FROM THE ARKANSAS WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMISSION [NO.
& Boyd, PLLC, by: Michael W. Boyd, for appellant.
ton, Newkirk & Jones, by: Mike Stiles, for appellees
Manpower International, Inc., New Hampshire Insurance
Company, and Sedgwick Claims Management Services, Inc.
Friday, Eldredge & Clark, LLP, by: James M. Simpson, Guy
Alton Wade, and Phillip M. Brick, Jr., for appellees Welspun
Pipes, Inc., Welspun Tubular, LLC, Saleem Sawar, Debasish
Bhowmick, and Martin Cain.
RAYMOND R. ABRAMSON, Judge.
Juan Pineda appeals from the Arkansas Workers'
Compensation Commission's (the Commission) October 16,
2016 opinion affirming and adopting the December 22, 2015
opinion of the administrative law judge (ALJ). We affirm.
understanding of the procedural history of the case is
necessary to begin. Pineda filed a claim for medical and
indemnity benefits based on severe injuries that he received
to his back, right upper extremity, hips, and lower
extremities on February 6, 2010. Pineda settled his
workers'-compensation claim with Manpower, Inc., by a
joint petition. A joint-petition hearing was held on July 25,
2013, and ALJ Barbara Webb approved a joint-petition filed by
Pineda, and Manpower, Inc., and approved by the Death and
Permanent Total Disability Trust Fund to resolve Pineda's
workers'-compensation claim arising out of the injury
that occurred on February 6, 2010. The joint-petition order
was also dated July 25, 2013.
February 1, 2013, several months prior to the joint-petition
order, Pineda filed a complaint in the Pulaski County Circuit
Court against Welspun Pipes, Inc., Welspun Tubular, LLC,
Saleem Sawar, Debasish Bhowmick, and Martin Cain. Pineda
asserted a claim for negligence arising from his work-related
injury at Welspun. Welspun, Sawar, Bhowmick, and Cain
affirmatively pled exclusivity of workers' compensation
as a bar to Pineda's recovery. On May 12, 2014, the circuit court held
that the Commission had exclusive, original jurisdiction to
determine whether Welspun was Pineda's employer and
whether Welspun, Sawar, Bhowmick, and Cain were therefore
immune from suit. By doing so, the circuit court granted the
parties leave to pursue with the Commission the issue of
13, 2014, Welspun Pipes, Inc., and Welspun Tubular, LLC,
represented by the same counsel, requested a hearing to
determine whether Pineda was its employee at the time of his
injury. A prehearing order was entered by ALJ Chandra Black
on September 16, 2014, following a prehearing telephone
conference. A hearing was held on October 14, 2015. The ALJ
accepted the stipulations agreed upon by the parties. The
only live testimony received was from Martin Cain.
Pineda's deposition was also offered and received as an
December 22, 2015, ALJ Black filed an opinion concluding that
the Commission had jurisdiction and that Welspun is protected
by the exclusive-remedy provision of Arkansas Code Annotated
section 11-9-105 (Repl. 2012). Pineda appealed the decision
to the Commission.
October 16, 2016, the Commission entered an opinion and order
affirming and adopting the decision of the ALJ. The
Commission restated the findings that the Arkansas
Workers' Compensation Commission has jurisdiction; that
the proposed stipulations are hereby accepted as fact; that
Welspun is protected by the exclusive-remedy provision of
Arkansas Code Annotated section 11-9-105; and that the
dual-employment doctrine applies in this matter, thereby
resulting in the claimant's being jointly employed by
Welspun and Manpower at the time of his compensable accident
of February 6, 2010. This appeal follows.
appeal, Pineda argues the following three points: (1)
pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated section 11-9-805, the
Commission lost jurisdiction of his workers'-compensation
claim upon the entry of the joint-petition order; (2) Welspun
Tubular, LLC, has failed to establish it was his employer,
dual or otherwise; (3) even as a potential dual employer,
Welspun Pipes, Inc., failed in its obligation to provide
workers'-compensation coverage and benefits for him,
which negates its special-employer privilege of
was injured while working at the Welspun plant. Pineda
initially applied for a job with Manpower, a
temporary-employment agency, to work at Welspun. Manpower
interviewed and hired Pineda before it assigned him to work
at Welspun. Manpower maintained an office on Welspun's
facilities near the Welspun plant. Manpower recruited,
screened, and hired employees to work only for Welspun; it
did not supply employees to any other company from its Little
Rock, Arkansas, office.
Pineda was hired, he completed a Welspun safety orientation.
The safety indoctrination was taught by a Welspun employee.
Pineda was taken into the Welspun plant and received training
from Welspun. Pineda started work the following day and went
directly into the Welspun plant. He clocked in and clocked
out at the Welspun plant. He reported to his Welspun
supervisor, and Welspun assigned him to various jobs in the
plant depending on where he was needed. Welspun reimbursed
Manpower for Pineda's pay plus a premium for the services
Manpower provided. Pineda would return to the Manpower office
only to pick up his paycheck.
February 6, 2010, Pineda went into the Welspun plant, and his
supervisor sent him to the shipping area of the plant.
Welspun maintains that he was under its direction and
control. He was working for, supervised by, and under the
sole direction of Welspun at the time of his injury. The
staffing-services agreement between Manpower and Welspun
Pipes was controlling at the time of Pineda's injury.
Pursuant to the agreement, Manpower agreed that after a
proper screening, it would provide employees to Welspun.
Manpower also agreed to pay the Welspun employees their wages
and benefits. Welspun agreed to supervise and control the
work, premises, processes, and systems to be performed by the
employees. All the work done by Manpower's temporary
employees was work for Welspun. Welspun maintained the right
to control their work.
first point on appeal is that pursuant to Arkansas Code
Annotated section 11-9-805, the Commission lost jurisdiction
of his workers'-compensation claim upon the entry of the
joint-petition order. The statute provides:
(a) Upon petition filed by the employer or carrier and the
injured employee requesting that a final settlement be had
between the parties, the Workers' Compensation Commission
shall hear the petition and take testimony and make
investigations as may be ...