Court of Appeals of Missouri, Southern District, Second Division
DENNIS L. HADLEY (DECEASED) by NANNETTE HADLEY, Claimant-Respondent,
BECO CONCRETE PRODUCTS, INC., Employer-Appellant.
FROM THE LABOR AND INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS COMMISSION. AFFIRMED
Steffen Rahmeyer, J.
Concrete Products, Inc. ("Employer") appeals an
award of death benefits to Nannette Hadley
("Claimant") by the Labor and Industrial Relations
Commission (the "Commission"). Nannette was the
sole dependent of Dennis L. Hadley ("Decedent"),
who was a long-time, commercial truck driver for Employer.
Decedent was killed in an accident at approximately 8:40 a.m.
on July 25, 2012 when the passenger-side tires of the truck
and attached flatbed trailer Decedent was driving left the
right side of the highway on a sweeping curve to the left and
the truck and trailer then crossed the highway and came to
rest on the opposite side. The Commission calculated
Claimant's death benefit pursuant to sections 287.240(2)
and 287.250.4, and rejected Employer's claim that the
death benefit should be reduced under section 287.120.5, RSMo
Cum.Supp. 2005, because Decedent's death was caused by
Decedent's "failure to obey [a] reasonable rule
adopted by [Employer] for the safety of
employees." In two points, Employer contends that the
Commission "erred as a matter of law" in
calculating Claimant's death benefit and in rejecting
Employer's claim that the death benefit should be reduced
under section 287.120.5. We deny Employer's points, and
affirm the Commission's award.
review the final decision and findings of the Commission and,
to the extent adopted or incorporated by the Commission in
its decision, the findings and conclusions of the
administrative law judge. Sell v. Ozarks Medical
Center, 333 S.W.3d 498, 505 (Mo.App. S.D. 2011).
article V, section 18 of the Missouri Constitution, judicial
review of an administrative body's final decision and
findings "shall include the determination whether the
same are authorized by law, and in cases in which a hearing
is required by law, whether the same are supported by
competent and substantial evidence upon the whole
record." Section 287.495.1 further grants the appellate
court "jurisdiction" to review "all decisions
of the commission, " authorizes an appeal to the
appellate court from "[t]he final award of the
commission, " and provides that the appellate court
shall review only questions of law and may modify, reverse,
remand for rehearing, or set aside the award only on the
(1)That the commission acted without or in excess of its
(2)That the award was procured by fraud;
(3)That the facts found by the commission do not support the
(4) That there was not sufficient competent evidence in the
record to warrant the making of the award.
constitutional standard of "competent and substantial
evidence upon the whole record" is in
"harmony" with the statutory standard of
"sufficient competent evidence in the record, " and
neither standard requires a reviewing court to view the
evidence and inferences from the evidence in the light most
favorable to the Commission's decision. Hampton v.
Big Boy Steel Erection, 121 S.W.3d 220, 222, 222-23 (Mo.
banc 2003). As a result, in applying these standards, an
appellate court's review is limited to "a single
determination whether, considering the whole record, there is
sufficient competent and substantial evidence to support the
award. This standard would not be met in the rare case when
the award is contrary to the overwhelming weight of the
evidence." Id. at 223; Harrah v. Tour St.
Louis, 415 S.W.3d 779, 780 (Mo.App. E.D. 2013).
review questions of law de novo, and defer to the
Commission on issues of fact and issues "concerning the
credibility and weight to be given to conflicting
evidence." Allcorn v. Tap Enterprises, Inc.,
277 S.W.3d 823, 827 (Mo.App. S.D. 2009). Further, except for
expert testimony on matters that are outside the knowledge
and understanding of lay persons and the Commission,
"the Commission may decide a case 'upon its
disbelief of uncontradicted and unimpeached
testimony.'" Angus v. Second Injury Fund,
328 S.W.3d 294, 300, 299-303 (Mo.App. W.D. 2010).
successfully challenge the Commission's factual findings,
the complaining party must:
(1) marshal all record evidence favorable to the award; (2)
marshal all unfavorable evidence, subject to the
Commission's explicit or implicit credibility
determinations; and (3) show in the context of the whole
record how the unfavorable evidence so overwhelms the
favorable evidence and its reasonable inferences that the
award is, in context, not supported by competent and
substantial evidence. See Jordan v. USF Holland Motor
Freight, Inc., 383 S.W.3d 93, 95 (Mo.App. S.D. 2012).
Brune v. Johnson Controls, 457 S.W.3d 372, 377
(Mo.App. E.D. 2015).
amendment of Missouri's workers' compensation law in
2005, the provisions of the law shall be construed ...