Title 23. Labor and Workers’ Compensation
Chapter 10. Workers’ Compensation
Part IV. Administration of Claims
Subpart A. Office of Workers’ Compensation Administration
23:1291 Creation, powers, and duties of the office of workers’ compensation administration
A. The office of workers’ compensation administration is hereby established within the Louisiana Workforce Commission to administer the provisions of this Chapter. The office shall be administered by a director, who shall be a director appointed pursuant to R.S. 36:307.
B. The director shall have the following powers, duties, and functions:
(1) To supervise, direct, and account for the administration and operation of the office, its sections, functions, and employees.
(2) To appoint such personnel as may be necessary for the administration and operation of the office within such limitations as may be imposed by law.
(3) Repealed by Acts 1988, No. 938, § 3, eff. July 1, 1989.
(4) To require, that every Louisiana employer of more than fifteen employees provide, if self insured, or is provided by the insurer, if privately insured, plans for implementation of a working and operational safety plan. The plans shall be made available for inspection by the director upon request but shall be privileged and confidential pursuant to R.S. 23:1293 provided that the operational safety plan may be subpoenaed from the employer who shall certify under oath that it is a duplicate of the plan submitted to the director. In order to assure adequate safety resources for Louisiana employers and employees, the director shall maintain a list of safety engineers from the private sector, which shall be available upon request by any Louisiana employer.
(5) To establish and promulgate in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act such rules and regulations governing the administration of this Chapter and the operation of the office as may be deemed necessary and which are not inconsistent with the laws of this state.
(6) To delegate any of his powers, duties, or functions to a manager of a section, except his powers to remove employees of the office or to fix their compensation, and to establish and promulgate rules and regulations.
(7) To review and approve “own-risk” applications.
(8) To monitor “own-risk” insurance programs in accordance with the rules of the office of workers’ compensation administration.
(9) To enforce the reimbursement schedule established for drugs, supplies, hospital care and services, medical and surgical treatment, and any nonmedical treatment recognized by the laws of this state as legal.
(10) To require the use of appropriate procedures, including a utilization review process that establishes standards of review, for determining the necessity, advisability, and cost of proposed or already performed hospital care or services, medical or surgical treatment, or any nonmedical treatment recognized by the laws of this state as legal, and to resolve disputes over the necessity, advisability, and cost of same.
(11) To engage the services of qualified experts in the appropriate health-care fields to assist him in the discharge of his responsibilities in Paragraph (10) of this Subsection, and to establish fees and promulgate rules and procedures in furtherance of his performance of these duties.
(12) To audit the specific medical records of the patient under treatment by any health care provider who has furnished services or treatment to a person covered by this Chapter, or the records of any person or entity rendering care, services, or treatment or furnishing drugs or supplies for the purpose of determining whether an inappropriate reimbursement has been made.
(13) To promulgate necessary rules and regulations in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act, imposing reasonable fines or penalties for a failure to comply with any rule or regulation adopted under the provisions of this Chapter. In no event shall such fine or penalty exceed five hundred dollars.
(14) To appoint an advisory council of five persons to consult with him periodically upon the efficient administration of his responsibilities under this Chapter.
C. There shall be established within the office the following sections:
(1) A hearing section, the primary duty of which shall be to resolve and/or adjudicate disputed claims filed with the office of workers’ compensation administration.
(2) A medical service section, the primary duty of which shall be to administer and implement the provisions of Paragraphs B(9), (10), (11), and (12) of this Section and R.S. 23:1121 through 1123.
(3) A workplace safety section, the primary duty of which shall be to administer and implement the provisions of Paragraph (B)(4) of this Section, the OSHA 21(d)(1) program and the Workers’ Compensation Cost Containment Act. This section shall also have the responsibility for the coordination of the safety programs of the Louisiana Workforce Commission.
(4) A records management section, which shall administer and implement the provisions of R.S. 23:1201(H), 1292, 1306, 1310.10, and 1310.12.
(5) A workers’ compensation fraud section, which shall administer the provisions of R.S. 23:1170, 1171, 1171.1, 1172, 1172.1, 1172.2, 1208, and 1295 by investigating allegations of workers’ compensation fraud and noncompliance by employers.
(6) Repealed by Acts 2001, No. 627, § 2.
D. Each section shall perform such other functions and duties as may be prescribed by the director and shall act under the direction and supervision of the director.
Amended by Acts 1983, 1st Ex.Sess., No. 1, § 1, eff. July 1, 1983; Acts 1988, No. 938, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1989; Acts 1989, No. 512, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1990; Acts 1989, No. 530, § 1; Acts 1991, No. 892, § 1; Acts 1992, No. 447, § 1, eff. June 20, 1992; Acts 1992, No. 763, § 1; Acts 1992, No. 794, § 1; Acts 1995, No. 246, § 1, eff. June 14, 1995; Acts 1997, No. 89, § 1, eff. June 11, 1997; Acts 1997, No. 1172, § 4, eff. June 30, 1997; Acts 2001, No. 627, § 1; Acts 2005, No. 257, § 1; Acts 2014, No. 375, § 1.