The Appeals Process - Permanent Total Disability

Workers who suffer an occupational injury or disease that prevents them from permanently engaging in any work may apply for permanent total disability (PTD) by submitting Form IC-2 (located on the Forms page) to their local IC office.

Claims for PTD are administered in a slightly different way than non-PTD claims. In an attempt to serve all parties speedily, the IC has established specific guidelines for PTD claims.

The IC's policy on PTD is set forth within Ohio Administrative Code Rule 4121-3-34.

Each PTD application must be accompanied by a physician's report that addresses the injured worker's inability to work. The examination upon which the report is based must have been performed within 24 months prior to the filing of the application.

Additionally, all evidence that the injured worker wants to be considered at the hearing must be on file or accompany the application. Any evidence filed after the application must be approved by the Hearing Administrator to be considered at the hearing.

The IC will verify receipt of the PTD application by mailing an acknowledgment letter to all the concerned parties.

The employer has 60 days from the date the acknowledgment letter is mailed by the IC to submit all medical evidence. However, the employer must notify the IC, in writing, within 14 days of the date of the acknowledgement letter if the employer wants its medical evidence reviewed by the IC specialist. If necessary, the regional Hearing Administrator may grant an extension to this timeframe upon the request of either party.

If the injured worker or employer has been unable to obtain the proper medical records despite a good faith effort, the IC Hearing Administrator can, upon request by a motion, issue a subpoena to obtain such records. Should a subpoena be issued, it shall be served by the party requesting the subpoena.

The Industrial Commission will schedule the injured worker for medical examination on the allowed conditions in the claim.

After the Industrial Commission medical exam, the IC may publish a tentative order if it seems clear that the injured worker is either able to return to his/her former position of employment or is unable to engage in any employment due solely to their medical conditions.

If neither party objects to the tentative order within 14 days, the tentative order becomes final.

The Hearing Administrator will notify the parties that they have 14 days from the date that the specialists’ reports were mailed to the parties to notify the Industrial Commission, in writing, if they intend to submit vocational evidence. If that notification is made, the parties have 45 days from the date that the Industrial Commission specialist reports were mailed to the parties in which to submit their additional vocational information.

Upon the expiration of the 45 day period, no further vocational information will be accepted without prior approval of the Hearing Administrator.

After all evidence has been collected, the IC Hearing Administrator may schedule a pre-hearing conference. The injured worker and employer will be notified of the date and time no less than 14 days prior to the pre-hearing conference.

The pre-hearing conference may be in person or by telephone conference call. Stipulations, disclosures of witnesses, need for further evidence, and any other pertinent issues can be discussed at the pre-hearing conference.

The injured worker or the employer may request a pre-hearing conference anytime during the processing period.

After the pre-hearing conference, a hearing will be scheduled before a Staff Hearing Officer. The hearing will be held no earlier than 14 days after the pre-hearing conference.

Parties will be notified by mail of the Staff Hearing Officer's decision.