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Cobb v. Lafayette Parish School Board

Court of Appeals of Louisiana, Third Circuit

April 3, 2019

CATHERINE COBB
v.
LAFAYETTE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD, ET AL.

          APPEAL FROM THE OFFICE OF WORKERS' COMPENSATION - # 4 PARISH OF LAFAYETTE, NO. 01-03123 SHARON MORROW, WORKERS COMPENSATION JUDGE

          Michael B. Miller Miller & Associates COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT: Catherine Cobb

          L. Lane Roy Brown Sims COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT-APPELLEE: Lafayette Parish School Board

          Catherine M. Landry Mandy A. Simon Preis, PLC COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT-APPELLEE: Lafayette Parish School Board

          Court composed of John D. Saunders, Van H. Kyzar, and Candyce G. Perret, Judges.

          CANDYCE G. PERRET JUDGE

         On July 5, 2018, the Workers' Compensation Judge (WCJ) signed an ex parte order granting defendant's, Lafayette Parish School Board's (LPSB), Motion for Satisfaction of Judgments. Plaintiff, Catherine Cobb, appeals this judgment alleging as her sole assignment of error that the WCJ "erred in signing the satisfaction of judgment[s] without a hearing as required by [La.Code Civ.P.] art. 963." For the following reasons, we reverse and remand.

         FACTS:

         The underlying facts of this case were discussed previously in Cobb v. Lafayette Parish School Board, 16-990, p. 1-2 (La.App. 3 Cir. 5/17/17), 220 So.3d 825, 826-827 writ denied, 17-1481 (La. 11/13/17), 230 So.3d 209 as follows:

On May 8, 2001, Catherine Cobb filed a disputed claim for compensation alleging she was injured in September 2000, during the course and scope of her employment with the Lafayette Parish School Board (LPSB). On July 20, 2005, the parties stipulated that Ms. Cobb was entitled to temporary total disability benefits. LPSB then terminated these benefits on August 30, 2006. However, it did not file a motion seeking to modify Ms. Cobb's benefits until May 30, 2008.
On August 31, 2009, the Office of Workers' Compensation (OWC) rendered judgment in favor of Ms. Cobb, awarding indemnity benefits in the amount of $195.25 payable from September 12, 2000 through May 30, 2008, as well as $3, 000.00 in penalties, which was 24% of unpaid benefits from August 31, 2006 through May 30, 2008. Ms. Cobb was also awarded $10, 000.00 in attorney fees, $1, 135.53 in costs, and legal interest. No other benefits were awarded.
Ms. Cobb appealed the August 31, 2009 judgment to the extent it failed to award her with any other benefits, and LPSB appealed the award of penalties and attorney fees. The August 31, 2009 judgment was affirmed in all respects by this court on November 3, 2010. Cobb v. Lafayette Parish School Bd., 10-430 (La.App. 3 Cir. 11/3/10), 49 So.3d 597, writ denied, 10-2692 (La. 1/28/11), 56 So.3d 958.
On July 7, 2010, Ms. Cobb filed a motion seeking additional penalties and attorney fees for LPSB's failure to pay the August 31, 2009 judgment. The workers' compensation judge granted Ms. Cobb's motion and awarded her $3, 000 in penalties and $2, 500 in attorney fees pursuant to a judgment dated March 27, 2012.
Ms. Cobb filed another motion seeking penalties and attorney fees on October 12, 2012, alleging LPSB failed to pay the March 27, 2012 judgment. She then filed an amended motion on December 14, 2012, additionally alleging that LPSB failed to pay certain medical bills incurred by Ms. Cobb, and therefore, that she was entitled to ...

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