Abstract

In the case of Brown v Campbell County Bd. of Educ., 914 S.W.2d407 (Tenn. 1995), the Tennessee Supreme Court found that use of the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment (AMA Guides), Fourth Edition, was proper and constitutional. Two claimants in this case challenged the constitutionality of Tennessee Statute 50-6-241, which stated, in part, that «the medical impairment rating [is] determined pursuant to the provisions of the American Medical Association Guides.» The Court upheld the constitutionality of the use of the AMA Guides and found that this use did not violate equal protection, in part because the legitimate state interests,—uniformity, fairness, and predictability—are equally applicable to the use of the AMA Guides: «If the Guides were not used, medical opinions would be more subjective, and perhaps arbitrary. It is no surprise, therefore, that most states either mandate, recommend, or frequently use the AMAGuides in Workers' compensation cases.» To date, every appellate court that has dealt with the AMAGuides has upheld its use and/or its constitutionality»; for additional information, see the following cases: Allen v Natrona County School District One, 811 p.2d 1 (Wy. 1991); Duran v Industrial Claim Appeals Office, 883 p.2d 477 (Colo. 1994); and Texas Workers’ Compensation Commission v Garcia, 893 S.W.2d 504 (Tex. 1995).

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