The Division of Workers' Compensation will take some preventative measures the first week of January 2000 to ensure that potential Y2K issues will not interfere with business conducted at DWC/WCAB District Offices. The measures include:
. No hearings or conferences will be scheduled for the week of Jan. 3-Jan. 7. All offices will remain open, fully staffed and otherwise fully functional. Workers' Compensation Administrative Law Judges will issue decisions, parties may file papers and request case information, DWC Information and Assistance Officers will be on duty, and all other business will be conducted as usual. In addition, judges at each office will be available for "walk through" Compromise and Release approvals during the week.
Not requiring parties to appear at a scheduled hearing is merely a safeguard just in case public transportation, power, communications or other public services are affected that week. This five-day grace period on scheduled hearings should have no noticeable impact on the overall hearing calendar, since additional hearing days will be scheduled during the remainder of the month.
. Several staff members will come into each office the weekend of Jan. 1-Jan. 2 to test all of the computer systems to ensure they are operating properly. Other items to be checked include making sure that there is electrical power in the building, the telephones are working, and the building security systems will allow public access during the week.
. DWC staff are being trained to respond to any problems, in the unlikely event that any should occur during the week. Back-up procedures, including performing some tasks manually, will be in place if needed.
"Taking these prudent measures will ensure that the public's
business with our agency will continue essentially unaffected should there
actually be any Y2K issues at the beginning of next year," said DWC Administrative
Director Richard P. Gannon.