When James Allen and his Colorado Workers’ Compensation Attorney showed up to Court to prove that he had suffered a work injury, neither the employer nor its insurance carrier showed up. However the Notice of Hearing had not only the claimant’s address on it but the insurance company’s address as well.
The Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) ruled in the injured Colorado worker’s favor, and awarded medical benefits. The insurance company appealed and argued that the notice of hearing, while having been sent to the insurance company was on the Notice of Hearing – the employer was not.
The Industrial Claims Appeals Panel (ICAO) remanded the case on the grounds that the employer’s due process rights required that the Notice of Hearing include the employer:
Section 8-43-211(1) C.R.S., provides that at least thirty days prior to any hearing, the Office of Administrative Courts in the Department of Personnel shall send written notice to all parties by regular or electronic mail or by facsimile and that the notice shall give the time, date, and place of the hearing. Moreover, the Office of Administrative Courts has promulgated a procedural rule regarding notice of hearings. See Office of Administrative Courts’ Rule of Procedure (OACRP) 11. Additionally, §8-43-211(2)(b), C.R.S., requires that a request for hearing, “shall be mailed to all parties at the time they are filed with the office of administrative courts.” The panel has previously held that the statue and rule contemplate that the employer is a party in interest and entitled to separate notice of hearing. See Nwanorim v. Prime Hospitality, W.C. No. 4-819-936 (November 8, 2010); Lopez v. UB Code W.C. No. 4-813-382 (October 22, 2010); Ford v. Katzon Brothers, W.C. No. 4-790-320 (November 12, 2009).
As always, how this or any other case we discuss in this blog would apply to your case depends on many more factors. We urge you to call us to see if you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ Compensation is difficult, confusing, and very complex. Kaplan Morrell has helped thousands of injured workers since 1997 get the benefits they deserve. Contact our Denver or Greeley Workers’ Compensation Offices or call us at (866) 356-9898 for your FREE CONSULTATION.
Cite: James Allen v. US Engineeirng Company, WC No. 4-945-671 (12/8/2014)