The California Division of Workers’ Compensation needs more time to finish regulations required under the 2012 SB 863 reforms.
That appears to be the bottom line to be gleaned from a DWC newline release of June 12, 2013 (see link below).
In late 2012 the DWC had issued emergency regulations on the following topics:
-Independent Medical Review (IMR)
-Independent Bill Review (IBR)
-supplemental job displacement vouchers
The QME regs, interpreter regs and voucher regs seem to be moving toward conclusion, as they have had multiple comment periods. But it is not clear that the DWC will meet the July 1 deadline .
So the DWC has now issued notices of emergency readoptions and requests for readoption for all six emergency regulations. essentially this extends the time to come up with final regs.
This goes to the California Office of Administrative Law (OAL), which will clearly approve.
The burden of formulating appropriate rules is a heavy one, and it’s probably a plus that the DWC is taking a deliberative approach, with multiple comment periods.
Yes, it is true that not having final regs means that parties may have to face uncertainty as to how some procedures will ultimately be handled.
But I’d rather see them get it right than rush the process.
Stay tuned. In the next few days I’ll be covering this week’s meeting of the California Commission of Health, Safety and Workers’ Compensation (CHSWC).
Category: Understanding the CA WC system