WCC e-Bulletin No 51 - November 2012
Summaries include: Lodgement of new applications – deadlines; Increase in Commission lodgements and resulting delays; Interim Registrar’s Guideline – Request for directions for production; Christmas timetable reminder
Lodgement of new applications
The Minister recently announced that transitional arrangements would allow for any matters registered in the Commission by 31 December 2012 to be finalised in accordance with the previous cost provisions. This deadline is fast approaching and, as the Commission will only have limited staff on duty during the Christmas/New Year period, we would encourage parties to submit any new claims as soon as possible. You will need to allow ample time for the Commission to register any new claims.
Registration can only occur if the claims are compliant. Please ensure that claims are only lodged with full details and all necessary information which will allow them to be compliant.
Update on Increase in Commission lodgements and resulting delays
Since the announcement of amendments to the Workers Compensation legislation in late June 2012, the Commission has experienced a large increase in the volume of lodgements. Prior to the legislative amendments the Commission received a long term average of approximately 780 applications per month. However, since late June 2012, the commission has received more than 7,000 applications.
Teleconference listing times prior to the legislative changes were at approximately 8 weeks. At present, the listing time for teleconferences are now well into 2013.
We thank you for your patience while we manage the increase in workload.
Interim Registrar's Guideline - Requests for Directions for Production, other than at a teleconference fixed in proceedings
With the current delays in processing applications at the Commission the attached Interim Registrar’s Guideline has been introduced to streamline the process for the issuing of Directions for Production. The Guideline specifically relates to the issuing of Directions to Produce prior to the holding of a teleconference where the consent of the non-requesting party has been obtained. The Guideline is effective from 26 November 2012 to 28 February 2013. Please read the attached Guideline carefully and ensure compliance with the process during the above period.
Christmas Timetable reminder
Due to the large volume of applications registered over the past couple of months, the Commission is now listing teleconferences well into 2013. As is our usual practice, we are planning to have a brief shut-down over the Christmas/New Year period (Thursday, 20 December 2012 to Tuesday, 8 January 2013 inclusive) where no teleconferences will be listed. The revised timetable relating to applications lodged during this period is as follows:
- No teleconferences scheduled by the Commission from 20/12/12 to 8/1/13
- Conciliation/arbitration hearings and mediations will be held during this period on request only
- Extended service dates for matters registered between 17/12/12 and 31/12/12
- Extended date for filing of reply matters registered between 4/12/12 and 31/12/12
- The Registry will remain open on all business days during this period, albeit with reduced staff.
Bill Roche, Acting President