By purchasing an annuity within the limitations provided by law, in such insurance company granting annuities and licensed in this state, as may be designated by the department; or
By making payment in gross upon a 7% interest discount basis to be approved by the department; and
In cases where the time for making payments or the amounts thereof cannot be definitely determined, by furnishing a bond, or other security, satisfactory to the department for the payment of compensation as may be due or become due. The acceptance of the bond, or other security, and the form and sufficiency thereof, shall be subject to the approval of the department. If the employer or insurer is unable or fails to immediately procure the bond, then, in lieu thereof, deposit shall be made with a credit union, savings bank, savings and loan association, bank or trust company designated by the department, of the maximum amount that may reasonably become payable in these cases, to be determined by the department at amounts consistent with the extent of the injuries and the law. The bonds and deposits are to be reduced only to satisfy claims and withdrawn only after the claims which they are to guarantee are fully satisfied or liquidated under sub. (1)
Any insured employer may, within the discretion of the department, compel the insurer to discharge, or to guarantee payment of, the employer's liabilities in any case described in this section and thereby release the employer from compensation liability in that case, but if for any reason a bond furnished or deposit made under sub. (4)
does not fully protect, the compensation insurer or insured employer, as the case may be, shall still be liable to the beneficiary of the bond or deposit.
If compensation is due for permanent disability following an injury or if death benefits are payable, payments shall be made to the employee or dependent on a monthly basis as provided in pars. (b)
Subject to par. (d)
, if the employer or the employer's insurer concedes liability for an injury that results in permanent disability and if the extent of the permanent disability can be determined based on a minimum permanent disability rating promulgated by the department by rule, compensation for permanent disability shall begin within 30 days after the end of the employee's healing period.
Subject to par. (d)
, if the employer or the employer's insurer concedes liability for an injury that results in permanent disability, but the extent of the permanent disability cannot be determined without a medical report that provides the basis for a minimum permanent disability rating, compensation for permanent disability shall begin within 30 days after the employer or the employer's insurer receives a medical report that provides a basis for a permanent disability rating.
The department shall promulgate rules for determining when compensation for permanent disability shall begin in cases in which the employer or the employer's insurer concedes liability, but disputes the extent of permanent disability.
Payments for permanent disability, including payments based on minimum permanent disability ratings promulgated by the department by rule, shall continue on a monthly basis and shall accrue and be payable between intermittent periods of temporary disability so long as the employer or insurer knows the nature of the permanent disability.
The department may direct an advance on a payment of unaccrued compensation for permanent disability or death benefits if the department determines that the advance payment is in the best interest of the injured employee or the employee's dependents. In directing the advance, the department shall give the employer or the employer's insurer an interest credit against its liability. The credit shall be computed at 7%.
No lump sum settlement shall be allowed in any case of permanent total disability upon an estimated life expectancy, except upon consent of all parties, after hearing and finding by the department that the interests of the injured employee will be conserved thereby.
The interest credit under sub. (6) [now sub. (6m)] was properly calculated on a per annum basis rather than a one-time simple interest basis. Hamm v. LIRC, 223 Wis. 2d 183
, 588 N.W.2d 358
(Ct. App. 1998).
Department forms and records; public access. 102.33(1)(1)
The department shall print and furnish free to any employer or employee any blank forms that the department considers necessary to facilitate efficient administration of this chapter. The department shall keep any record books or records that the department considers necessary for the proper and efficient administration of this chapter.
Except as provided in pars. (b)
, the records of the department related to the administration of this chapter are subject to inspection and copying under s. 19.35 (1)
Notwithstanding par. (a)
, a record maintained by the department that reveals the identity of an employee who claims worker's compensation benefits, the nature of the employee's claimed injury, the employee's past or present medical condition, the extent of the employee's disability, the amount, type or duration of benefits paid to the employee or any financial information provided to the department by a self-insured employer or by an applicant for exemption under s. 102.28 (2) (b)
is confidential and not open to public inspection or copying under s. 19.35 (1)
. The department may deny a request made under s. 19.35 (1)
or, subject to s. 102.17 (2m)
, refuse to honor a subpoena issued by an attorney of record in a civil or criminal action or special proceeding to inspect and copy a record that is confidential under this paragraph, unless one of the following applies:
The requester is the employee who is the subject of the record or an attorney or authorized agent of that employee. An attorney or authorized agent of an employee who is the subject of a record shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the employee if requested by the department.
