In a recent 2-1 decision, the South Carolina Court of Appeals affirmed the workers’ compensataion commission’s position against former stripper, LeAndra Lewis’ claim for benefits because she was not considered an employee of Boom Boom Studio 54 in Columbia.
Lewis, who was 19-years-old when she was performing at the Columbia Club, was shot in the abdomen during a fight that occurred between two customers. The 2008 shooting left Lewis with serious injuries to her liver, intestines, pancreas, kidney and uterus.
During her stripping days, Lewis would normally work five nights a week, traveling between the Carolinas. However, the scarring resulting from her injuries has cut her stripping career short.
Various arguments that Lewis was not an employee support the Court’s decision, including that management never specified how she was supposed to dance for patrons and that the club had not supplied her with any equipment. In fact, “from the standpoint of both the Boom Boom Room and its customers, Lewis brought her own ‘equipment’ for her work,” wrote the court. The Court further noted that the club did not pay Lewis to perform and that it was actually Lewis who paid for the opportunity to dance and collect tips from customers.
Judge Paul Short, dissenting, argued that Lewis was an employee of the club because management had the power to fine or fire strippers who missed their turn in rotation, who left early, charged their own V.I.P. dance price, or broke any other rules.
Please call the experienced worker’ compensation attorneys of Reeves, Aiken & Hightower LLP. to have you case heard now! Our seasoned litigators have over 75 years combined trial experience. Our team of personal injury attorneys include former insurance defense lawyers, a former Registered Nurse (RN), and former criminal prosecutor. We can investigate all aspects of a serious accident and hold all parties accountable for your loss. Call us today and speak directly with one of our lawyers at 704-499-9000 or 877-374-5999 toll-free. We have offices in Charlotte and throughout South Carolina. We would be honored to have an opportunity to help you and your family get through this most difficult time in your lives. Hire the best worker’s compensation attorneys with whom you have the most confidence in!