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Chapter 4.5. Division of Workers' Compensation
Subchapter 2. Workers' Compensation Appeals Board--Rules and Practice Procedure
Article 13. Liens
§10770. Filing and Service of Lien Claims.
(a) Format of Lien Claims:
(1) Unless the lien claimant is excepted by parts (A) through (C) of section 10228(c)(5), a lien claimant under Labor Code sections 4903 or 4903.1 shall file its lien claim: (A) utilizing an optical character recognition lien claim form approved by the Appeals Board completed in compliance with section 10228(c); or (B) electronically utilizing an e-form approved by the Appeals Board.
(2) Lien claimants set forth in parts (A) through (C) of section 10228(c)(5) may file a lien claim utilizing an optical character recognition form completed in compliance with section 10228(e).
(b) Filing of Lien Claims with the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board:
(1) Only original (i.e., initial or opening) lien claims accompanied by a proof of service shall be accepted for filing. Except as provided in subdivisions (g) or (h) of section 10233 or as ordered by the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board, no amended liens and no documentation in support of any lien (original or amended) will be accepted. If an original lien is filed with supporting documentation, the original lien shall be filed but not the supporting documentation.
Unless the lien claimant is concurrently filing an initial (case opening) application in accordance with section 10770.5, a lien claim that does not bear an adjudication case number previously assigned by the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board for the injury will not be accepted.
Any lien claim or supporting documentation submitted in violation of this subdivision shall not be deemed filed for any purpose, shall not be acknowledged or returned to the lien claimant, and may be destroyed at any time without notice.
(2) Any amended lien or documentation supporting any lien (original or amended) previously filed or lodged for filing may be destroyed without notice.
(3) The service of a lien claim on a defendant, or the service of notice of any claim that would be allowable as a lien, shall not constitute the filing of a lien claim with the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board within the meaning of its rules of practice and procedure or within the meaning of Labor Code section 4903.1 et seq., including but not limited to section 4903.5.
(4) Where a lien has been served on any party under Labor Code section 4903.1(b), no party shall have an obligation to file that lien with the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board if:
(A) the lien has been paid in full; or
(B) a good faith partial payment has been made and:
(i) the lien claimant has been concurrently provided with a clear written explanation that both justifies the amount paid and specifies all additional information the lien claimant must submit as a prerequisite to additional or full payment, in conformity with the following, as applicable: (I) Lab. Code, § 4603.2(b)(1) and Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, § 9792.5(c) for medical treatment liens; (II) Lab. Code, § 4622 and Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, § 9794(b) & (c) for medical-legal liens; and (III) Cal. Code Regs., tit. 8, § 9795.4(a) for interpreter liens; and
(ii) no additional written demand for payment is made by the lien claimant within 90 calendar days after the partial payment.
(c) Service of Lien Claims and Supporting Documentation on the Parties
(1) All original and amended lien claims, together with a full statement or itemized voucher supporting the lien and a proof of service, shall be served on:
(A) the injured worker (or, if deceased, the worker's dependent(s)), unless:
(i) the worker or dependent is represented by an attorney or other agent of record, in which event service may be made solely upon the attorney or agent of record; or
(ii) the underlying case of the worker or dependent(s) has been resolved. For purposes of this subdivision, the underlying case will be deemed to have been resolved if:
(I) in a stipulated findings and award or in a compromise and release agreement, a defendant has agreed to hold the worker or dependent(s) harmless from the specific lien claim being filed and has agreed to pay, adjust, or litigate that lien claim;
(II) a defendant had written notice of the lien claim before the lien was filed and, in a stipulated findings and award or in a compromise and release agreement, that defendant has agreed to pay, adjust, or litigate all lien claims;
(III) the application for adjudication of claim filed by the worker or the dependent(s) has been dismissed, and the lien claimant is filing or has filed a new application; or
(IV) the worker or the dependent(s) choose(s) not to proceed with his, her, or their case.
(B) any employer(s) or insurance carrier(s) that are parties to the case and, if represented, their attorney(s) or other agent(s) of record.