The record that is requested contains confidential information concerning a worker's compensation claim and the requester is an insurance carrier or employer that is a party to any worker's compensation claim involving the same employee or an attorney or authorized agent of that insurance carrier or employer, except that the department is not required to do a random search of its records and may require the requester to provide the approximate date of the injury and any other relevant information that would assist the department in finding the record requested. An attorney or authorized agent of an insurance carrier or employer that is a party to an employee's worker's compensation claim shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the insurance carrier or employer if requested by the department.
The record that is requested contains financial information provided by a self-insured employer or by an applicant for exemption under s. 102.28 (2) (b)
and the requester is the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption or an attorney or authorized agent of the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption. An attorney or authorized agent of the self-insured employer or of the applicant for exemption shall provide a written authorization for inspection and copying from the self-insured employer or applicant for exemption if requested by the department.
A court of competent jurisdiction in this state orders the department to release the record.
The requester is the subunit of the department that administers child and spousal support or a county child support agency under s. 59.53 (5)
, the request is made under s. 49.22 (2m)
and the request is limited to the name and address of the employee who is the subject of the record, the name and address of the employee's employer and any financial information about that employee contained in the record.
The department of revenue requests the record for the purpose of locating a person, or the assets of a person, who has failed to file tax returns, who has underreported taxable income or who is a delinquent taxpayer; identifying fraudulent tax returns; or providing information for tax-related prosecutions.
Notwithstanding par. (a)
, a record maintained by the department that contains employer or insurer information obtained from the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau under s. 102.31 (8)
or 626.32 (1) (a)
is confidential and not open to public inspection or copying under s. 19.35 (1)
unless the Wisconsin compensation rating bureau authorizes public inspection or copying of that information.
Every employer and every insurance company that fails to keep the records or to make the reports required by this chapter or that knowingly falsifies such records or makes false reports shall forfeit to the state not less than $10 nor more than $100 for each offense. The department may waive or reduce a forfeiture imposed under this subsection if the employer or insurance company that violated this subsection requests a waiver or reduction of the forfeiture within 45 days after notice of the forfeiture is mailed to the employer or insurance company and shows that the violation was due to mistake or an absence of information.
Any employer, or duly authorized agent thereof, who, without reasonable cause, refuses to rehire an employee injured in the course of employment, or who, because of a claim or attempt to claim compensation benefits from such employer, discriminates or threatens to discriminate against an employee as to the employee's employment, shall forfeit to the state not less than $50 nor more than $500 for each offense. No action under this subsection may be commenced except upon request of the department.
Any employer who without reasonable cause refuses to rehire an employee who is injured in the course of employment, where suitable employment is available within the employee's physical and mental limitations, upon order of the department and in addition to other benefits, has exclusive liability to pay to the employee the wages lost during the period of such refusal, not exceeding one year's wages. In determining the availability of suitable employment the continuance in business of the employer shall be considered and any written rules promulgated by the employer with respect to seniority or the provisions of any collective bargaining agreement with respect to seniority shall govern.
An employer cannot satisfy sub. (3) by rehiring with an intent to fire at a later date. Dielectric Corporation v. LIRC, 111 Wis. 2d 270
, 330 N.W.2d 606
(Ct. App. 1983).
An employer has the burden to prove that rehiring was in good faith. West Allis School Dist. v. DILHR, 116 Wis. 2d 410
, 342 N.W.2d 415
A one-day absence from work due to an injury triggered the rehire provision under sub. (3). Link Industries, Inc. v. LIRC, 141 Wis. 2d 551
, 415 N.W.2d 574
(Ct. App. 1987).
For liability under sub. (3), the employee must show that he or she: 1) was an employee; 2) sustained a compensable injury;. 3) applied for rehire; 4) had the application for rehire refused due to the injury. Universal Foods Corporation v. LIRC, 161 Wis. 2d 1
, 467 N.W.2d 793
(Ct. App. 1991).
Sub. (3) does not bar an employee from seeking arbitration under a collective bargaining agreement to determine whether termination following an injury violated the agreement. Sub. (3) relates to harm other than worker injuries and is not subject to the exclusive remedy provision of s. 102.03 (2); the "exclusive liability" language in sub. (3) does not bar lawsuits but imposes a penalty on the employer for refusal to hire. County of LaCrosse v. WERC, 182 Wis. 2d 15
, 513 N.W.2d 708
A LIRC interpretation of sub. (3), that a violation requires an employee who is unable to return to a prior employment to express an interest in reemployment in a different capacity, was reasonable. Hill v. LIRC, 184 Wis. 2d 110
, 516 N.W.2d 441
(Ct. App. 1994).
