Joliet Office

60 North Chicago St.
Joliet, IL 60432


Tel: 312.277.3000
Fax: 312.277.3008
Springfield Office

One West Old State Capitol Plaza
Suite 801
Springfield, IL 62701

Tel: 217.801.9733
Fax: 312.277.3008
Chicago Office

901 W. Jackson Blvd.
Suite 301
Chicago, IL 60607

Tel: 312.277.3000
Fax: 312.277.3008

Case Name: January 2017 – Maldonado, Maria v Caraustar
Handling Attorney:
Joe Needham
Case No.:
16 IWCC 00327 / 16 L 50473
Date of Accident:
April 2007; October 2007; May 2008
Potential Exposure: Uncertain – bilateral upper extremity wrist and elbow, alleged surgical.
Arbitrator Findings: Case dismissal for want of prosecution, upheld on appeal.

 

We are happy to report the continued trend of better and more reasonable trial results from our IWCC hearing officers and for the IWCC defense bar, both procedurally and substantively, as outlined by recent Commission awards.

 

Case Summary & Background:

 

In Roman v Caraustar Petitioner claimed bilateral upper extremity repetitive trauma but refused to prosecute her cases. After roughly seven years of continuances over Respondent’s objection, the case was specially set for trial or for case dismissal. On the date of specially set trial, Petitioner was present with her attorney, and through her attorney again requested case continuance and refused to proceed to trial. Petitioner was given the option of proceeding to trial or being dismissed for want of prosecution. Petitioner elected DWP and later moved for reinstatement.

 

Legal/Claim Strategy:

 

In her hearing for reinstatement Petitioner was left with little argument for reinstatement. The Rules and a series of appellate decisions outline the bases for securing case reinstatement following dismissal for want of prosecution, including Petitioner’s burden to prove facts justifying case reinstatement by setting forth the reason the cause was dismissed, and the grounds relied upon for reinstatement. The Arbitrator must then apply standards of fairness and equity in his/her ruling and must consider the grounds relied on by Petitioner, the objections of Respondent and the precedents set forth in Commission decisions. Where Petitioner elected DWP as a means of circumventing Respondent’s right to trial, she was left without a compelling basis for case reinstatement and no capacity to establish the dismissal was unjust. Following circuit court confirmation of the denial of case reinstatement without further appeal, dismissal became final.

 

Significance:

 

Dismissals for failure to prosecute a claim are commonplace; refusals of reinstatement are less common. Understanding the standards to be met in seeking reinstatement and the defenses available may determine success for either party. Dismissals for failure to prosecute a claim are commonplace; refusals of reinstatement are less common. Understanding the standards to be met in seeking reinstatement and the defenses available may determine success for either party.

Defend your cases with a detailed accident investigation, a diligent claims handler, quality experts and skilled defense counsel. A truly objective IWCC Arbitrator will reach the right result.

 

Thank you for allowing us to share with you our latest successful trial result. If you have any additional questions or thoughts about this decision, please do not hesitate to contact the undersigned or the handling attorney, Joseph R. Needham.