The New Jersey Division of Workers' Compensation [DWC] has announced that it will go forward with in-person hearings effective March seven 2022.
While some pro forma and uncontested proceedings may still be handled in a virtual fashion, The DWC has announced the contested proceedings such as trials, emergent and non-emergent motions for temporary medical benefits, and other contested motions, must now be contacted in-person.
COVID-19 pandemic safety measures are required to be observed to prevent the spread of infection at the DWC facilities. Proof of vaccination will NOT be required.
While the Notice to the Bar issued by the DWC did not address the situation where a party or witness is ill from COVID-19 or Post Acute Sequalea of COVID-19 (PASC), it is assumed that the compensation judge would continue to permit virtual testimony on application.
Even though the COVID-19 pandemic is now in its third year, there have been no reported court decisions involving COVID-19 and NJ workers' compensation benefits to date.
An Executive Order (EO No. 288 ) declaring that the State of NJ is still operating under a Public Health Emergency [PHE] was signed by Governor Murphy on February 7, 2022. It extends for another thirty days the PHE. In addition to the allowance for vaccine distribution, vaccination testing or testing requirements in certain settings, the Order permits certain causal relationship rebuttable presumptions to continue to be in effect. Essential workers are afforded a rebuttable presumption that illnesses caused by COVID19 are deemed to be related to their employment. Under the Emergency Health Powers Act, the Public Health Emergency will expire after 30 days, unless renewed. State COVID-19 metrics will be reevaluated at the time of expiration to determine if an extension will be needed.
Recommended Citation: Gelman, Jon L., NJ Division of Workers' Compensation to Go Forward With In-Person Hearings, Workers' Compensation Blog, Feb 14, 2022), https://workers-compensation.blogspot.com/2022/02/nj-division-of-workers-compensation-to.html
Jon L. Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author of NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (Thomson-Reuters) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (Thomson-Reuters). For over 5 decades the Law Offices of Jon L Gelman 1.973.696.7900 firstname.lastname@example.org have represented injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.
Blog: Workers ' Compensation
LinkedIn Group: Injured Workers Law & Advocacy Group
Author: "Workers' Compensation Law" Thomson-Reuters
Updated: 14 FEB 2022