If an employer shows that it refused to rehire an injured employee because the employee's position was eliminated to reduce costs and increase efficiency, reasonable cause has been shown under sub. (3). Ray Hutson Chevrolet, Inc. v. LIRC, 186 Wis. 2d 118
, 519 N.W.2d 649
(Ct. App. 1994).
An attendance policy that includes absences due to work-related injuries as part of the total of absences allowed before termination violates sub. (3). Great Northern Corp. v. LIRC, 189 Wis. 2d 313
, 525 N.W.2d 361
(Ct. App. 1994).
Neither sub. (2) nor case law authorizes employees who are terminated for filing worker's compensation claims to bring wrongful discharge claims against their employers. Brown v. Pick 'n Save Food Stores, 138 F. Supp. 2d 1133
Every employer of 3 or more persons and every employer who is subject to this chapter shall keep a record of all accidents causing death or disability of any employee while performing services growing out of and incidental to the employment. This record shall give the name, address, age, and wages of the deceased or injured employee, the time and causes of the accident, the nature and extent of the injury, and any other information the department may require by rule or general order. Reports based upon this record shall be furnished to the department at such times and in such manner as the department may require by rule or general order, in a format approved by the department.
History: 1975 c. 147
; 1985 a. 83
; 2001 a. 37
Records and reports of payments.
Every insurance company that transacts the business of compensation insurance, and every employer who is subject to this chapter, but whose liability is not insured, shall keep a record of all payments made under this chapter and of the time and manner of making the payments and shall furnish reports based upon these records and any other information to the department as the department may require by rule or general order, in a format approved by the department.
Rules and general orders; application of statutes.
The provisions of s. 103.005
relating to the adoption, publication, modification, and court review of rules or general orders of the department shall apply to all rules promulgated or general orders adopted under this chapter.
History: 1995 a. 27
; 2001 a. 37
Reports not evidence in actions.
Reports furnished to the department pursuant to ss. 102.37
shall not be admissible as evidence in any action or proceeding arising out of the death or accident reported.
Incidental compensation. 102.42(1)
Treatment of employee.
The employer shall supply such medical, surgical, chiropractic, psychological, podiatric, dental and hospital treatment, medicines, medical and surgical supplies, crutches, artificial members, appliances, and training in the use of artificial members and appliances, or, at the option of the employee, if the employer has not filed notice as provided in sub. (4)
, Christian Science treatment in lieu of medical treatment, medicines and medical supplies, as may be reasonably required to cure and relieve from the effects of the injury, and to attain efficient use of artificial members and appliances, and in case of the employer's neglect or refusal seasonably to do so, or in emergency until it is practicable for the employee to give notice of injury, the employer shall be liable for the reasonable expense incurred by or on behalf of the employee in providing such treatment, medicines, supplies and training. Where the employer has knowledge of the injury and the necessity for treatment, the employer's failure to tender the necessary treatment, medicines, supplies and training constitutes such neglect or refusal. The employer shall also be liable for reasonable expense incurred by the employee for necessary treatment to cure and relieve the employee from the effects of occupational disease prior to the time that the employee knew or should have known the nature of his or her disability and its relation to employment, and as to such treatment subs. (2)
shall not apply. The obligation to furnish such treatment and appliances shall continue as required to prevent further deterioration in the condition of the employee or to maintain the existing status of such condition whether or not healing is completed.
If an employee who has sustained a compensable injury undertakes in good faith invasive treatment that is generally medically acceptable, but that is unnecessary, the employer shall pay disability indemnity for all disability incurred as a result of that treatment. An employer is not liable for disability indemnity for any disability incurred as a result of any unnecessary treatment undertaken in good faith that is noninvasive or not medically acceptable. This subsection applies to all findings that an employee has sustained a compensable injury, whether the finding results from a hearing, the default of a party, or a compromise or stipulation confirmed by the department.
When the employer has notice of an injury and its relationship to the employment, the employer shall offer to the injured employee his or her choice of any physician, chiropractor, psychologist, dentist, physician assistant, advanced practice nurse prescriber, or podiatrist licensed to practice and practicing in this state for treatment of the injury. By mutual agreement, the employee may have the choice of any qualified practitioner not licensed in this state. In case of emergency, the employer may arrange for treatment without tendering a choice. After the emergency has passed the employee shall be given his or her choice of attending practitioner at the earliest opportunity. The employee has the right to a 2nd choice of attending practitioner on notice to the employer or its insurance carrier. Any further choice shall be by mutual agreement. Partners and clinics are considered to be one practitioner. Treatment by a practitioner on referral from another practitioner is considered to be treatment by one practitioner.
