Jurisdiction: Estoppel

Bustell v. Ins. Co. Of PA [5/15/02] 2002 MTWCC 26 Where an insurer files a first report on behalf of a catastrophically injured claimant, does so based solely on information provided by its insureds, and notifies the claimant that her remedies are in Montana, and where the claimant in reliance of the insurer's representations hires a Montana lawyer and pursues her claim in Montana, and also accepts third-party monies which may jeopardize her ability to pursue her claim in the state the insurer later contends is the proper forum, the insurer is estopped from asserting that the claim should have been pursued in another state.
Bustell v. Ins. Co. Of PA [5/15/02] 2002 MTWCC 26 The Montana Workers' Compensation Court has jurisdiction over subject matter in workers' compensation matters which involve Montana residents working for employers doing business in Montana. Where the employer was doing business in Montana, and does not contest in personam jurisdiction, the Court has both subject matter and personal jurisdiction over a claim involving a truck driver who resides in and is based in Montana. Where the employer and its insurer invoke Montana as the proper forum for the claim, they may be estopped from later asserting that the claim should have been pursued in a different state.
Maggs v. State Compensation Ins. Fund [05/16/95] 1995 MTWCC 36 Under section 39-71-601(2), MCA (1989), the Department of Labor and Industry is the exclusive forum for presentment of claimant’s argument that the insurer is estopped from relying on the one-year statute of limitations for claim filing. While the Workers’ Compensation Court may judicially review the Department’s determination, it lacks jurisdiction to conduct a de novo hearing into claimant’s argument that the insurer is estopped where his supervisor allegedly threatened him with termination if he filed a workers’ compensation claim.