Frair v. Sirloin Stockade, Inc.

Annotate this Case

Frair v. Sirloin Stockade, Inc.
1981 OK 117
635 P.2d 597
Case Number: 55529
Decided: 10/06/1981
Supreme Court of Oklahoma

 
JERRY FRAIR AND WORKERS' COMPENSATION COURT, RESPONDENTS,
v.
SIRLOIN STOCKADE, INC., AND TRAVELERS INSURANCE COMPANY, PETITIONERS.

Certiorari to the Court of Appeals, Division 2.

¶0 Certiorari is granted because the cause involves a novel question of law and the Court of Appeals, Divisions 1 and 2, have reached divergent results. Division 1, in two unpublished opinions, has held that it is error for the trial court to fail to make findings of fact concerning each injury scheduled on the Form 3. (Holly Creek Fryers v. Williams, No. 54,592, promulgated September 30, 1980, and Texas, Oklahoma Express v. Vaughn, No. 54,926, promulgated November 4, 1980). Division 2, in this case, found that it was not error.

CERTIORARI GRANTED; OPINION OF THE COURT OF APPEALS, DIVISION 2, ORDERED WITHDRAWN; AWARD OF WORKERS' COMPENSATION COURT SUSTAINED AND CAUSE REMANDED WITH DIRECTIONS TO MAKE SPECIFIC FINDINGS ON THE ENUMERATED BUT UNADJUDICATED INJURIES TO THE LEFT LEG, SHOULDER AND BACK.

Joe Wheeler, Wheeler, Parsons, Wheeler & Davis, Oklahoma City, for respondents.

Yvonne Sparger Nichols, Looney, Nichols, Johnson & Hayes, Oklahoma City, for petitioners.

HODGES, Justice.

[635 P.2d 598]

¶1 Although several questions were initially presented for review, the only issue presented by the petition for certiorari is whether the trial court erred because it failed to make specific findings concerning the left leg, shoulder, and back of the claimant which were alleged in his Form 3.

¶2 Before the adoption of Worker's Compensation Court Rule 19, par. 5,

¶3 Rule 19 requires that the litigants completely fill out the pre-trial stipulation forms. If they are not received, the matter is set for hearing with at least ten days' notice. After notice of the hearing is given, the party who failed to prepare a pre-trial stipulation may not call any witness or introduce any written medical reports unless the failure to file the pre-trial stipulation is excused by the presiding judge or trial judge. However, Forms 9, 10, 11 and 12 may be amended without obtaining the court's permission if they are filed five days prior to the hearing.

¶4 The intent of Rule 19 is to eliminate fragmented litigation of claims which arise from the same accident. The validity of the rule is premised on the elimination of prolonged and vexatious litigation, and the promotion of the prompt termination of litigation.

¶5 The purpose of any judicial proceeding is to afford the opportunity to each person to present evidence and arguments in a forum which provides [635 P.2d 599] fair and equal justice.

¶6 The Workers' Compensation Court must make specific findings of fact responsive to the issues and conclusions of law when an order is entered granting or denying an award.

¶7 CERTIORARI GRANTED; OPINION OF THE COURT OF APPEALS, DIVISION 2, ORDERED WITHDRAWN; AWARD OF WORKERS' COMPENSATION COURT SUSTAINED AND CAUSE REMANDED WITH DIRECTIONS TO MAKE SPECIFIC FINDINGS ON THE ENUMERATED BUT UNADJUDICATED INJURIES TO THE LEFT LEG, SHOULDER AND BACK.

¶8 IRWIN, C.J., BARNES, V.C.J., and LAVENDER, SIMMS, HARGRAVE and OPALA, JJ., concur.

Footnotes:

1 85 O.S.Supp 1979, Ch. 4, App. Rule 19 (effective September 15, 1979).

2 Oil Capitol Sheet Metal Works v. Robinson, 447 P.2d 438 (Okl. 1968); Oklahoma City Tent & Awning Co. v. Malson, 362 P.2d 971 (Okl. 1961); Dierks Lumber & Coal Co. v. Hagan, 189 Okl. 210, 114 P.2d 919 (1941).

3 The statute could afford the claimant three additional hearing dates over the next five years. See 85 O.S.Supp. 1978 § 43 .

4 Yuba Heat Transfer v. Wilson, 565 P.2d 674, 676 (Okl. 1977).

5 Flint Construction Co. v. Woods, 425 P.2d 995, 998 (Okl. 1967).