- Aug 02, 2018
Legislative Update by Attorney Alison Stewart
WCES - Workers' Compensation Electronic System
A new electronic filing system is tentatively scheduled to be implemented beginning in December of 2018. The new system will be known as Workers’ Compensation Electronic System, or WCES (pronounced “wick-ess”). Training will be provided by the Iowa Division of Workers’ Compensation for attorneys and other stakeholders who will be required to use the system. It is the intention of the Division that the system will provide for electronic filing of all pleadings and documents with the Division. The new system will also provide for more efficient scheduling of hearings, comprehensive case management, and greatly improved EDI transactions. The proposed administrative rules relating to the implementation of this system were recently sent out for comment and we are now waiting for them to be adopted. These rules will instruct parties how to appropriately navigate the new system.
The Division of Workers’ Compensation is now providing a system to conduct hearings by phone or video through a system called CourtCall. This system allows attorneys and parties to avoid travel time and the cost of commuting to a hearing location. The system is currently available at the Des Moines hearing venue for any hearing the parties and the hearing deputy agree to. It may also be available for road venues with advanced arrangements. There are some expenses associated with use of this program. The cost is $45 for the first 45 minutes and $12.50 for each 15 minute increment thereafter. This could be an excellent tool for remote employer witnesses, for example.
More information on these systems can be found at: https://www.iowaworkcomp.gov/news-and-updates