Jeff V. Layson and W. Greg Harvey, both of Bowling Green, have been appointed as ALJs with the Ky. Department of Workers’ Claims.  Layson’s term expires July 14, 2020, while Harvey’s term expires December 31, 2017.

The DWC has announced that per a KBA opinion issued May 1, 2017, preparation and filing of a Form 110-Agreement as to Compensation constitutes the practice of law under SCR 3.020.  Therefore, the DWC will no longer accept Form 110 settlement agreements prepared by individuals not licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Beginning July 1, 2017, all Department of Workers’ Claims (DWC) submissions must be made in electronic format via the DWC’s Litigation Managment System (LMS).  However, due to the ongoing development of the capacity of the LMS to receive and process settlement agreements in electronic format, the DWC will continue, until further notice, to accept Form 110 Settlement Agreements in paper format subsequent to July 1, 2017.

The Workers’ Compensation Nominating Committee has recommended three nominees for the Administrative Law judge position, term expiring December 31, 2017, in the Department of Workers’ Claims.

Nominees are:  Anthony Gray, a defense attorney with Quintairos Prieto Wood Boyer of Lexington, KY; W. Greg Harvey, a Bowling Green, KY defense attorney with Kerrick Bachert; and Gregory Schabell, a Covington, KY plaintiff’s attorney with Berger and Cox.  This is Schabell’s 4th nomination for the position.

Sorry-were-closed-signThe Kentucky DWC announces that effective June 30, 2017, the Louisville DWC hearing site at 410 W. Chestnut Street will permanently close.  Beginning July 1, 2017 all Louisville dockets will be temporarily relocated and conducted at the Frankfort hearing site, 1025 Capital Center Drive, Frankfort, Kentucky.

Old-workerIn a decision rendered April 27, 2017, the Kentucky Supreme Court addressed the constitutionality of KRS 342.730(4) (adopted in 1996), which allows for the termination of workers’ compensation benefits when the injured employee qualifies for “normal old-age Social Security retirement benefits” under 42, U.S.C. secs. 301 to 1387f, or two years after the employee’s injury, whichever last occurs.

In deeming KRS 342.730(4) unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause, the Court found there was no reasonable basis for treating older injured workers differently from younger injured workers. The Court also found that KRS 342.730(4) violates the prohibition against special legislation found in Section 59 of the Kentucky Constitution, noting that “[a] special law is legislation which arbitrarily or beyond reasonable justification discriminates against some persons or objects and favors others.” (citation omitted)

Read the opinion here.

The Ky. Finance Cabinet has released the mileage rate for April through June 2017.  The rate will be .40.

2017 mileage rate april through june

Kentucky Department of Workers’ Claims (DWC) Chief Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Robert L. Swisher has been appointed as the Acting Commissioner of the DWC beginning April 1, 2017.  Swisher has been an ALJ since 2010 and has been Chief ALJ since 2014.

The Ky. Senate has given HB 296 its second reading and returned it to the Senate Economic Development Committee.   As of today, a meeting of the committee has not been scheduled.

question-mark10William P. Emrick, without explanation, has been replaced as Acting Commissioner of the Department of Workers’ Claims (DWC) by Michael J. Nemes, who is Deputy Secretary of the Kentucky Labor Cabinet.  No explanation or official statement from the DWC has been issued.

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