Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Kemp v. Montana Contractor Compensation Fund

Court of Workers Compensation of Montana

August 20, 1998

ROBERT KEMP Petitioner
v.
MONTANA CONTRACTOR COMPENSATION FUND Respondent/Insurer for SLETTEN CONSTRUCTION COMPANY Employer.,

          Submitted: July 16, 1998

          ORDER LIMITING ISSUES

          MIKE McCARTER, JUDGE

         Summary: Insurer sought order that litigation over implementation of rehabilitation plan proposed by claimant was premature because threshold question existed regarding whether claimant suffered a wage loss entitling him to rehabilitation benefits.

         Held: Section 39-71-1006, MCA (1995) requires actual wage loss as a result of an injury as a prerequisite to entitlement to rehabilitation benefits. If a wage loss exists, the section requires development of a rehabilitation plan and approval or disapproval by the insurer. While the Court ultimately has jurisdiction to resolve a dispute over a rehabilitation plan, or to compel the insurer to follow statutory procedures relating to development of a plan, those questions are properly deferred until resolution of the threshold question, whether claimant has a wage loss. Request that Court approve a specific plan is dismissed as premature.

         Topics:

Constitutions, Statutes, Regulations and Rules: Montana Code: section 39-71-1006, MCA (1995). Section 39-71-1006, MCA (1995) requires actual wage loss as a result of an injury as a prerequisite to entitlement to rehabilitation benefits. If a wage loss exists, the section requires development of a rehabilitation plan and approval or disapproval by the insurer. While the Court ultimately has jurisdiction to resolve a dispute over a rehabilitation plan, or to compel the insurer to follow statutory procedures relating to development of a plan, those questions are properly deferred until resolution of the threshold question, whether claimant has a wage loss. Request that Court approve a specific plan is dismissed as premature.
Benefits: Rehabilitation Benefits. Section 39-71-1006, MCA (1995) requires actual wage loss as a result of an injury as a prerequisite to entitlement to rehabilitation benefits. If a wage loss exists, the section requires development of a rehabilitation plan and approval or disapproval by the insurer. While the Court ultimately has jurisdiction to resolve a dispute over a rehabilitation plan, or to compel the insurer to follow statutory procedures relating to development of a plan, those questions are properly deferred until resolution of the threshold question, whether claimant has a wage loss. Request that Court approve a specific plan is dismissed as premature.

         ¶1 The matter before the Court is the respondent insurer's Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Jurisdiction (June 23, 1998). The motion seeks dismissal of claimant's request for rehabilitation benefits on the ground that the request is premature.

         ¶2 Claimant was injured on October 19, 1995, therefore the 1995 version of the Workers' Compensation Act applies in determining his entitlement to benefits, Buckman v. Montana Deaconess Hospital, 224 Mont. 318, 321, 730 P.2d 380, 382 (1986). Section 39-71-1006, MCA (1995), governs rehabilitation benefits, providing as follows:

39-71-1006. Rehabilitation benefits. (1) A disabled worker as defined in 39-71-1011 is eligible for rehabilitation benefits if:
(a) the worker has an actual wage loss as a result of the injury;
(b) a rehabilitation provider, as designated by the insurer, certifies that the injured worker has reasonable vocational goals and reemployment opportunity and will have a reasonable reduction in the worker's actual wage loss with rehabilitation; and
(c) a rehabilitation plan agreed upon by the injured worker and the insurer is filed with the department. The plan must take into consideration the worker's age, education, training, work history, residual physical capacities, and vocational interests. The plan must specify a beginning and completion date. If the plan calls for the expenditure of funds under 39-71-1004, the department shall authorize the department of public health and human services to use the funds.
(2)After filing the rehabilitation plan with the department, the disabled worker is entitled to receive biweekly compensation benefits at the injured worker's temporary total disability rate. The benefits must be paid for the period specified in the rehabilitation plan, not to exceed 104 weeks. The rehabilitation plan must be completed within 26 weeks of the completion date specified in the plan. Rehabilitation benefits must be paid biweekly while the worker is satisfactorily progressing in ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.