Newsline No. 23-06
April 25, 2006

Division of Workers’ Compensation implements peak hour solution for phone system

The Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) has initiated an improvement to alleviate wait times during morning and afternoon peak phone use periods. When a party to a disputed claim is running late to a court appearance, they can now advise the court by emailing or leaving a voice message on a designated system.

“This new approach takes those callers just advising us they will be late to court out of the system during our prime times,” said DWC Court Administrator Keven Star. “In turn, injured workers and others calling with substantial questions about their cases will get to speak to someone sooner.”

The “late to court” notices can be handled in two ways: All DWC local offices now have a designated email box that will be checked between 8:30 and 9:30 a.m., and again between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m., just prior to morning or afternoon court calendar sessions. Any party running late to a hearing may email the local office where the hearing is scheduled. Email boxes are set up using the three letter code corresponding to that office and can be found on the division’s Web site. For example, to notify Anaheim when running late, a user would send an email to AHM@dir.ca.gov.

Additionally, callers to all offices except Bakersfield, Goleta and Grover Beach can choose to leave a “late to court” voicemail message in a special voice mail box. This can be done by calling the local office and pressing seven at the prompt.

Both voice and email messages left in this new system will receive priority delivery to the judge hearing the case. Users should know the only messages that will be acted on are those from parties advising they will be late to court. Email or voicemail messages left in the “late to court” system for any other purpose will be deleted without action.

Those leaving a “late to court” message must provide their name, the case name and / or number for which they are late and a contact number.

“Sometimes by small steps and sometimes by leaps, we’re moving the workers’ comp court system into the 21st century,” said Star. “All those who take advantage of this new service are helping us move in the right direction”.

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