What You Need to Know About New Ohio Workers’ Compensation Legislation

Kegler Brown E-mployment Alert

Smart Summary for Employers

  • Sub. H.B. 27, containing numerous Workers’ Compensation provisions, became fully effective on 9/29/2017.
  • New provisions alter old rules or create new rules on filing limitations, intoxication and incarceration, attorneys’ fees, firefighters and more.

The Ohio Legislature recently made a few tweaks to the law that you should be aware of. Here are some of the highlights:

Old rule: The statute of limitations to file a Workers’ Compensation claim was 2 years.

New rule: The statute of limitations to file a Workers’ Compensation claim was reduced to 1 year.

Old rule: Parties had 60 days to file an appeal into Court on “right to participate” issues.

New rule: If the parties agree, there is a mechanism to extend the deadline from 60 days to 150 days before an appeal is due so that the matter can be settled.

Old rule: Statute listed various drugs and levels of intoxication for purposes of the “rebuttable presumption” (that drug use caused the injury) to apply.

New rule: List is eliminated and in its place, general Federal Guidelines now apply with regard to intoxication levels.

Old rule: Compensation was denied only to an incarcerated claimant.

New rule: Neither an incarcerated claimant nor an incarcerated dependent is entitled to compensation.

Old rule: If a claimant was successful in Court on a “right to participate” issue, his/her attorney was entitled to attorneys’ fees, capped at $4,200.

New rule: The cap has been increased to $5,000.

New rule: Firefighters, who previously were not entitled to “wage loss” compensation in an allowed cancer claim, are now eligible for such compensation.

The Firefighter Cancer Presumption is now rebuttable.

For a complete listing of the statutory changes, please click here.

Please note that these statutory changes became effective September 29, 2017, and generally apply to claims with dates of injury after the effective date.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss any of these matters, please do not hesitate to contact me at [email protected].