A trial in EAMS will look very similar to a case that is currently being tried. However, some of the words have been morphed to fit the modern technology employed by EAMS. In order to correctly use the new EAMS paradigm, it is necessary to become familiar with some of these new terms and concepts, which are directly pulled from the DWC website (www.dir.ca.gov/DWC/EAMS/EAMS_Glossary) and are listed below.
Some words are the same as before, but may have a different meaning than has traditionally been used by the workers’ comp community. For instance, litigators think of an “employer” as the entity that provided employment to the injured worker, but in EAMS terms, an “employer” might be the Surgery Center Lien claimant where the injured worker had her surgery or even the law firm that employs the defense attorney. (See below.) And some phrases have been replaced entirely. For instance, a hearing will now be “cancelled” rather than “OTOC’d” (Order Taking Off Calendar.)
It might be a good idea to print this information and keep track of these terms. You could even create your own dictionary for future use. One can add on to the dictionary of terms as one learns and uses the EAMS system. Each office should have this information available for new employees, as well as training for existing staff. Incorrect filings and classifications will only cause delay and unnecessary frustration. Those who put the time in on the front end will be happy campers in the long term.
Case Participants: (In general, a participant is usually a client, employer or a person.)
Participant: Either a person or employer—an entity that would be registered in EAMS. At a certain point, the user may link this person or employer to a case; in this instance, the entity becomes a "case participant".
Client: Used to identify the primary client in the case. Essentially, this is the injured worker.
Employer: Used to describe any group that needs to be registered in EAMS that is an entity of more than one person.
Person: The term used for any single person that needs to be listed in EAMS in order to act as a party in a case. However, Single-Owner businesses will be listed as “employers”.
Primary: There are several uses of primary and the definition needs context. “Primary client” refers to the injured worker in EAMS.
Status (employer): Shows whether the employer has cases that are active in EAMS.
Status (person): Shows whether the person has a case or cases that are active in EAMS. A person’s status stays active until death. After that the status is closed.
Calendaring a Hearing: Schedule (hearing): The first time a hearing is scheduled.
Continue (hearing): This occurs when a hearing is postponed prior to the date of the hearing. It is then rescheduled for another date.
Reschedule (hearing): Setting a new date for a hearing before the original has occurred. (See: continue)
Cancel (hearing): The cancellation of an already scheduled hearing. This is a new term for what is currently called an order taken off calendar (OTOC).
Adjourn (hearing): When a hearing is ended by the hearing official and another hearing must be scheduled before the case can be resolved.
Complete (hearing): To record the details of a hearing such as attendees, date and time of hearing. This includes any notes about the disposition of the hearing and any orders relating to the case(s) at the hearing.
Types of Cases
Companion case: Cases that share a common factor. The common factor can be: the same injured worker; the same date of injury (e.g. with multiple injured workers who are injured in the same accident, with an identical mechanism of injury); the same employer, insurance company, or lien claimant, but with different injured workers, etc.
Consolidated case: When there are a number of cases for an injured worker the judge will order that all evidence be filed in one case number. That evidence then serves as the record for all cases involved.
Linked case: Cases that have some sort of relationship with each other are “linked” cases. Case linking is an indicator that cases need to be designated as master case or non-master cases.
Master case: For the Uninsured Employers Benefit Trust Fund (UEBTF) or the Subsequent Injuries Benefit Trust Fund (SIBTF), this concept comes into effect when an injured worker has more than one case and UEBTF/SIBTF wishes to only pay on one of these cases. A master case will then be chosen as the only case for which payments can be made. For ADJ, this concept comes into effect when cases are combined and one case is selected as the master. Actions taken on cases linked to the master case are noted on the master case rather than the linked case.
ADJ: A district office adjudication case.
Home: A link in EAMS that will take you back to the home page.
Legacy system: The current system of record, like DEU’s system or the WCAB online system.
Navigation: Navigation supplies related links to other screens as found on the current EAMS screen. EAMS offers both top level and left-hand navigation.
Notice comments: Comments that may be found on notices sent out to participants by EAMS.
This blog has been approved by the California Division of Workers' Compensation.
Can a companion case (same injured worker) be also a linked case but not vice versa? I am kinda confused.