The employer is not liable for the expense of unreasonable travel to obtain treatment.
(3) Practitioner choice unrestricted.
If the employer fails to tender treatment as provided in sub. (1)
or choice of an attending practitioner as provided in sub. (2)
, the employee's right to choose the attending practitioner is not restricted and the employer is liable for the reasonable and necessary expense thereof.
(4) Christian Science.
Any employer may elect not to be subject to the provisions for Christian Science treatment provided for in this section by filing written notice of such election with the department.
(5) Artificial members.
Liability for repair and replacement of prosthetic devices is limited to the effects of normal wear and tear. Artificial members furnished at the end of the healing period for cosmetic purposes only need not be duplicated.
(6) Treatment rejected by employee.
Unless the employee shall have elected Christian Science treatment in lieu of medical, surgical, dental or hospital treatment, no compensation shall be payable for the death or disability of an employee, if the death be caused, or insofar as the disability may be aggravated, caused or continued by an unreasonable refusal or neglect to submit to or follow any competent and reasonable medical, surgical or dental treatment or, in the case of tuberculosis, by refusal or neglect to submit to or follow hospital or medical treatment when found by the department to be necessary. The right to compensation accruing during a period of refusal or neglect to submit to or follow hospital or medical treatment when found by the department to be necessary in the case of tuberculosis shall be barred, irrespective of whether disability was aggravated, caused or continued thereby.
(8) Award to state employee.
Whenever an award is made by the department in behalf of a state employee, the department of workforce development shall file duplicate copies of the award with the department of administration. Upon receipt of the copies of the award, the department of administration shall promptly issue a voucher in payment of the award from the proper appropriation under s. 20.865 (1) (fm)
, and shall transmit one copy of the voucher and the award to the officer, department or agency by whom the affected employee is employed.
(9) Rehabilitation; physical and vocational. 102.42(9)(a)(a)
One of the primary purposes of this chapter is restoration of an injured employee to gainful employment. To this end, the department shall employ a specialist in physical, medical and vocational rehabilitation.
Such specialist shall study the problems of rehabilitation, both physical and vocational and shall refer suitable cases to the department for vocational evaluation and training. The specialist shall investigate and maintain a directory of such rehabilitation facilities, private and public, as are capable of rendering competent rehabilitation service to seriously injured employees.
The specialist shall review and evaluate reported injuries for potential cases in which seriously injured employees may be in need of physical and medical rehabilitation and may confer with the injured employee, employer, insurance carrier or attending practitioner regarding treatment and rehabilitation.
The requirement that medical treatment be supplied during the healing period, defined as prior to the time the condition becomes stationary, is not determined by reference to the percentage of disability, but by a determination that the injury has stabilized. Custodial care, as distinguished from nursing services, is not compensable. Mednicoff v. DILHR, 54 Wis. 2d 7
, 194 N.W.2d 670
In appropriate cases, the department may postpone a determination of permanent disability for a reasonable period until after a claimant completes a competent and reasonable course of physical therapy or vocational rehabilitation as an essential part of the treatment required for full recovery and minimization of damages. Transamerica Insurance Co. v. DILHR, 54 Wis. 2d 272
, 195 N.W.2d 656
An employee who wishes to consult a second doctor on the panel after the first says no further treatment is needed may do so without notice or consent. If the second doctor prescribes an operation that increases the amount of disability, the employer is liable. Spencer v. DILHR, 55 Wis. 2d 525
, 200 N.W.2d 611
Sub. (7) [now sub. (6)] relieves an employer of liability when the employee refuses treatment provided by the employer, as required under sub. (1). An employee is not required to seek treatment from someone other than the employer. Klein Industrial Salvage v. DILHR, 80 Wis. 2d 457
, 259 N.W.2d 124
Under ss. 102.42 (9) (a), 102.43 (5), and 102.61, the department may extend temporary disability, travel expense, and maintenance costs beyond 40 weeks if additional training is warranted. Beloit Corporation v. State, 152 Wis. 2d 579
, 449 N.W.2d 299
(Ct. App. 1989).
