequently amended or revised. Aetna Cas. & Sur. Co. v. Barden, 179 Ga. App. 442, 346 S.E.2d 588 (1986).

Award based on erroneous reliance on caselaw.

- Full board clearly had the authority to vacate its original award and to issue a revised award pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b) after the full board found that the award was issued based upon an erroneous reliance upon caselaw. Asplundh Tree Expert Co. v. Gibson, 204 Ga. App. 853, 420 S.E.2d 797 (1992).

Award, not based on apparent error, void.

- Board, being an administrative body possessing only the power conferred upon it by statute, has no authority under O.C.G.A. § 34-9-103(b) to reconsider and vacate an award which contained no apparent error or omission, and accordingly the board's subsequent award is null and void. Dougherty County Bd. of Educ. v. Lundy, 183 Ga. App. 550, 359 S.E.2d 403, cert. denied, 183 Ga. App. 906, 359 S.E.2d 403 (1987).

Board's decision based on erroneous theory.

- State Board of Workers' Compensation erred in finding that an employee's accident did not arise out of employment under the Workers' Compensation Act, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-1(4), because the decision was based upon an erroneous theory regarding what conduct constituted a deviation from employment that would bar compensation under the Act; the decision contravened the humanitarian purpose of the Act, O.C.G.A. § 34-9-23, and distorted the definition of a deviation from employment to say that the employee's attempt to stop a rolling car was a purely personal mission because at the instant the employee's car began to roll, the employee was on duty. Stokes v. Coweta County Bd. of Educ., 313 Ga. App. 505, 722 S.E.2d 118 (2012), cert. denied, No. S12C0880, 2012 Ga. LEXIS 473 (Ga. 2012).

Board did not reach decision based upon erroneous legal theory.

- Superior court erred in reversing the decision of the State Board of Workers' Compensation (Georgia) denying an employee's claim for temporary total disability benefits because the superior court failed to conduct an "any evidence" standard of review; the board did not reach a decision based upon an erroneous legal theory because the board concluded that the employee failed to engage in a diligent job search based upon factors that were within the employee's control. Brown Mech. Contrs., Inc. v. Maughon, 317 Ga. App. 106, 728 S.E.2d 757 (2012).

RESEARCH REFERENCES

Am. Jur. 2d.

- 82 Am. Jur. 2d, Workers' Compensation, § 632 et seq.

ALR.

- Relief from settlement or compromise of claim under Workmen's Compensation Act upon ground of fraud or mistake respecting amount of compensation to which employee was entitled, 121 A.L.R. 1270.

Workmen's compensation: character or status of right or claim within provision of act requiring or authorizing approval by the court or commission of settlement or compromise, 153 A.L.R. 285.

Workmen's compensation: time and jurisdiction for review, reopening, modification, or reinstatement of award or agreement, 165 A.L.R. 9.

Right to workers' compensation for emotional distress or like injury suffered by claimant as a result of sudden emotional stimuli involving personnel action, 82 A.L.R.5th 149.

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