The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation handles the administrative functions of the Ohio workers’ compensation system. The BWC has limited decision making powers, mainly related to the initial allowance of a claim. The BWC handles the processing of claims and the payment of money. An administrator, appointed by the Governor, heads the BWC.
The Industrial Commission handles the majority of the decision-making functions in the workers’ compensation system. The Industrial Commission makes decisions about contested issues.
The Industrial Commission has three levels of decision-making: District Hearing Officers (DHO), Staff Hearing Officers (SHO), and a three member board called the Industrial Commission. The three-member Industrial Commission also sets policy for the Commission.
Any party unsatisfied with a decision can appeal. Appeals from a DHO go to an SHO. Appeals from an SHO go to the three-member Industrial Commission, but the three-member Commission has discretion whether to take such appeals and hears very few appeals.