Right to Withdraw Consent to Settlement

Barkan Meizlish , May 19, 2015

Recently the Ohio Court of Appeals (9th District) determined that an injured worker was required to provide written notice to the employer, as well as administrator of workers’ compensation in order to withdraw consent to a settlement agreement. In Hart v. Ridge Tool Co. 2014-Ohio-5088 (2014), the employee filed two workers’ compensation claims seeking coverage for alleged conditions. Prior to the initial court date, the parties informed the court that they had reached a settlement agreement.

The parties informed the court of their intent to settle the case and the court entered judgment in both cases, without waiting the statutorily required 30 days before enforcing the settlement. Hart v. Ridge Tool Co., 9th Dist. Lorain No. 12CA010234, 2013-Ohio-1487, ¶ 7-8. The Court of Appeals determined that the trial court had prematurely entered judgment in violation of R.C. 4123.65, which provides that parties have 30 days after signing a written settlement agreement to withdraw from the consent, and the case was remanded. Id. After 30 days passed, the employer filed a motion to enforce the settlement agreement, and the trial court determined that the settlement agreement was final, and dismissed the case. Id. at 7.

The injured worker appealed, but the Court of Appeals held that the injured worker was required to provide written notice to the employer and workers’ compensation administrator to withdraw his consent. Therefore, by not putting his intent to withdraw consent in writing within 30 days, the trial court was well within its power to enforce the settlement agreement. Thus, it is crucial for you to be aware of the statutory rules when entering into a settlement agreement with your employer.

If you have any questions, you should immediately contact an attorney. For more information on the case, please reference the following site: http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/rod/docs/pdf/9/2014/2014-ohio-5088.pdf
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