Claims: Occupational Disease

Liberty Mutual Ins. Corp. v. Montana State Fund/Re Claim of Mitchell [12/23/08] 2008 MTWCC 54 Applying the rationale set forth in Fleming v. International Paper Co., 2008 MT 327, that “liability for and administration of a claim should correspond with the period in which the injurious exposure occurred,” this Court concludes that where a claimant testified that his heavy-labor job duties from August to October 2005 caused his back condition to worsen, and two physicians opined that the job duties during this period contributed to the low-back condition, the 2005 version of the WCA applies to the claim filed for this period of time. Although claimant had a similar claim against another insurer previously, this does not affect which statutory year applies to his present claim.
Cardwell v. UEF [04/28/06] 2006 MTWCC 20 Where Petitioner filed a Petition alleging an injury and later filed an Amended Petition alleging, in the alternative, an occupational disease, the Amended Petition was filed timely within the one year statute of limitation where all of the documentary evidence indicates that Petitioner neither knew nor should have known that he may be suffering from an occupational disease until Petitioner’s chiropractor stated in a deposition that Petitioner’s medical condition may be a “repetitive use injury, which happens over a period of time.”

Redmond v. Montana State Fund [04/14/05] 2005 MTWCC 20 A claim for an occupational disease encompasses any subsequent progression of the disease. Separate claims need not be filed as other parts of the body are affected by the disease.