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SECTION 142
General powers and duties of the workmen's compensation board
Workers' Compensation (WKC) CHAPTER 67, ARTICLE 8
§ 142. General powers and duties of the workmen's compensation board.
1. The workmen's compensation board shall have power to hear and
determine all claims for compensation or benefits or relating to special
funds created under the provisions of this chapter, in the manner
provided by this chapter; to require medical service for injured
employees as provided by this chapter; to approve and fix attorney's
fees and claims for medical service to the extent provided in this
chapter; to excuse failure to give notice either of injury or death of
an employee, to approve agreements, to modify or rescind awards, to make
conclusions of fact and rulings of law, to certify questions to the
appellate division of the supreme court, to enter orders in appealed
cases, to determine the time for the payment of compensation, to order
the reimbursement of employers for amounts advanced, to assess
penalties, to commute awards, to compromise actions for the collection
of awards, to require or permit employers to deposit the present value
of awards in the aggregate trust fund of the state fund, to determine by
rule the assignment of a minor's right to sue a third party, to require
guardianship for minor dependents, to hear and determine claims under
the occupational disease act, to order physical examinations, to take
testimony by depositions; and to have and exercise all other powers and
duties, exclusive of purely administrative functions, originally
conferred or imposed upon the workmen's compensation commission by this
chapter, or by any other statute, and by chapter six hundred and
seventy-four of the laws of nineteen hundred fifteen conferred and
imposed upon the industrial commission, and by chapter fifty of the laws
of nineteen hundred twenty-one conferred and imposed upon the industrial
board. For the purpose of exercising such powers and performing such
duties, the workmen's compensation board shall be deemed to be a
continuation of the industrial board provided for by the provisions of
the labor law; and all proceedings under this chapter pending before
such board are hereby transferred to the workmen's compensation board
without prejudice to the rights of any party to such proceeding.

The workmen's compensation board, subject to the provisions of this
chapter and of the provisions of the labor law as to the distribution of
functions, shall succeed to all the rights, powers, duties and
obligations of the department of labor, the industrial commissioner and
the industrial board, in so far as they relate to workmen's
compensation, as heretofore constituted, except such as are vested in
the chairman of the board by this article and except with respect to
article six of this chapter.

Whenever the term "industrial board" or the "chairman" or
"vice-chairman" thereof appears in this chapter or in the provisions of
the labor law after the time this article takes effect, it shall be
construed to mean the workmen's compensation board or the chairman
thereof, as created by the provisions of this chapter, as may be
required by the context unless the contrary shall be indicated.

2. Any review, hearing, rehearing, inquiry or investigation required
or authorized to be conducted or made by the workers' compensation board
may be conducted or made by any panel of the board consisting of not
less than three members thereof, and the order, decision or
determination of a majority of the members of a panel shall be deemed
the order, decision or determination of the board from the date of
filing thereof with the secretary of the board, unless the board on its
own motion, or on application by a party in interest for a full board
review made in accordance with section twenty-three of this chapter,
shall modify or rescind such order, decision or determination. Four
panels shall be constituted at all times, and the chair shall assign the
members to the panels upon which they shall serve. At least one member
on each panel shall be an attorney and counsellor-at-law, but the
absence of an attorney on any panel shall not invalidate the order,
decision or determination of a majority of the members of the panel if
at least two affirmative votes are cast in favor of such action. The
panels shall be constituted so that the members of the board shall
alternate in their periods of service together thereon. Whenever a
number of proceedings remains pending before the board for a period in
excess of thirty days, members of the board shall hold hearings and
otherwise act in the discharge of their duties evenings and at other
convenient times on all days of the week except Sundays, in addition to
the times when they would perform such duties in the ordinary conduct of
the business of the board, in order to expedite the disposal thereof.
The chair may and shall, when directed by the governor, prescribe the
hours and the times for such additional performance of duty by the
members of the board and the period or periods for the continuance
thereof.

Notwithstanding any provision in this section to the contrary, a
member of the board may be designated by the chair to act individually
in the hearing and determination of any claim under this chapter, or
conduct any investigation, hearing or inquiry hereunder, or review and
rescind any order, decision or determination upon any claim and restore
such claim for further trial hearing and evidence or consideration
except that such member may not conduct any appellate rehearing of any
case or otherwise review any order, decision or determination upon any
claim and reverse, modify or affirm such order, decision or
determination which by the provisions of this section shall be reheard
or reviewed by the board or a panel thereof.

3. The members of the workmen's compensation board, a referee or any
other officer or employee of the board if duly authorized by the
chairman, may administer oaths and take affidavits in matters relating
to the provisions of this chapter.

The members of the workmen's compensation board, the referees and any
other officer of the board designated by the chairman, shall have power:

a. To issue subpoenas for and compel the attendance of witnesses and
the production of books, contracts, papers, documents and other
evidence;

b. To hear testimony and take or cause to be taken depositions of
witnesses residing within or without this state in the manner prescribed
by law for like depositions in civil actions in the supreme court.
Subpoenas and commissions to take testimony shall be issued under the
seal of the board.

4. Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, neither the
industrial commissioner nor any board or other agency of the department
of labor shall in any way direct, review, modify or reverse any decision
or finding of the board nor shall the industrial commissioner or any
board or other agency of the department of labor supervise or control
the board or its members in the exercise of any powers or in the
performance of any duties under this chapter.

5. The workers' compensation board shall keep an accurate record of
all hearings held. Where the decision of a referee is affirmed by the
board upon review, the board shall assess against each insurance carrier
or employer seeking such review the sum of one hundred fifty dollars and
may assess against any other party the sum of twenty dollars. The amount
so secured from these assessments shall be paid into the state treasury.

6. The workers' compensation board shall not release any information
acquired pursuant to section five hundred thirty-seven of the labor law
and section one hundred seventy-one-a of the tax law unless the release
of such information is required to further fraud control activities
undertaken by the workers' compensation board pursuant to this chapter,
in which case release of such information shall be subject to the
restrictions contained in section five hundred thirty-seven of the labor
law and section one hundred seventy-one-a of the tax law.

7. Where there has been a motor vehicle accident which caused personal
injury and there is a dispute as to whether the injury occurred in the
course of employment, the workers' compensation board shall, after
notice to the no-fault carrier and the workers' compensation carrier,
hold an expedited hearing on the issue of whether the accident occurred
during the course of employment.