Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 6. Claims for Benefits

Insurer To Accept Or Deny Claim Within 30 Days Of Receipt -- Notice Of Benefits And Entitlements To Claimants -- Notice Of Denial -- Notice Of Reopening -- Notice To Employer -- Employer's Right To Loss Information

39-71-606. Insurer to accept or deny claim within 30 days of receipt -- notice of benefits and entitlements to claimants -- notice of denial -- notice of reopening -- notice to employer -- employer's right to loss information. (1) Each insurer under any plan for the payment of workers' compensation benefits shall, within 30 days of receipt of a claim for compensation signed by the claimant or the claimant's representative, either accept or deny the claim and, if denied, shall inform the claimant and the department in writing of the denial.

(2) (a) The department shall make available to insurers for distribution to claimants sufficient copies of a document describing current benefits and entitlements available under Title 39, chapter 71. On receipt of a claim, each insurer shall promptly notify the claimant in writing of potential benefits and entitlements available by providing the claimant a copy of the document prepared by the department.

(b) The department may provide information to claimants regarding nonstatutory programs or benefits offered to injured workers or the families of injured workers by a nonprofit organization. The department may not provide the contact information of an injured worker to such an organization without the express consent of the injured worker.

(3) Each insurer under plan No. 2 or No. 3 for the payment of workers' compensation benefits shall notify the employer of the reopening of the claim within 14 days after the reopening of a claim for the purpose of paying compensation benefits.

(4) (a) When requested by an employer that an insurer currently insures or has insured in the immediately preceding 5 years or when requested by the employer's designated insurance producer, an insurer shall provide the loss information listed in subsection (4)(b) within 10 days of the request.

(b) Loss information provided under this subsection (4) must include for the period requested:

(i) all date of injury or occupational disease data for the employer's claims;

(ii) payment data on the employer's closed claims; and

(iii) payment data and loss reserve amounts on the employer's open claims, including all compensation benefits that are ongoing and are being charged against that employer's account.

(c) The information provided under this subsection (4) is confidential insurance information. The information may be used by the employer for internal management purposes or for procuring insurance products but may not be disclosed for any other purpose without the express written consent of the insurer.

(5) Failure of an insurer to comply with the time limitations required in subsections (1) and (3) does not constitute an acceptance of a claim as a matter of law. However, an insurer who fails to comply with 39-71-608 or subsections (1) and (3) of this section may be assessed a penalty under 39-71-2907 if a claim is determined to be compensable by the workers' compensation court.

History: En. Sec. 1, Ch. 477, L. 1973; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 173, L. 1974; R.C.M. 1947, 92-615(part); amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 122, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 64, Ch. 613, L. 1989; amd. Sec. 22, Ch. 619, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 13, Ch. 630, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 11, Ch. 276, L. 1997; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 267, L. 2015; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 79, L. 2021.