NCIC Update February 2023
Carolyn J. Thompson Appointed to Serve as Deputy Commissioner
Carolyn J. Thompson was appointed to serve as a Deputy Commissioner and her term began on January 2, 2023. Thompson previously served as a District Court judge and then a Resident Superior Court judge in the 9th Judicial District of North Carolina for a total of nine years. She worked in litigation for 16 years prior to that, and also as a certified mediator in Superior Court cases and Family Financial Settlement disputes. She is assigned to the Commission’s Raleigh office.
Kevin V. Howell Reappointed to Second Term as Deputy Commissioner
Deputy Commissioner Kevin V. Howell has been reappointed to serve a second term, which began on December 30, 2022. Deputy Commissioner Howell will continue to serve out of the Commission’s Raleigh office.
Strict Enforcement of Late Responsive Filings Pursuant to N.C.G.S. § 97-18(j)
The Commission has been regularly assessing sanctions for Carriers/Employers failing to file a Form 60, 61, or 63 within thirty (30) days following notice from the Commission of the filing of a claim. Failure to file a Form within the requisite period results in a fine of $400.00. After the initial sanction of $400.00, Carriers/Employers shall have thirty (30) days anew in which to remit payment-in-full for the sanction AND to file a Form 60, 61, or 63. Failure to do either will result in an additional $200.00 sanction and being referred to an Enforcement Docket before the Commission for additional sanctions. These sanctions could include, but are not limited to, contempt.
Though this rule has been in effect since 2017, we are now seeing strict enforcement and numerous defendants have been scheduled on a contempt docket for failure to file the Forms, or to remit payment for the respective fines.
Corrected Medical Fee Schedule Tables for 2022
Rule 11 NCAC 23J .0102 requires the Industrial Commission to publish annually on its website three tables (a Professional Fee Schedule Table, a Durable Medical Equipment (DME) Fee Schedule Table, and a Clinical Laboratory Fee Schedule Table). The Commission has reported it recently discovered inaccuracies in the fee schedule tables, and it has now corrected the inaccuracies to align with the information in the 2022 fee schedule tables and with the requirements of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 97-26 and Subchapter J of the Industrial Commission’s rules. The revised schedule is posted on the Commission’s website.
Maximum Weekly Benefit for 2023
The Commission has established the maximum weekly benefit for 2023 pursuant to N.C.G.S. § 97-29. As of January 1, 2023, the maximum weekly benefit applicable to all injuries arising on or after January 1, 2023 is $1,254.00.