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.

Kutzler v. Montana State Fund

Court of Workers Compensation of Montana

January 26, 2005

MICHELLE (WALKER) KUTZLER Petitioner
v.
MONTANA STATE FUND Respondent/Insurer.

          Submitted: January 24, 2005

          ORDER AND JUDGMENT DISMISSING PETITION

          MIKE MCCARTER JUDGE

         Summary: The petitioner filed a petition two days prior to the running of the two-year statute of limitations, § 39-71-2905(2), MCA (2001), but without having either requested or completed mediation. Respondent moves to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction but requests that dismissal be with prejudice since the two-year statute of limitations expired after the filing of the faulty petition but before the petitioner requested mediation.

         Held: The Court lacks jurisdiction over the petition since mediation has not been completed. Because it lacks jurisdiction over the petition, it cannot consider the merits of a statute of limitations defense, therefore dismissal is without prejudice.

         Topics:

Jurisdiction: Mediation. Workers' Compensation Court lacks jurisdiction over a petition for workers' compensation benefits where the parties have not completed mandatory mediation. Preston v. Transportation Ins. Co., 2004 MT 339, §§ 39-71-2905 and -2408(1), MCA (2001).
Jurisdiction: Mediation. While in some past cases the Workers' Compensation Court has simply stayed proceedings where mediation is incomplete, henceforth all petitions where mandatory mediation has not been completed will be dismissed.
Constitutions, Statutes, Rules, and Regulations: Montana Code Annotated: § 39-71-2905, MCA (2001). Workers' Compensation Court lacks jurisdiction over a petition for workers' compensation benefits where the parties have not completed mandatory mediation.
Jurisdiction: Dismissal. Where a court lacks jurisdiction over a petition, it must dismiss the petition on that basis and cannot consider other possible defenses raised by the respondent.

         ¶1 Respondent Montana State Fund (State Fund) moves to dismiss the Petition for Hearing for lack of jurisdiction on account of the petitioner's (claimant) failure to mediate her claim prior to filing her petition.

         Factual Background

         ¶2 The petition herein was filed October 8, 2004. It alleges that the claimant suffered an industrial injury on September 24, 2002; that she filed a claim for compensation with the State Fund; and that the State Fund denied her claim for compensation on October 10, 2002.

         ¶3 In its response to the petition, the State Fund alleged that the claimant had not mediated her claim and that this Court therefore lacked jurisdiction over the petition. It subsequently filed a Motion to Dismiss and Brief in Support based on lack of jurisdiction. The motion was supported by an Affidavit of Cindy Hawkins, a paralegal for the State Fund, authenticating copies of various attached documents, including the October 10, 2002 letter denying the claim. Also attached was a request for mediation made by the claimant on November 18, 2004 - more than a month after the filing of the ...


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.