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CATHERINE HEFFERNAN vs.SAFETY NATIONAL CASUALTY CORP.

Workers' Compensation Court of the State of Montana

Did DLI have cause in ordering Claimant to attend a panel IME?

IN THE WORKERS’ COMPENSATION COURT OF THE STATE OF MONTANA 2017 MTWCC 18, WCC No. 2017-4119. CATHERINE HEFFERNAN vs.SAFETY NATIONAL CASUALTY CORP.

Summary: Claimant appeals an Amended Order Directing Medical Examination, in which the DLI ordered her to attend a panel IME. Claimant argues that the DLI erred because: (1) it declined her request to allow her to make an audio recording of the history portion of her examination; (2) it did not require the IME provider to send a copy of its report directly to her, despite the provider’s policy not to do so being in violation of § 39- 71-605(2), MCA; and (3) it directed her to attend a panel IME, which she contends is three IMEs, without good cause for “multiple” IMEs.

Held: The Amended Order Directing Medical Examination is affirmed in part and modified in part. The DLI correctly determined that claimant did not have good cause to make an audio recording of the history portion of her examination. The DLI also correctly determined that good cause exists for a panel IME, which is not “multiple” IMEs. However, Claimant is correct that she has a statutory right to a copy of the IME report directly from the IME provider. Thus, the DLI’s order is modified to require the IME provider to provide its report directly to Claimant at the same time it provides it to the Insurer. The Insurer is ordered to file a written declaration from the IME provider that the provider will provide its report directly to Claimant.

Judgment: IT IS ORDERED that Safety National shall file with this Court a written declaration from WellCare stating it will provide its report to Heffernan at the same time it provides it to Safety National. Safety National shall filed the declaration on or before Wednesday, November 8, 2017. If Safety National files the declaration, the panel IME may proceed. If WellCare does not agree to provide its report directly to Heffernan, or if Safety National does not file WellCare’s declaration by this deadline, then the IME may not proceed.

READ FULL DOCUMENT AT ORIGNAL SOURCE: http://wcc.dli.mt.gov/h/Heffernan_2017MTWCC18.pdf