2014 Ohio Workers’ Compensation News

2014 Ohio Workers’ Compensation News

Administrative

December, 2014

  • See the 2015 rates for workers’ compensation awards on our rates page.

Administrative

December, 2014

  • The BWC’s Board of Directors adopted O.A.C. 4123-6-21.6, which provides for first fill of outpatient medications.  This rule, expected to take effect on February 1, 2015, permits the BWC to approve payment for prescription medication for certain drugs (listed in an appendix to the rule) before the administrator makes the initial determination whether to allow the claim.  The rule also permits the BWC to provide first fill reimbursement for prescription medication not included in the appendix “in cases of medical necessity supported by clinical documentation and evidence of need.” Under this plan, the BWC will pay for no more than ten days worth of prescription medication, with no refills permitted.

Case

November, 2014

  • The Supreme Court ruled that workers injured while traveling must satisfy the course of, and arising out of, test to receive workers’ compensation benefits for their injury and rejected a test applied by other jurisdictions known as the dual purpose doctrine.   Read more >>

Administrative

October, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission has revised form IC-13, the Request for Corrected Order. Use form IC-13 if you want “to request a correction of a clerical or typographical error contained in an Industrial Commission order.”

Administrative

September, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission adopted new policies for its Hearing Officer Manual. The new policies are: Memo I.3 (Last Payment of Compensation – Date on Face of Warrant or Date of Last Transfer), Memo O.1 (Settlements – Finality, Abatement, and Withdrawal), and Memo Q.1 (Adjustments in Average or Full Weekly Wage). The new policies became effective on September 8, 2014.

Administrative

August, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission will hold a hearing on Monday, September 29, 2014 to consider an amendment to the permanent total rule which would “provide a procedure by which parties can request a new start date or new allocation” of a permanent total award granted by a tentative order. The proposed amendment would permit a party to file a request in writing, within 30 days of receipt of the tentative order, to change the start date or allocation of a permanent total award granted through a tentative order, without objecting to the award of permanent total.

Legislative

July, 2014

  • H.B. 493, the BWC Budget Bill, amended provisions of the workers’ compensation law. Read more >>

Administrative

July, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission revised Hearing Officer Manual Memo I.5, “Processing Compensation and Medical Benefits Issues in Claims when an Original Allowance or Additional Allowance Issue is in Court.” The policy provides a chart listing different issues which may arise in a claim which states whether the Commission can process the issue while the claim is pending in court. You can find the Hearing Officer Manual on the Commission’s website.

Legislative

June, 2014

  • The Ohio Senate passed Senate Bill 252, which would amend R.C. 4123.01 to provide workers’ compensation benefits to police officers, fire fighters and emergency medical workers who suffer post-traumatic stress disorder (“PTSD”) due to their employment. The law currently prohibits workers’ compensation coverage for any psychiatric claim (including PTSD) unless the psychiatric claim arose from an allowed physical injury or occupational disease. The bill is now pending in the Ohio House of Representatives.

Administrative

May, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission is considering an amendment to the permanent total rule, Ohio Administrative Code 4121-3-34. The proposed amendment would only affect the processing of tentative permanent total orders in O.A.C. 4121-3-34(6)(a)(1). You can see the proposed new amendments on the Commission’s website.

Administrative

April, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission updated the following policies in the Hearing Officer Manual.
    1. Memo G.5: Guidelines for Permanent Total Disability Tentative Grant Orders (new)
    2. Memo O.3: Staff Hearing Officers Review of Settlements (revised)
    3. Memo R.7: Use of Audiovisual Evidence (revised)
  • The Commission also adopted Telephone Hearing Request Guidelines. The new policies became effective April 4, 2014.

Administrative

March, 2014

  • The BWC corrected the 2013 statewide average weekly wage calculation, which has slightly changed the rates for 2013 given on the back cover. Our rates page has the updated rates.

Administrative

February, 2014

  • The BWC and Industrial Commission have adopted a new wage loss rule, O.A.C. 4125-1-01, effective February 13, 2014. Read our summary of the new rule.

Administrative

January, 2014

  • The Industrial Commission scheduled a hearing on January 3, 2014, to consider amendments to O.A.C. 4125-1-01 (wage loss) and O.A.C. 4125-1-02 (electronic submission and acceptance of documents). The proposed change to O.A.C. 4125-1-02 adds Revised Code Chapter 4125 to a listing of situations where electronic signatures can be used when a signature is required.

Administrative

January, 2014

  • See the 2014 rates for workers’ compensation awards on our rates page.