32.0639 Costs in proceedings brought or continued without reasonable cause.

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If the court having jurisdiction of proceedings in respect to any claim or compensation order determines that the proceedings in respect to such claim or order have been instituted or continued without reasonable ground, the costs of such proceedings shall be assessed against the party who has so instituted or continued such proceedings.

History: 1967, PL 10-15.

Case Note:

As used in this section, “costs” does not include fees and/or penalties inferentially, in re Westerlund v. Scanlan, 4 ASR 998 (1975).

Fees and costs reasonably incurred in combating appeal by employer from compensation award would be assessed against employer where, without reason, employer did not follow this chapter’s provisions for notice by employer that he controverted claim, or provisions for judicial review of an award, appeal was too late and under the wrong law, three continuancies were granted because employer’s attorney was either off the island or failed to appear and offered no explanation for failure, and employer’s attorney appeared at the hearing, objected to the hearing and then left for other commitments”. In re Westerlund v. Scanlan, 4 ASR 998 (1975).

A request for costs is properly denied in a negligence suit sounding in tort because it is not a proceeding “in respect to any claim or compensation order.” A.S.C.A. § 32.0639. Etimani v. Samoa Packing Co., 19 A.S.R.2d 1 (1991).