Sub. (1) requires an employer to pay medical expenses even after a final order has been issued. Linsey v. LIRC, 171 Wis. 2d 499
, 493 N.W.2d 14
Sub. (2) (a) does not require an employer to consent to out-of-state health care expenses that result from a referral by an in-state practitioner selected in accordance with the statute. UFE Inc. v. LIRC, 201 Wis. 2d 274
, 548 N.W.2d 57
The continuing obligation to compensate an employee for work related medical expenses under s. 102.42 does not allow agency review of compromise agreements after the one-year statute of limitations in s. 102.16 (1) has run if the employee incurs medical expenses after that time. Schenkoski v. LIRC, 203 Wis. 2d 109
, 552 N.W.2d 120
(Ct. App. 1996), 96-0051
Under sub. (2), an employee can seek reimbursement for expenses related to 2 practitioners regardless of whether they are the first 2 practitioners whom the employee has seen. Hermax Carpet Marts v. LIRC, 220 Wis. 2d 611
, 583 N.W.2d 662
(Ct. App. 1998).
Section 102.01 (2) (g) sets the date of injury of an occupational disease and s. 102.01 (1) provides that medical expenses incurred before an employee knows of the work-related injury are compensable. Read together, medical expenses in occupational disease cases are not compensable until the date of injury, but once the date is established all expenses associated with the disease, even if incurred before the date of injury, are compensable. United Wisconsin Insurance Co. v. LIRC, 229 Wis. 2d 416
, 600 N.W.2d 186
(Ct. App. 1999).
Spencer creates an exception to the general rule that compensation is permitted only if medical expenses are reasonably required and necessary. As long as a claimant engages in unnecessary and unreasonable treatment in good faith, the employer is responsible for payment. Honthaners Restaurants, Inc. v. LIRC, 2000 WI App 273, 240 Wis. 2d 234
, 621 N.W.2d 660
Continuing Payments for Medical Expenses in Worker's Compensation Proceedings. Carnell & Woog. Wis. Law. Nov. 1993.
Weekly compensation schedule.
If the injury causes disability, an indemnity shall be due as wages commencing the 4th calendar day from the commencement of the day the scheduled work shift began, exclusive of Sundays only, excepting where the employee works on Sunday, after the employee leaves work as the result of the injury, and shall be payable weekly thereafter, during such disability. If the disability exists after 7 calendar days from the date the employee leaves work as a result of the injury and only if it so exists, indemnity shall also be due and payable for the first 3 calendar days, exclusive of Sundays only, excepting where the employee works on Sunday. Said weekly indemnity shall be as follows:
If the injury causes total disability, two-thirds of the average weekly earnings during such disability.
If the injury causes partial disability, during the partial disability, such proportion of the weekly indemnity rate for total disability as the actual wage loss of the injured employee bears to the injured employee's average weekly wage at the time of the injury.
If the disability caused by the injury is at times total and at times partial, the weekly indemnity during each total or partial disability shall be in accordance with subs. (1)
If the disability period involves a fractional week, indemnity shall be paid for each day of such week, except Sundays only, at the rate of one-sixth of the weekly indemnity.
Temporary disability, during which compensation shall be payable for loss of earnings, shall include such period as may be reasonably required for training in the use of artificial members and appliances. Except as provided in s. 102.61 (1g)
, temporary disability shall also include such period as the employee may be receiving instruction pursuant to s. 102.61 (1)
. Temporary disability on account of receiving instruction of the latter nature, and not otherwise resulting from the injury, shall not be in excess of 80 weeks. Such 80-week limitation does not apply to temporary disability benefits under this section, travel or maintenance expense under s. 102.61 (1)
, or private rehabilitation counseling or rehabilitative training costs under s. 102.61 (1m)
if the department determines that additional training is warranted. The necessity for additional training as authorized by the department for any employee shall be subject to periodic review and reevaluation.
Except as provided in par. (b)
, no sick leave benefits provided in connection with other employment or wages received from other employment held by the employee when the injury occurred may be considered in computing actual wage loss from the employer in whose employ the employee sustained injury.
In the case of an employee whose average weekly earnings are calculated under s. 102.11 (1) (a)
, wages received from other employment held by the employee when the injury occurred shall be considered in computing actual wage loss from the employer in whose employ the employee sustained the injury as provided in this paragraph. If an employee's average weekly earnings are calculated under s. 102.11 (1) (a)
, wages received from other employment held by the employee when the injury occurred shall be offset against those average weekly earnings and not against the employee's actual earnings in the employment in which the employee was engaged at the time of the injury.
Wages received from the employer in whose employ the employee sustained injury or from other employment obtained after the injury occurred shall be considered in computing benefits for temporary disability.
If an employee has a renewed period of temporary disability commencing more than 2 years after the date of injury and, except as provided in par. (b)
, the employee returned to work for at least 10 days preceding the renewed period of disability, payment of compensation for the new period of disability shall be made as provided in par. (c)