Newlon v. Teck American, Inc., 2015 MT 317 (Nov. 10, 2015) (Wheat, J.) (5-0, aff’d)
Issue: (1) Whether Teck and Newlon formed an enforceable contract; and (2) if so, whether Teck can assert the 60-month rule under § 39-71-704(1)(d) to avoid having to pay Newlon’s benefits.
Short Answer: (1) Yes; and (2) no.
Facts: Newlon worked for Teck as a miner from 1972 until the mine closed in 1993. Newlon was injured in several incidents over the years, including at least three separate injuries involving his left knee. Newlon had surgery on the knee in 1993 and 1996, but his symptoms and problems persisted.
Teck’s assistant manager, Moore, approached Newlon in 1996 about settling all of Newlon’s work comp claims.…