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Tire v. The Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission

Court of Appeals of Illinois, Fifth District, Workers' Compensation Commission Division

February 16, 2018

DOBBS TIRE & AUTO, Appellant,
v.
THE ILLINOIS WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMISSION et al. (Ted Adams, Appellee). PEGGY STOLTE, Appellant,
v.
THE ILLINOIS WORKERS' COMPENSATION COMMISSION et al. (St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital, Appellee).

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of St. Clair County. No. 14-MR-347 Appeal No. 5-16-0342WC Honorable Robert P. LeChien, Judge, presiding.

         Appeal from the Circuit Court of Fayette County. No. 16-MR-22 Appeal No. 5-16-0297WC Honorable J. Marc Kelly, Judge, presiding.

          Attorneys for Appellants Brad A. Elward, Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen, P.C., 300 Hamilton Boulevard, P.O. Box 6199, Peoria, IL 61601-6199; Toney J. Tomaso, Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen, 102 East Main Street, Suite 300, Urbana, IL 61801 (attorneys for Dobbs Tire & Auto); Eric W. Kirkpatrick, Kirkpatrick Law Offices, P.C., #3 Executive Woods Court, Suite 100, Belleville, IL 62226 (attorney for Peggy Stolte)

          Attorneys for Appellees Eric W. Kirkpatrick, Kirkpatrick Law Offices, P.C., #3 Executive Woods Court, Suite 100, Belleville, IL 62226 (attorney for Ted Adams); Brad A. Elward, Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen, P.C., 300 Hamilton Boulevard, P.O. Box 6199, Peoria, IL 61601-6199; John D. Flodstrom, Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen, 102 East Main Street, Suite 300, P.O. Box 129, Urbana, IL 61801 (attorneys for St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital)

          JUSTICE MOORE delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion. Presiding Justice Holdridge and Justices Hoffman, Hudson, and Harris concurred in the judgment and opinion.

          OPINION

          MOORE JUSTICE

         ¶ 1 These appeals were consolidated for purposes of oral argument and opinion by this court's own motion. In the first appeal, the claimant, Peggy Stolte, appeals the June 23, 2016, order of the circuit court of Fayette County that denied her motion for enforcement of judgment pursuant to section 19(g) of the Workers' Compensation Act (Act) (820 ILCS 305/19(g) (West 2014)) and interest on her workers' compensation award, pursuant to section 2-1303 of the Code of Civil Procedure (Code) (735 ILCS 5/2-1303 (West 2014)). In the second appeal, the employer, Dobbs Tire & Auto, appeals the June 16, 2016, judgment of the circuit court of St. Clair County that awarded the claimant, Ted Adams, $72, 178.83 in postjudgment interest, pursuant to section 2-1303 of the Code (id.), after the claimant filed a pleading, pursuant to section 19(g) of the Act (820 ILCS 305/19(g) (West 2014)), for the sole purpose of requesting the interest award. For the reasons that follow, we affirm the order entered by the circuit court of Fayette County in the appeal brought by Peggy Stolte, and we reverse the judgment entered by the circuit court of St. Clair County in the Dobbs Tire & Auto appeal.

         ¶ 2 FACTS

         ¶ 3 1. Stolte Appeal

         ¶ 4 On March 9, 2016, the claimant filed, in the circuit court of Fayette County, a pleading titled "Motion For Enforcement Of Judgment And Interest At 9% Per Annum, On Workers' Compensation Arbitration Decision And Commission Decision And Pursuant to 820 ILCS 305/19(g)" (motion). According to the motion, the arbitrator issued a decision on March 21, 2013, in favor of the claimant and against the employer, St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital, awarding the claimant permanent partial disability in the amount of $233.29 per week for 125 weeks, totaling $29, 161.25. The employer appealed the award to the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission (Commission), which confirmed the award. The employer appealed to the circuit court of Fayette County, which also confirmed the award, and then to this court, which affirmed. See St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital v. Illinois Workers' Compensation Comm'n, 2015 IL App (5th) 140447WC-U.

         ¶ 5 The claimant's motion averred that the employer, when it paid the workers' compensation award, incorrectly calculated interest on the award by applying "only the .11 interest rate" provided by section 19(n) of the Act (820 ILCS 305/19(n) (West 2014)). The claimant asserted that once the circuit court ruled and confirmed the award, interest was due on the award at the rate of 9%, pursuant to section 2-1303 of the Code. 735 ILCS 5/2-1303 (West 2014).

         ¶ 6 On April 16, 2016, the employer filed a motion to dismiss, stating that it had paid the award in full on January 6, 2016, including interest in the amount of 0.11% pursuant to section 19(n) of the Act. 820 ILCS 305/19(n) (West 2014). The employer requested that the circuit court dismiss the claimant's motion, arguing that section 2-1303 of the Code (735 ILCS 5/2-1303 (West 2014)) does not apply because the award had not been reduced to judgment at the time the award was paid. After briefing and oral argument, the circuit court entered an order on June 23, 2016, granting the employer's motion to dismiss. On July 11, 2016, the claimant filed a notice of appeal.

         ¶ 7 2. Dobbs Tire & Auto Appeal

         ¶ 8 On September 2, 2014, the claimant filed, in the circuit court of St. Clair County, a pleading titled "Motion For Enforcement Of Judgment And Interest On Workers' Compensation Commission Decision And Pursuant to 820 ILCS 305/19(g)" (motion). According to the motion, the arbitrator issued a decision on January 19, 2010, in favor of the claimant and against the employer, awarding the claimant medical expenses in the amount of $239, 549.16 and permanent total disability in the amount of $847.10 per week. The employer appealed the award to the Commission, which modified the medical expense award to $237, 025.53 but otherwise confirmed the award. The employer appealed to the circuit court of St. ...


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