Mullins Coal Company, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, United States Department of Labor

PETITIONER: Mullins Coal Company, Inc.
RESPONDENT: Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, United States Department of Labor
LOCATION: Basic, Incorporated

DOCKET NO.: 86-327
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1987-1988)
LOWER COURT:

CITATION: 484 US 135 (1987)
ARGUED: Oct 14, 1987
DECIDED: Dec 14, 1987

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Mullins Coal Company, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, United States Department of Labor

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - October 14, 1987 in Mullins Coal Company, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, United States Department of Labor

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - December 14, 1987 in Mullins Coal Company, Inc. v. Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, United States Department of Labor

William H. Rehnquist:

I have the opinions of the Court to announce in three cases, and the first of this, 86-32, Mullins Coal Company versus The Director of the Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, we review a judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit regarding the burden of proof that the invocation stage of a Black Lung Benefits claim.

For the reasons stated in an opinion written by Justice Stevens for the Court, we agree with the Secretary of Labor and hold that a single item of qualifying evidence is not always sufficient to invoke the presumption rather a claimant must establish at least one of the five qualifying facts by a preponderance of the evidence.

Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals.

Justice Marshall has filed a dissenting opinion in which Justice Brennan joined.