A. Notwithstanding § 23-908, subsection E , no claim for compensation shall be valid or enforceable unless the claim is filed with the commission by the employee, or if resulting in death by the parties entitled to compensation, or someone on their behalf, in writing within one year after the injury occurred or the right thereto accrued. The time for filing a compensation claim begins to run when the injury becomes manifest or when the claimant knows or in the exercise of reasonable diligence should know that the claimant has sustained a compensable injury. Except as provided in subsection B of this section, neither the commission nor any court shall have jurisdiction to consider a claim which is not timely filed under this subsection, except if the employee or other party entitled to file the claim has delayed in doing so because of justifiable reliance on a material representation by the commission, employer or insurance carrier or if the employee or other party entitled to file the claim is insane or legally incompetent or incapacitated at the time the injury occurs or the right to compensation accrues or during the one-year period thereafter. If the insanity or legal incompetence or incapacity occurs after the one-year period has commenced, the running of the remainder of the one-year period shall be suspended during the period of insanity or legal incompetence or incapacity. If the employee or other party is insane or legally incompetent or incapacitated when the injury occurs or the right to compensation accrues, the one-year period commences to run immediately upon the termination of insanity or legal incompetence or incapacity. The commission upon receiving a claim shall give notice to the carrier.
B. Failure of an employee or any other party entitled to compensation to file a claim with the commission within one year or to comply with § 23-908 shall not bar a claim if the insurance carrier or employer has commenced payment of compensation benefits under § 23-1044 , 23-1045 or 23-1046 , except that the payments provided for by § 23-1046, subsection A , paragraph 1 and § 23-1065, subsection A shall not be considered compensation benefits for the purposes of this section.
C. If the commission receives a notification of the injury, the commission shall send a claim form to the employee.
D. The issue of failure to file a claim must be raised at the first hearing on a claim for compensation in respect to the injury or death.
E. Within ten days after receiving notice of an accident, the employer shall inform his insurance carrier and the commission on such forms as may be prescribed by the commission.
F. Each insurance carrier and self-insuring employer shall report to the commission a notice of the first payment of compensation and shall promptly report to the commission and to the employee by mail at his last known address any denial of a claim, any change in the amount of compensation and the termination thereof, except that claims for medical, surgical and hospital benefits which are not denied shall be reported to the commission in the form and manner determined by the commission. In all cases where compensation is payable, the carrier or self-insuring employer shall promptly determine the average monthly wage pursuant to § 23-1041 . Within thirty days of the payment of the first installment of compensation, the carrier or self-insuring employer shall notify the employee and commission of the average monthly wage of the claimant as calculated, and the basis for such determination. The commission shall then make its own independent determination of the average monthly wage pursuant to § 23-1041 . The commission shall within thirty days after receipt of such notice notify the employee, employer and carrier of such determination. The amount determined by the commission shall be payable retroactive to the first date of entitlement. The first payment of compensation shall be accompanied by a notice on a form prescribed by the commission stating the manner in which the amount of compensation was determined.
G. Except as otherwise provided by law, the insurance carrier or self-insuring employer shall process and pay compensation and provide medical, surgical and hospital benefits, without the necessity for the making of an award or determination by the commission.
H. On a claim that has been previously accepted, an employee may reopen the claim to secure an increase or rearrangement of compensation or additional benefits by filing with the commission a petition requesting the reopening of the employee's claim upon the basis of a new, additional or previously undiscovered temporary or permanent condition, which petition shall be accompanied by a statement from a physician setting forth the physical condition of the employee relating to the claim. A claim shall not be reopened if the initial claim for compensation was previously denied by a notice of claim status or determination by the commission and the notice or determination was allowed to become final and no exception applies under § 23-947 excusing a late filing to request a hearing. A claim shall not be reopened because of increased subjective pain if the pain is not accompanied by a change in objective physical findings. A claim shall not be reopened solely for additional diagnostic or investigative medical tests, but expenses for any reasonable and necessary diagnostic or investigative tests that are causally related to the injury shall be paid by the employer or the employer's insurance carrier. Expenses for reasonable and necessary medical and hospital care and laboratory work shall be paid by the employer or the employer's insurance carrier if the claim is reopened as provided by law and if these expenses are incurred within fifteen days of the date that the petition to reopen is filed. The payment for such reasonable and necessary medical, hospital and laboratory work expense shall be paid for by the employer or the employer's insurance carrier if the claim is reopened as provided by law and if such expenses are incurred within fifteen days of the filing of the petition to reopen. Surgical benefits are not payable for any period prior to the date of filing a petition to reopen, except that surgical benefits are payable for a period prior to the date of filing the petition to reopen not to exceed seven days if a bona fide medical emergency precludes the employee from filing a petition to reopen prior to the surgery. No monetary compensation is payable for any period prior to the date of filing the petition to reopen.
I. Upon the filing of a petition to reopen a claim the commission shall in writing notify the employer's insurance carrier or the self-insuring employer, which shall in writing notify the commission and the employee within twenty-one days after the date of such notice of its acceptance or denial of the petition. The reopened claim shall be processed thereafter in like manner as a new claim.
J. The commission shall investigate and review any claim in which it appears to the commission that the claimant has not been granted the benefits to which such claimant is entitled. If the commission determines that payment or denial of compensation is improper in any way, it shall hold a hearing pursuant to § 23-941 within sixty days after receiving notice of such impropriety. Any claim for temporary partial disability benefits under this subsection must be filed with the commission within two years after the date the claimed entitlement to compensation accrued or within two years after the date on which an award for benefits encompassing the entitlement period becomes final. A claim for temporary partial disability compensation shall be deemed to accrue when the employee knew or with the exercise of reasonable diligence should have known that the carrier, self-insured employer or special fund denied or improperly paid compensation. A claim for temporary partial disability benefits shall not be deemed to have accrued any earlier than the effective date of this amendment to this subsection.
K. When there is a dispute as to which employer, or insurance carrier, is liable for the payment of a compensable claim, the commission, by order, may designate the employer or insurance carrier which shall pay the claim. Payment shall begin within fourteen days after the employer or insurance carrier has been ordered by the commission to commence payment. When a final determination has been made as to which employer or insurance carrier is actually liable, the commission shall direct any necessary monetary adjustment or reimbursement among the parties or carriers involved.
L. Upon application to the commission, and for good cause shown, the commission may direct that a document filed as a claim for compensation benefits be designated as a petition to reopen, effective as of the original date of filing. In like manner upon application and good cause shown, the commission may direct that a document filed as a petition to reopen be designated a claim for compensation benefits, effective as of the original date of filing.
M. If the insurance carrier or self-insurer does not issue a notice of claim status denying the claim within twenty-one days from the date the carrier is notified by the commission of a claim or of a petition to reopen, the carrier shall pay immediately compensation as if the claim were accepted, from the date the carrier is notified by the commission of a claim or petition to reopen until the date upon which the carrier issues a notice of claim status denying such claim. Compensation includes medical, surgical and hospital benefits. This section shall not apply to cases involving seven days or less of time lost from work.
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