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Biger v. Erwin

New Jersey Supreme Court


Decided: October 26, 1970.

CLAUDINE G. BIGER, PETITIONER-RESPONDENT,
v.
DR. R. C. ERWIN, RESPONDENT-APPELLANT. E. B. STEWARD, RESPONDENT-RESPONDENT, AND MONMOUTH PARK JOCKEY CLUB, RESPONDENT-RESPONDENT

For affirmance -- Chief Justice Weintraub and Justices Jacobs, Francis, Proctor, Hall, Schettino and Haneman. For reversal -- None.

Per Curiam

[57 NJ Page 96] The decedent, a free-lance jockey, died as the result of injuries sustained by him during a steeplechase race at the Monmouth Park Jockey Club. He was riding a horse owned by Dr. R. C. Erwin and trained by

[57 NJ Page 97]

Mr. E. B. Steward. His widow filed workmen's compensation claims against the Club, the Owner and the Trainer and in the Division she received an award on behalf of herself and her infant son against the Owner and the Trainer. On appeal, the Monmouth County Court sustained the award against the Owner but not the Trainer. It found that the decedent was neither an independent contractor nor a casual employee but was an employee of the Owner (though not the Club or the Trainer) entitled as such to the broad protection of the Workmen's Compensation Act. We agree with its finding and affirm essentially for the reasons expressed by Judge McGann (Biger v. Erwin, 108 N.J. Super. 293 (Cty. Ct. 1970)). Cf. Isenberg v. California Employment Stabilization Com'n, 30 Cal. 2d 34, 180 P. 2d 11 (1947); Drillon v. Industrial Accident Commission, 17 Cal. 2d 346, 110 P. 2d 64 (1941); Rice v. Stoneham, 254 N.Y. 531, 173 N.E. 853 (1930); Pierce v. Bowen, 247 N.Y. 305, 160 N.E. 379 (1928); see also Nikolas v. Kirner, 247 Iowa 231, 73 N.W. 2d 7, 9 (1955); Simmons v. Kansas City Jockey Club, 334 Mo. 99, 66 S.W. 2d 119, 122 (1933).

Affirmed.

19701026


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