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State v. Cue

Court of Appeals of Oregon

December 31, 2014

STATE OF OREGON, acting by and through the Oregon Health Authority, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
Lynda S. CUE, Defendant-Respondent

Submitted September 9, 2014

13CV03100. Jackson County Circuit Court. Benjamin M. Bloom, Judge.

Ellen F. Rosenblum, Attorney General, Anna M. Joyce, Solicitor General, and Cecil A. Reniche-Smith, Senior Assistant Attorney General, filed the briefs for appellant.

Robert W. Good filed the brief for respondent.

Before Sercombe, Presiding Judge, and Hadlock, Judge, and Tookey, Judge.

OPINION

[268 Or.App. 351] TOOKEY, J.

Plaintiff, the State of Oregon by and through the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), brought a claim against the estate of Deane Preston Cloud to recover $666,187.40 for care and services rendered to Cloud by the Oregon State Hospital before his death. Defendant, the personal representative of Cloud's estate, disallowed OHA's claim as untimely. See ORS 115.005(2) (setting forth time limitations for presenting claims against the estate of a decedent). OHA initiated this action against defendant, arguing that its claim qualified for an exception to the time limitation under ORS 115.005(3). Defendant moved for summary judgment, arguing that OHA's claim did not satisfy one of the conditions of the exception--that the claim must

Page 99

be " presented by a person who did not receive a notice under ORS 115.003[.]" ORS 115.005(3)(b). The trial court granted defendant's motion for summary judgment and dismissed OHA's complaint with prejudice. We conclude that the trial court erred when it granted summary judgment in favor of defendant for the reason that OHA had failed to satisfy the condition of ORS 115.005(3)(b). Accordingly, we reverse and remand.

For clarity, we begin with an overview of the procedures and statutes relevant to our consideration of this case. Generally, when a person dies and there is a will that has been proved, upon the filing of a petition, the probate court will appoint a personal representative to administer the decedent's estate. ORS 113.085. The personal representative's responsibilities include, among other things, sending specified information to certain persons who might have an interest in the probate proceedings and administration of the decedent's will. Two statutes that set forth those duties, ORS 113.145 and ORS 115.003, are at issue in this case.

ORS 113.145 sets forth the personal representative's responsibility to, among other things, send specific information to certain persons who might have an interest in the estate. First, upon appointment, the personal representative must " deliver or mail to the devisees, heirs and the persons described in ORS 113.035(8) and (9) who were required to [268 Or.App. 352] be named in the petition for appointment of a personal representative," [1] information that includes:

" (a) The title of the court in which the estate proceeding is pending and the clerk's file number;
" (b) The name of the decedent and the place and date of the death of the decedent;
" c) Whether or not a will of the decedent has been admitted to probate;
" (d) The name and address of the personal representative and the attorney of the personal representative;
" (e) The date of the appointment of the personal representative;
" (f) A statement advising the devisee, heir or other interested person that the rights of the devisee, heir or other interested person may be affected by the proceeding and that additional information may be obtained from the records of the court, the personal representative or the attorney for the personal representative;
" (g) If information under this section is required to be delivered or mailed to a person described in ORS 113.035 (8), a statement that the rights of the person in the estate may be barred unless the person proceeds as provided in ORS 113.075 within ...

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