Update from the North Carolina Industrial Commission
Deputy Commissioner Hearings
In person Deputy Commissioner hearings were scheduled to resume effective January 1, 2022, but the return date has now been delayed. In person Deputy Commissioner and Full Commission hearings are currently scheduled to begin March 1, 2022. In person Deputy Commissioner hearings will follow the safety protocols for the County courts where the hearing is being held or the safety protocols of the building where the hearing is held, whichever are more restrictive.
Deputy Commissioner John C. Shafer to Retire
Deputy Commissioner John Schafer, who has been the Dispute Resolution Coordinator for the IC since 1997, has retired effective February 1, 2022. Current Chief Deputy Commissioner Tamara Nance will serve as the acting Dispute Resolution Coordinator effective February 1, 2022.
David Hullender and Thomas Perlungher Reappointed to Second Terms
Deputy Commissioners David Hullender and Thomas Perlungher were reappointed to second six-year terms effective February 1, 2022.
2022 Maximum Weekly Compensation Rate
The maximum weekly compensation rate for 2022 was increased to $1184.
Industrial Commission Issues Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2020/2021
The IC issued its annual report for fiscal year 2020/2021. When compared to fiscal year 2019/2020, the total number of workers compensation claims filed increased in 20/21, but the total number of Deputy Commissioner and Full Commission hearings dropped as did the number of cases referred to mediation and Orders approving clincher agreements. However, the overall mediation settlement rate stayed approximately the same in 20/21 when compared to 19/20 despite almost all mediations moving to a remote format in 20/21.
Bruce Hamilton is a Partner in Teague Campbell’s Raleigh office. He is the legal advisor for the NCASI and, for the past 30 years, his practice has focused exclusively on workers’ compensation defense.