A subsidiary of Murray Energy Corp., faulted by federal officials for the Crandall Canyon mine cave-in that killed six miners last year, is fighting a worker's compensation claim filed by the family of one of the victims.
With his paycheck, coal miner Juan Carlos Payan was supporting his disabled father, his mother and two young sisters in Mexico, according to his family.
The parents want full benefits of about $2,400 a month for six years a total of $172,800. That's five times the amount offered by Genwal Resources Inc., a subsidiary of Ohio-based Murray Energy, and Rockwood Casualty Insurance Co.
The companies argued that Payan had two other siblings working in Utah to help support the family and that he wasn't the sole benefactor.
An administrative law judge for the Utah Labor Commission presided over a hearing on the issue Wednesday. Aurora Holley said her decision is two or three months away.
Payan, 22, was one of six miners entombed in the Crandall Canyon mine by a collapse on Aug. 6, 2007, that was so extensive it flattened an area half a mile underground, according to satellite radar images. Three other people died in a later collapse, during a failed attempt to dig the miners out.
Families of all eight of the other victims are receiving worker's compensation, according to Utah officials.