Workers’ Compensation

Ca. Workers' Comp. Quarterly 2019, Vol. 32, No. 3

The Special Adjudication Unit: A New Forum Within the WCAB for the Administration of Justice

Saro K. Kerkonian, Esq. Los Angeles, California

With the reforms of late 2016 a new system of adjudication was added to the suite of services run through the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB). The Special Adjudication Unit (SAU) was created as an anti-fraud measure. It was designed to address the reality that many providers in the workers’ compensation system were able to continue to invoke the standard jurisdiction and process of the WCAB to collect for their billing, despite their being criminally charged or convicted related to their services in the workers’ compensation system. This article provides an overview and update about that new adjudication system, which was tasked with addressing the anti-fraud initiative that the Legislature put in place.

Background

In August of 2016 the California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) and its Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) disclosed that there were

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