Hearings and Appeals
The Industrial Commission holds hearings on disputed claims issues.
The Bureau of Workers’ Compensation makes the initial decision in state fund claims. Sometimes the BWC refers an issue to the Industrial Commission for a hearing without making a decision. In self-insured employer claims, the self-insurer makes the initial decision.
Any party can appeal an unfavorable decision. For most matters, a District Hearing Officer (DHO) holds the initial hearing. The next hearing level, the Staff Hearing Officer, hears appeals from DHO orders. The final level of administrative hearings involves a discretionary appeal from the SHO to the Industrial Commission.
Note that strict time deadlines apply to filing appeals. If you miss the time limit for filing an appeal you will lose the right to appeal.