BLUEFIELD — A settlement was reached in a case involving a coal miner and the company from which he previously received workers' compensation benefits.
"Having been advised of the settlement of this action by the representation of counsel, the court finds it unnecessary for further proceedings to be conducted herein," Senior U.S. District Judge David A. Faber wrote in the July 2 order.
Faber ordered the clerk to retire the case from the active docket. The terms of the settlement were not listed in the order.
Carl Ausborne filed a complaint in McDowell Circuit Court against Cottingham & Butler Claims Services Inc. It was later removed to federal court. The plaintiff attempted in March to have the case remanded, but it wasn't.
The plaintiff alleges he sustained a work-related right thigh varicose vein injury while working for MC Enterprises in September 2015 and filed a workers' compensation claim, which was approved. In July 2016, the defendant became the third-party claims administrator for the plaintiff's employer and it suspended temporary total disability benefits on the plaintiff's claim, according to the suit.
The plaintiff claims his benefits are rightfully due and owed to him and that the defendant engaged in a fraudulent scheme to deny him his benefits.
In February, Cottingham filed an answer to the complaint, arguing that the plaintiff's complaint failed to state a claim upon which relief could be granted and that his case is barred by the applicable statute of limitations.
"Persons or entities other than this Defendant were wholly or partially responsible for the damages sustained by plaintiff and, therefore, no claim upon which relief can be granted has been stated," the answer states.
Ausborne was seeking all reasonable sums due, attorney's fees and court costs. He was represented by Jerome JMcFadden of the Law Offices of Jerome McFadden in Princeton.
Cottingham was represented by Lee Murray Hall, Steven Wellman and Sarah Walling of Jenkins Fenstermaker.
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia case number 1:19-cv-00116