(2) The full statement or itemized voucher supporting the lien claim or amended lien claim shall include: (A) any amount(s) previously paid by any source for each itemized service; (B) a statement that clearly and specifically sets forth the basis for the claim for additional payment; (C) proof that the lien claimant is the service provider or owner of the alleged debt; and (D) a declaration under penalty of perjury under the laws of the State of California that all of the information provided is true and correct.
The requirement of proof that the lien claimant is the owner of the alleged debt may be satisfied if, as part of the declaration under penalty of perjury, the declarant states that the lien claimant possesses documents either establishing original ownership of the lien claim or establishing that the right to payment for the claimed services was transferred to the lien claimant by the original owner and any intermediate owners. The lien claimant shall furnish a copy of such documentation to any party or to the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board upon demand and shall have a copy available for immediate production at any lien conference or lien trial.
(3) When serving an amended lien claim, the lien claimant shall indicate in the box set forth on the lien form that it is an “amended” lien claim.
(d) The lien claimant shall provide the name, mailing address, and telephone number of a person with authority to resolve the lien claim on behalf of the lien claimant.
(e) For purposes of this subdivision, an “amended” lien includes: (1) a lien that is for or includes additional services or charges for the same injured employee for the same date or dates of injury; (2) a lien that reflects a change in the amount of the lien based on payments made by the defendant; and/or (3) a lien that has been corrected for clerical or mathematical error. A subsequent lien claim that adds an additional adjudication case number or numbers is an “amended” lien with respect to the adjudication case number(s) originally listed.
(f) Within five business days after a lien has been resolved or withdrawn, the lien claimant shall provide written notification to:
(1) the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board;
(2) the party defendant(s) or, if represented, their attorney(s); and
(3) the worker or dependent(s) or, if represented, the attorney(s) for the worker or dependent(s), except that no such notification is required if the underlying case has been resolved as provided in subdivision (c)(1)(A)(ii)(I) through (IV).
(g) The Workers' Compensation Appeals Board shall either serve or, under sections 10500(a) and 10544, cause to be served notice on all lien claimants of each hearing scheduled, whether or not the hearing directly involves that lien claimant's lien claim.
(h) Inclusion of the injured employee's Social Security number on a lien form is voluntary, not mandatory. A failure to provide a Social Security number will not have any adverse consequences. Nevertheless, although a lien claimant is not required by law to include the employee's Social Security number, lien claimants are encouraged to do so because this will facilitate the processing and filing of the lien claim. Social Security numbers are used solely for identification and verification purposes in order to administer the workers' compensation system. A Social Security number will not be disclosed, made available, or otherwise used for purposes other than those specified, except with the consent of the applicant, or as permitted or required by statute, regulation, or judicial order.
(i) Any violation of the provisions of this section may give rise to monetary sanctions, attorney's fees, and costs under Labor Code section 5813 and Rule 10561.
(j) The provisions of subdivisions (b)(3), (b)(4), and (c)(2) shall not apply to any notice of claim or lien claim of: (1) the Employment Development Department; (2) the California Victims of Crime Program; (3) any lien claimant listed as being excepted under parts (A) through (C) of section 10228(c)(5); and (4) any governmental entity pursuing a lien claim for child support or spousal support.
Note: Authority cited: Sections 133, 5307, 5309 and 5708, Labor Code. Reference: Sections 4603.2, 4622, 4903, 4903.1, 4903.4, 4903.5, 4903.6, 4904 and 5813, Labor Code; Sections 9792.5, 9794, 9795.4, and 10561, title 8, California Code of Regulations.
1. Amendment exempt from OAL review pursuant to Government Code section 11351 filed 12-19-90; operative 1-1-91 (Register 91, No. 7).
2. Amendment filed 12-23-93; operative 1-1-94. Submitted to OAL for printing only pursuant to Government Code section 11351 (Register 93, No. 52).
3. Amendment filed 12-19-2002; operative 1-1-2003. Submitted to OAL for printing only pursuant to Government Code section 11351 (Register 2002, No. 51).
4. Amendment of section and Note filed 11-17-2008; operative 11-17-2008. Submitted to OAL for printing only (Register 2008, No. 47).
5. Amendment of section heading, section and Note filed 5-21-2012; operative 5-21-2012 pursuant to Government Code section 11343.4. Submitted to OAL for printing only pursuant to Government Code 11351 (Register 2012, No. 21).
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